An airline boss is accusing healthy passengers of using a wheelchair service to get priority boarding.  

The American low-cost airline Frontier Airlines complains about massive abuse of its wheelchair service. CEO Barry Biffle recently made this clear at an event at the Wings Club in New York, as the New York Post reports. 

He himself observed that on a flight 20 passengers used the wheelchair service when boarding, but only three when disembarking. 

“We heal so many people,” he joked, according to the New York Post. But the misuse causes significant costs for the airline and delays for other passengers, Biffle said. Each request for a wheelchair costs the airline between $30 and $35.

Passengers requesting wheelchair service will be given priority boarding as the airline’s seating system operates on a first come, first served basis.

According to the New York Post, Frontier Airlines is not alone in this problem. Other airlines such as Southwest Airlines have also had similar experiences with “pre-boarding fraud”. 

The Air Carrier Access Act of 1986 prohibits airlines from discriminating against people with disabilities and requires them to provide safe transportation, including providing passengers with wheelchairs upon boarding. 

The airline’s website says: “We are pleased to be able to offer this service to our passengers who require a wheelchair or mobility aid.” 

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