Aéroports de Montreal runs successful Premium Kids event

Running for its ninth successful year, Premium Kids was hosted at Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) today. The event seeks to diminish anxieties children on the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have around flying, enabling them to be calmer.

YUL Premium Kids

Premium Kids event at Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport seeks to lessen the anxieties of children on the autism spectrum disorder. Credit: Aéroports de Montréal

Organised by Aéroports de Montreal (ADM) in partnership with Air Transat, the Premium Kids event took place at Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) on 2 April 2023. Excitement and good cheer remained as fresh as it was nine years ago, when the event first launched to support children on the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or who have functional limitations. This unique day enables children to become familiar with the airport process and reduce anxieties around flying. 

This year, nearly 200 participants experienced the complete airport journey, from arriving at the parking lot to boarding an airplane, including checking in, going through security, and listening to in-flight safety instructions.

“The ADM team is delighted to have once again hosted Premium Kids, an event that is very close to our hearts,” said Martin Massé, Vice President, Sustainable Development at ADM. “Accompanied by their parents, the children were able to enjoy an experience in a real-life environment that could prepare them for the hope of one day being able to fly as a family. It was an important day for the participants, but also for ADM, which is committed to making travel accessible to a growing number of passengers at YUL. A special thank you to the volunteers, our employees and our partners who made this initiative a real success.”

“As the mother of a child with autism spectrum disorder, it goes without saying that this event is very important to me,” said Chrystal Healy, Transat’s Vice President, Corporate Responsibility. “It was very touching to go on this trip with my son, and to see the positive impact it had on the other families present. I believe that this type of initiative broadens the definition of inclusivity and its application in all areas of daily life. I join Martin Massé in sincerely thanking everyone involved in making Premium Kids a reality.”

In addition to Air Transat, which has been involved since the very first edition by providing an aircraft and personnel free of charge, several other partners ensure the smooth running of the event: Autisme Montréal; the Giant Steps; Transport Canada; the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA); the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA); Securitas; HMSHost; and Montreal Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel.

This initiative is inspired by a similar programme, Wings for Autism which was launched in 2011 by the Charles River Center in collaboration with the Massachusetts Port Authority (Logan International Airport, Boston). ADM became the first airport authority in Canada to implement such a programme at YUL in 2013.

Send this to a friend