Zoom CRO Training, Service Animal Travel Solutions (SATS), 2020 Market Study Report...and more!

Jan. 2021 News

At ODO it's been a great start to a promising New Year. Being deeply rooted in travel and tourism, we are very excited about the new vaccines. Hopefully it won't be long before we're talking about upcoming travel plans and new access features all over the world. In the meantime check out the new ODO Study. There will be more information released in the coming months, and the 79-page Report is now available for purchase. We hope this research acts as the voice of people with disabilities and creates change across the tourism industry. We're also excited about our newest offering, Service Animal Travel Solutions (SATS), designed to make the DOT documentation process as easy as possible for both travelers and air carriers. 

Eric Lipp, Executive Director
Open Doors Organization

New Service from ODO
Open Doors Organization created SATS as a free service for members of the disability community who rely on service dogs. This convenient, centralized database for mandatory DOT service animal forms is also designed to simplify the process and be cost effective for air carriers, domestic and international. After filling out the electronic Service Animal Air Transportation Form, the traveler receives a unique identifier for that handler/animal combination. After booking on a participating airline, the traveler submits the unique identifier through the SATS system to receive authorization for travel, confirmed by email. SATS launched on Jan. 11 with Alaska Airlines as the first carrier enrolled, and to date over 600 travelers have used the service! (Shown above: SATS homepage).

Zoom CRO Training: 3/17-18
Our first Initial CRO Training on Zoom, held this January for British Airways, was a big success so we're now offering the class for any carrier that needs to certify new Complaints Resolution Officials. The training will take place March 17-18 from 8am-12 noon EST (13:00 - 17:00 GMT). For pricing and registration, email Katy O'Reilly or call 773-388-8839. For CROs who need to maintain certification, the new ODO 2021 Annual CRO Refresh will be available shortly.

ODO 2020 Market Study--Get Your Copy!
Copies of the ODO 2020 Market Study are now for sale on the ODO website. Conducted by The Harris Poll last June/July, the 2020 Report provides a snapshot of 2018-19 when travel was still booming. During that 2-year period, 27 million travelers took a total of 81 million trips and spent $58.7 billion on just their own travel, up from $34.6 billion in the prior 2015 Study. Spending on air travel also increased to $11 billion. As in prior years, the 2020 Market Study provides details on Internet and mobile technology use and includes sections on travel destinations, air and cruise travel, and overnight accommodations as well as barriers to inclusive travel. New this year, questions about auto travel, vacation activities, and travel plans post-pandemic. 
ODO in Airport Magazine
The Dec. 2020/Jan. 2021 edition of Airport Magazine carries an article by Laurel Van Horn entitled, "Beyond the ADA: Creating an Equitable Experience for All." Based primarily on ACRP Report 210 for which ODO was the lead contractor, it gives 10 key recommendations for making airports more accessible with best practice examples from numerous domestic and international airports of all sizes. 

New ACRP 226 Report

Planning and Design of Airport Terminal Restrooms & Ancillary Spaces provides a thoughtful, step-by-step process to help airports plan, design, and implement restrooms and other amenities including SARAs, adult changing spaces and nursing/lactation rooms. Led by Alliiance with input on accessibility from ODO, ACRP 226 updates their earlier ACRP 130 Report on restrooms.

Inclusive Travel Report

Leonard Cheshire, a UK disability organization, worked in partnership with Expedia Group to prepare Breaking Down Barriers to Travel: Championing Disability and Inclusive Travel. The report spells out concrete steps to improve inclusion and provides mini-case studies from corporate leaders in accessibility such as Alaska Airlines Air Canada, Virgin Atlantic, Royal Caribbean and Marriott.

CRO Training

ODO offers Initial Complaints Resolution Official training in the U.S. and abroad, now available via Zoom.  To register, email Katy O'Reilly or call 773.388.8839. Our affordable Online CRO Refresh Training is new each year.
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