Are you planning a trip? Whether it’s business or pleasure, we want to make sure that you can still travel with your mobility and medical devices. The following are some tips below to help guide you through the process of travelling with these items.
Prepare a travel kit
The best way to be prepared is to create a travel kit. This should include all of the things you need for your trip, as well as any medical supplies and medications you need. These items can be placed in a small bag or case that will fit easily in your suitcase or carry-on. It’s also helpful to have copies of your medical records and insurance card on hand just in case something happens while travelling so that it can be easily accessed by emergency personnel if necessary.
Inform the airline about your medical device
Before you fly, let the airline know that you will be travelling with mobility or other medical devices. You can do this by using their online interactive form or by calling them directly (subject to availability).
You can let them know when it is needed and if it is a medical emergency. If your device is needed during the flight, let the airline know as soon as possible so they can help accommodate you in any way they can.
Moreover, you should inform them if you need to use an oxygen concentrator during the flight. Remember that it has to be an airline approved oxygen concentrator. If your mobility or other medical device uses an oxygen concentrator that needs to be plugged into an outlet on board, inform the airline of this ahead of time so they are aware of where it must be placed and how long it will stay plugged in for use during travel time periods.
Request an aisle seat
When you board the plane, request an aisle seat. Not only will this allow you to get up and down more easily, but it also means that if your mobile device needs to be folded or disassembled during takeoff and landing, you won’t have to worry about disturbing your fellow passengers.
Also, request that your seat remain unoccupied by another passenger for as long as possible—if at all possible—during flights. This will give you time to get settled into your chair with no distractions; even after the plane has taken off, there’s a good chance that someone will try to sit next to you before the flight attendants or other passengers ask them not to sit in certain seats due to medical equipment being present. Requesting a window seat is also beneficial on account of being able to use the armrests for balance when standing up/down from a seated position without having any obstruction from an adjacent passenger’s armrests (as there are two on each side).
Request wheelchair assistance
When you need to use a wheelchair, request it before you arrive at the airport. The airline’s automated check-in system can accommodate your request for wheelchair assistance ahead of time and will provide information about the type of lift used and where to go once you reach your departure gate. If you are travelling with a service animal, make sure to request wheelchair assistance as well. This will ensure that your companion has plenty of room for themselves and their equipment during their travels.
Wear your ID
It’s important to wear a medical alert tag or bracelet that clearly states your condition, medications, and contact information.
If you have a history of seizures and are prone to falling, consider wearing a MedicAlert ID bracelet or necklace.
If you are diabetic and have an insulin pump or take medication that requires intravenous administration such as chemotherapy drugs, wear a MedicAlert ID tag in addition to the standard bracelet.
The best way for others around you to be aware of your condition is with a visible medical alert symbol on clothing (or even just bags), so it’s also important that all medical devices be labelled with their own unique identifiers so they can easily be differentiated from other similar-looking items such as heart rate monitors or pacemakers without having someone else look at them closely first!
Make arrangements for getting to/from the airport
Before you head out, contact the airport if possible. If you’re travelling alone or with a group of people who don’t know each other, it’s smart to make arrangements for getting to/from the airport. If you can’t arrange a ride and need to take public transit, make sure your phone is fully charged so that you can use Google Maps or another navigation app to get around once you reach your destination. If needed, try asking the airline staff about nearby wheelchair-accessible restrooms; this will help ensure safe travel between terminals.
Use a gel cushion seat cover on the plane
Gel seat cushions are designed to help relieve the pressure of sitting. They come in a variety of styles and sizes and can be used by people with mobility issues, as well as those who have chronic pain. Gel seat cushions are also easy to clean and lightweight, which makes them easy to travel with. Additionally, they are very affordable!
Check available restrooms at your layover points
Before you board the plane, make sure that you have a list of restrooms at your layover points and that each one is wheelchair accessible. If it’s not, look into options for getting around; in some cases, it might be easier to just stay on the plane and wait until you arrive at your destination.
You may also want to consider bringing a foldable cane with you so that if there’s no way off the plane safely or easily, someone can help guide you down an aisle or access stairs. You can find these online or in stores in general.
If you’re travelling with a mobility device or medical device, there are several things you can do to make sure it arrives safely. The most important thing is to keep everything organized and packed well enough so that nothing gets broken. You should also be prepared in case something does go wrong while you’re travelling—such as an emergency landing due to weather conditions.
About the Author
Monica is a passionate writer and content creator. Her interests include outdoor activities, fitness, technology, entrepreneurship and everything in between. Say hi to Monica on Twitter @monical_lee.