JAL Brings Universal Design to its Narita Airport Remodel


Narita Airport Remodel Map

On December 18, 2007, JAL will open up new passenger check-in counters at Narita Airport Terminal 2 - the airline’s main international hub – as part of its overall aim of reducing average passenger waiting times by approximately 50% during peak hours. The airline will completely renovate both existing First Class and Executive Class counters. New counters will be established exclusively for the use of the airline’s frequent flyers who are either JAL Global Club (JGC) or JMB Sapphire members. JAL will also unveil brand new Support Counters dedicated to servicing the needs of priority guests, such as passengers with disabilities, passengers traveling with babies or expectant mothers. The improvements will enable JAL to provide its passengers with a more convenient, user-friendly, stress free check-in experience at the airport.

First Class Counters

Using a combination of glass and timber for a warmer, more welcoming atmosphere, JAL’s new First Class counters will be conveniently located in the center of the terminal’s 3rd floor just a short distance from the airline’s Fast Security Lane. Established in June 2006, JAL Fast Security Lane is a security check fastrack lane for only First Class passengers and frequent flyers. The first ever such facility at any of Japan's airports handling international flights.

JGC Counters

JAL will open new JGC Counters exclusively for the use of frequent flyers who are JAL Global Club (JGC) and JMB Sapphire members. The new area will be fitted with 8 Self Check-in Machines (SCM) to help speed up the check-in process. The JAL Fast Security Lane is also within easy reach of the JGC counters.

Executive Class Counters

In addition to the complete renovation of JAL’s Executive Class check-in counters, 12 additional Self Check-in Machines will also be installed.

Support Counters

Support Counters will be established dedicated to servicing the needs of priority guests such as passengers with disabilities, passengers traveling with babies, and expectant mothers.

Based on the principle of Universal Design, counters will be lower, low chairs will be provided, and handrails and walking stick holders will be incorporated to make the new check-in area as user-friendly as possible. Universal Design is an approach to the design of products, services and environments to be usable by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.

Furthermore, at the counters, passengers will be tended to by specially trained staff, and will also be able to rent baby cars and wheelchairs for use inside the airport.

Improvements to the check-in counters form just one part of JAL’s efforts to strengthen customer service at Narita Airport Terminal 2. On July 19 2007, JAL unveiled two completely revamped JAL First Class and JAL Sakura lounges at the terminal’s main building, both featuring a buffet-style hot meal service, stylish bar-counters, resident professional masseuses, and shower rooms. To reduce customer waiting times at check-in areas, JAL also plans to increase the number of check-in counters from 91 to about 140 later this year; increase the number of Self Check-in Machines (SCM) from 23 to about 70 by spring 2008, and in the future renew all economy class counters and establish e-style check-in areas fitted only with Self Check-in Machines (SCM).

Source: Japan Airlines

For a useful practical guide on air travel see Accessible Air Travel by United Spinal

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