Over the course of time, air travel has greatly improved and made easier for all wheelchair travelers. However, that doesn’t mean that you should not plan ahead.Air travel can be a particularly long and cumbersome journey, especially if you’ve been cramped up in the economy class of an overbooked flight. To make the air trip easier, here are 5 simple and effective flight tips all wheelchair travelers need to keep in mind:
Choose the Right Airline
All airlines are bound by laws and regulations that require the staff to facilitate wheelchair travelers in any and every way. However, some airline companies provide better customer care services than others. Before you book a flight, obtain a few recommendations from disabled fliers. Check out their social media pages and view the comments. If the airline company does not have a lot of favorable reviews and wheelchair travelers frequently complain, then it’s best not to book a ticket with them.
Know Your Rights
Whether you’re traveling within or outside the U.S. or any other country, there are some laws specifically designed for wheelchair and other disabled travelers. These rules protect them from harassment and discrimination and offer them complete assistance with respect to seating, luggage handling and other benefits. Furthermore, wheelchair travelers are also entitled to certain privileges- free of cost. Read up as much as you can about the air travel rules in your area so as to have a pleasant flight without getting into any altercation with the airline crew.
Go for the Best Seat
If you’re a frequent wheelchair traveler, you know the importance of choosing the right seat and its impact on your flight experience. If you fear being bumped by beverage carts, then do not go for an aisle seat. If you’re claustrophobic, then a window seat might not be the best option for you. It is always best to upgrade to Executive Class. But if you do not have the resources, then there are certain apps that allow you to find the best coach seats. Talk to the ticketing staff, before choosing any seat.
Opt for Connecting Flights
For long-distance journeys, especially the ones over the Atlantic Ocean, there are two options: take a direct flight or a connecting flight. Several business executives and frequent travelers opt for direct flights to save time and build up their travel miles. If you’re confined to traveling on a wheelchair, you might not be able to sit for too long. It is best to take a connecting flight that requires a stopover in between. Such flights are cheaper too.
Relax and Enjoy
Just because you’re traveling on a wheelchair does not mean that you can’t have some fun! Talk to the airline staff before boarding and in-flight. Let them know that you’ll need their assistance and support. Pre-arrange your transport so that you won’t have to spend your entire flight worrying about how you’ll have to find a cab once you get off the plane. Watch your favorite movies and listen to songs along the way.