Orlando International Airport (MCO) last week debuted its own Sunflower Lanyard program, providing a discreet extra layer of assistance for those coping with issues such as low vision, hearing loss, autism, anxiety disorders, learning disabilities or mobility issues.
The voluntary, self-identification program was first used at London’s Gatwick Airport (LGW) in 2016 and incorporates colorful green lanyards, adorned with sunflowers. The lanyards have since been adopted by airports around the world.
“Not all disabilities are visible and this program allows our staff to subtly identify those in need of an extra level of customer service and make sure that everyone, no matter what their circumstance, has a good Orlando experience,” says Brian Engle, director of customer experience for the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority (GOAA), operator of MCO.
The free lanyards are for travelers only and are available at the third level information booths in the main MCO terminal just prior to entering security. While they do provide a discreet signal to employees, wearing a lanyard does not guarantee fast tracking through security or any preferential TSA treatment, the airport said.