Do United Airlines Have Wheelchairs?

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United airlines are one of the major airlines in the US that operates huge domestic and international routes. Their network ranges from small cities in the US to Europe, Asia, South America, Africa, Australia, and beyond. United Airlines has been in operation for almost 100 years now and during that period the fleet has grown to about 800 flights. The company is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois but it has hubs all across the US in places like Los Angeles, Denver, San Francisco, and others.

Do United Airlines Have Wheelchairs

The airline accepts wheelchairs and any other assistive devices for their customers. They accept scooters, folding or collapsible wheelchairs, non-folding devices, as well as powered assistive equipment. They also have wheelchairs available at their airports for customers to use. However, due to a large number of travelers they cater to every day, it is best to request a wheelchair before you get there through the travel agent.

Airport wheelchairs

Customers who need to access the airport using a wheelchair can do so by contacting the customer care center at united airlines and they will avail a wheelchair for the customer. Once the request for a wheelchair is made beforehand, a united airlines representative must be notified that you need a wheelchair for transportation to your gate upon arrival at the airport. To facilitate convenience for customers who use wheelchairs, united airlines’ airports have assistance centers in their lobbies.

Accessible boarding

While other airports are not built with jet bridges available, united airline’s airports usually have them to assist people with disabilities to comfortably board their flights. Additionally, if by any chance a specific airport has not been fitted with these jet bridges, the united airlines’ staff assists the customers in wheelchairs by lifting them onto the plane using a mechanical lift, ramp, or stair.

Wheelchairs onboard

While on the plane, united airlines’ wheelchairs are specifically designed to fit their aircraft. Every united airline aircraft that sits with more than 60 passengers has onboard wheelchairs. These wheelchairs are specifically used to move around in the plane and the crew is also well trained in handling passengers who need to use wheelchairs on the plane.

Traveling with personal wheelchairs

If a passenger would like to travel with a wheelchair, it is usually checked at the departure gate. The only restriction that united airlines enforce about wheelchairs is that if you have a powered wheelchair, they require that you arrive about an hour earlier than the airport check-in processing time. This is so that the equipment can be handled carefully and in no rush.

Manual wheelchairs

Passengers who use manual wheelchairs have the advantage that the staff can easily pack their foldable wheelchairs on board upon request. The united airlines’ planes have enough space to accommodate one adult wheelchair at a time so passengers who travel with their wheelchairs can fit in comfortably. The wheelchairs can also be stowed in the cargo bin if requested so the passenger must give specific instructions on that by filling in the united airlines’ wheelchair information card.

Powered wheelchairs

United Airlines does not disassemble batteries in powered wheelchairs or scooters, rather they require that the passenger fills in the wheelchair information card where the battery type can be indicated, and specific instructions on how to disassemble the wheelchair are stipulated. According to airport restrictions and guidelines, the passengers that use powered wheelchairs must specify the type of batteries they use either spillable, non-spillable, or lithium-ion. This is done so that the staff handles dangerous goods properly when flying.

Lost or damaged wheelchairs

If a wheelchair that belongs to united airlines is lost or destroyed during the flight, they require documented proof of damaged or a detailed note indicating the circumstances by which it was lost. Without such documentation, the company is going to charge you for damaging or losing their property. If a passenger’s wheelchair is lost or damaged during the flight or in the airport processing process, united airlines have the discretion to investigate the damage and make repairs. If lost, the federal regulations stipulate that the airline is not liable for lost wheelchairs or assistive devices.


In conclusion, when traveling using a wheelchair at united airlines liability is upon the passenger to make sure that the assistive device is in good condition at all times. The airline puts into consideration the challenges that disabled people face and for this, they provide very helpful staff members who are trained in handling such difficulties and make their passengers enjoy the experience as much as the other passengers.

Frequently asked questions
  1. Can I use my wheelchair for international travel?

Yes. The guidelines are given for wheelchair use in aircraft apply to all passengers regardless of their destinations.

  1. Can I change my flight after putting in a wheelchair request?

Yes. The process of making changes to your flight information is detailed on the united airlines’ website.

  1. Where is my wheelchair checked at the airport?

People using wheelchairs are given priority during the check-in process at the departure gate.

  1. Which other airlines have wheelchair accessibility?

Airlines that have wheelchair accessibility policies include Hawaiian airlines, delta air, JetBlue Alaska airlines, and frontier airlines. 

Do United Airlines Have Wheelchairs?

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