14 Ways to Make Traveling with Disabilities Easier

If you are traveling with a disability, handicap, physical disability, mobility impairment or developmental disability, have special needs, or use a power wheelchair or mobility scooter, it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can to make traveling with a disability easier.

Or if you are a mature traveler or senior who walks slowly or just want a slower pace, being better informed about disabled travel services and disabled travel aids will reduce the anxiety often associated with disabled travelers.

The following travel tips, resources and information for the disabled will make travel, travel, vacations and holidays a lot easier for you or for a child with a disability, both in the short and long term.

1. Plan your trip well in advance! Do you need to order additional supplements, order medication or renew prescriptions, repair or change prescriptions, undergo an examination, have dental work done, have your wheelchair repaired or adjusted, etc.?

2. If possible, always book your trip through a travel agency that specializes in helping people with disabilities. This is important because specialist travel agents and tour operators for the disabled are experienced and can save you a lot of headaches.

They offer many great tips and a wide range of services for the disabled traveler. They can provide, among other things: airport wheelchair, wheelchair accessible hotel room, wheelchair rental, lift equipped accessible van, full van, minibus, motorhome, handicap scooter or any other handicap vehicle.

Disability travel agents can help arrange accessible transportation, help plan the most accessible cruise, provide cruise line and cruise tips, arrange travel insurance, and arrange special needs.

Agents can check with hotels for: interior and exterior door widths for your wheelchair, ADA-approved bathtubs for the disabled, grab bars, or for roll-in showers. Just tell them your needs.

Travel agents can help you find cheap airline tickets, cheap tickets, cheap flights, cheap car insurance, cheap hotels, cheap car rentals, cheap cruises, cheap vacations and cheap trips of all kinds.

3. In addition to the telephone number of your travel agency, also include the telephone numbers of the travel agencies that specialize in travel for the disabled at your destination, in case you are unable to reach your own travel agency.

These travel agents may know how to solve problems that arise related to your hotel, car or van rental, etc., even if you did not order your tickets through them.

4. If you are traveling to another city, consult the local health and medical associations before you travel. For example, get the phone numbers for the local MS chapter if you have MS. These organizations can be great resources.

They usually know which museums, restaurants, theaters and other local facilities have wheelchair access and where you can get oxygen, emergency supplies or medical attention. They may be able to help you with any problems.

5. If you plan to rent a mobility scooter, wheelchair, electric wheelchair, disabled bus, van, minibus, RV or other vehicle in another city, don’t wait until you get there. Arrange everything before you travel.

Be sure to ask for all the details, such as lashing down, ramps or hoists, etc. Before you go, check which bus, motorhome, car or motor insurance you need.

6. Leave nothing to chance. If possible, check all arrangements made by your travel agent. Call the airlines, hotels, scooter, wheelchair, car, RV or bus rental companies, medical equipment rental companies, etc., and check the specifics, especially if you are traveling in a wheelchair or have other special needs such as oxygen.

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This is important if you have not used the agent before.

7. If you need oxygen or other special medical equipment, contact airlines and suppliers well in advance of your trip. Don’t wait until the last minute. Start calling them as soon as you know you are going to travel or are going on a trip.

Check this with your travel agent and the airline at least three to four days before your flight.

8. Arrive at the airport early. Better to wait there than to miss your plane. This eliminates some of the pre-trip anxiety you may feel and makes for more relaxed travel. This seems common knowledge, yet many people arrive at the gate just in the nick of time.

With everything going on in the world today, there are many reasons why you might want to spend more time at the airport.

9. Keep copies of prescriptions for your medicines and glasses, extra glasses, sunglasses, all your medicines and supplements, and a list of your doctor, dentist and other health professionals with their addresses and phone numbers in your airplane carry-on bag.

Include your doctor’s fax number for prescriptions in case you lose your medications. Keep duplicate copies of this in your luggage and at home by the phone. Know where your medical records are kept.

10. When you travel, and at other times too, if you are taking medicines, learn their names and exactly what they are for if you don’t know. People come to the emergency room all the time and don’t know what medicines they are taking. You may be surprised that most people say ‘a little yellow pill’ or ‘a white capsule’, etc.

Health care providers need to know what you are taking so they don’t give you drugs that will adversely affect it, overdose you, or in any way interfere with their treatment and your recovery.

11. If you are traveling by plane, please inform the flight attendants about any medical problems you may encounter during your flight upon boarding. Note the location of the nearest toilet before sitting down. Tell the flight attendant if you think you need help getting there during the flight.

You may need an aisle seat or want easy access to the restrooms. Discuss seating with your travel agent.

12. If you need someone to travel with you, ask your travel agent for ideas or suggestions. Call the local branches of medical associations and ask if they can recommend a travel assistant or companion to help or guide you.

There are national companies that provide traveling nurses, companions or travel assistants to assist disabled travelers or those with serious medical problems.

13. Be sure to bring: all medical cards, Medicare cards, discount cards, car or rental car discount cards, car insurance policy numbers and agent phone number, passport, airline tickets, e-tickets, American Express Travelers Checks, debit cards, credit cards and drivers license. Copy everything.

Keep photocopies in your luggage and at home by the phone or somewhere someone can access them in case you need it.

14. Read all about traveling with a disability. Read disabled travel books, entry guides, accessible travel guides, disabled travel articles, and travel publications for disabled travelers. Read the personal travel experiences of wheelchair users and others who have traveled with disabilities. Be informed.

These disabled travel tips, information, resources and services should help you, or anyone with a disability, disability, physical disability or who uses a wheelchair, to have an easier, more enjoyable, worry-free and hassle-free journey, tour, vacation or vacation. .