Christmas ad accessibility: Heathrow

December 23rd – in readiness for families arriving and visiting we are looking at Heathrow ‘Coming home for Christmas’

To catch up on the previous reviews all are linked to on our Christmas Advert advent countdown.


The Heathrow advert doesn’t have any spoken words, although there is a song with words playing over the advert. It would have been great to see captions displaying the song and the words to accompany the advert and the teddy bears journey.

Audio description

Like many of the adverts there is no audio description version, but as there are no captions there are no audio clues as to what is happening within the advert making this impossible for a blind person to know what is going on by just watching the video.


Heathrow have included details of the song playing in the advert plus a link to find out more about the bears unfortunately though this link doesn’t lead to a transcript of the advert excluding those who are blind from following the story of the bears or the imagery of the grandparents meeting their family after the flight.

Accessible video player

Heathrow have created a microsite dedicated to the bears and their Christmas journey, whilst the video itself is hosted on YouTube and the YouTube video player is embedded within the site the landing page from the YouTube description does not allow you to navigate using your keyboard only to the ‘watch video’ button. This can only be selected using a mouse. As well as blind people not using a mouse, other people with mobility disabilities will also be prevented from viewing the video this way.

The verdict

There has been little consideration to accessibility with this advert and the website being built as it is also stops people with sight loss and some mobility disabilities from watching the video.