Tigerair changes policy on guide dogs

Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on a Tigerair flight to Phuket. -- ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
Tigerair has relooked its guide dog policy, with a trial taking place on Oct 29, 2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 
Tigerair has relooked its guide dog policy, with a trial taking place on Oct 29, 2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

SINGAPORE - Tigerair has relooked its guide dog policy after it made headlines for refusing a guide dog on board one of its flights early last year.

The airline tried out the new policy on Wednesday, allowing visually impaired counsellor Cassandra Chiu and her guide dog Esme on its 9am flight to Phuket.

"I'm happy that Tigerair is to making travel more accessible to the visually impaired," said the 35-year-old.

About eight cabin crew have been trained by Ms Chiu on how to better assist passengers with vision difficulties.

The new policy, which has been four months in the making, will be subjected to approval by the relevant authorities.

Tigerair is also working with the Singapore Association of the Deaf to improve the flight experience for passengers with hearing impairments, said the chief operating officer of Tigerair, Mr Ho Yuen Sang.

"We will continue to take proactive steps to improve our capabilities to assist customers with special needs," he said.

samboh@sph.com.sg