Airport helps non-English speakers with language interpretation

 

Caitlin Nicholson

Airport helps non-English speakers with language interpretation

The customer service ambassador program at Orlando International Airport employs 16 individuals who speak 11 languages other than English and who are ready to assist passengers requiring language interpretation.

 While they may not be trained language interpreters, their language assistance is nevertheless appreciated by many non-English speaking passengers arriving daily at Orlando’s International Airport, who are often tired, frequently lost and, almost certainly, not sure where to turn for needed information.

Wearing their trademark gold vests, these ‘ambassadors’ fan out across the main terminal or stand behind information booths, ready to provide answers in different languages, which is their stock in trade.

“What I like best is to help people,” said Ana Rocco, a 52-year-old ambassador who speaks English, Spanish and Portuguese.

Last year, Rocco, her fellow ambassadors and 15 other people who work in customer service answered approximately 1 million questions, many in languages other than English, according to Orlando International Airport statistics.

The queries are usually simple:

Where is baggage claim? How can I get a taxi or shuttle? Is there a bathroom nearby? Is my plane on time? And where is the bus that will take me to Disney World?

According to the Orlando Sentinel, catering to international visitors is important at the airport because they represent the fastest-growing segment of the passenger count, now comprising more than 9 percent of the total annual traffic of more than 35.3 million.

“We want to make this as comfortable as possible, safe and secure,” said Debra Bouier, who runs the ambassador program.

More information on Orlando International Airport is available courtesy of the Orlando Sentinel.

 

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