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Passengers with Reduced Mobility (PRMs)
As from 2008 the managing body of each EU airport is responsible for the provision of assistance to disabled persons and PRMs.
According to the EU Regulation 1107/2006, the related PRM handling charge should be “reasonable, cost-related, transparent and established by the managing body of the airport in cooperation with airport users, through the Airport Users Committee where one exists or any other appropriate entity”. It will be invoiced to airlines, equally spread over all passengers at the airport (solidarity principle).
AIRE airlines have found that they are facing unjustified higher charges for PRM handling since the airports have assumed responsibility for this service.
In 2011, the Commission published a report on the functionings and effects of the PRM legislation. It outlined a number of shortcomings in the implementation process as well as mentioning some remedies to resolve the issues.
AIRE argues that PRM charges at many airports in the EU is not in accordance with the Regulation, as:
- they are not always airport-specific
- the consultation process remains non-transparent
- carriers have been faced with unreasonable cost increases.
Also, as the provision of PRM handling services is organized by a single – and thereby de-facto monopolistic – entity, the cost of capital must be capped at the level of the 10 years’ Treasury bond.
AIRE also believes that that small children and parents travelling with small children should not be considered a PRM. Also, airlines should not have to bear the costs of providing extra seats or free seats for accompanying persons.