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Limitless Travel knows and understands that flying with a disability can be difficult. We've created this handy guide which details everything you need to know - from travel assistance for seniors or general wheelchair assistance, we're here to help.
You'll learn how to make the most of the disabled assistance provided at airports when you fly either for one of our disabled-friendly holidays or on your own getaway.
This information should take some of the stress out of organising your disabled holidays. From booking your ticket to disembarking the plane, everything you need to know is provided below, so flying needn’t be a daunting experience.
Remember – airport assistance is there to make your journey easier. All you really have to do is book your assistance and show up!
How to research your wheelchair assistance?
Before booking any disabled holidays or your airline ticket, it is important to find out which airlines can provide the type of wheelchair assistance you require. Each airline has a different policy, so it is best to ensure you understand what the airline can and cannot do to provide the level of wheelchair assistance you need to have a safe and accessible flight.
You should do your research with the airlines directly, either on their disabled access website page or by calling the airline via their dedicated Special Assistance contact number.
How to book Wheelchair Assistance?
When you book an airline ticket, it is advisable that you book your wheelchair assistance straight away. Airlines need plenty of notice so they can make sure that they have the right number of specialist staff on the ground. To book specialist assistance at airports, it is advisable to call the airline you have booked your tickets with and explain to them the type of assistance you will need.
The airline will book in your wheelchair assistance, and may also ask for details and dimensions of any mobility equipment you are bringing with you. It is handy to keep the dimensions, battery type, and any other important information about your wheelchair and any other mobility equipment, as it is likely you will be asked multiple times for this information at the airport.
How to plan when travelling with wheelchair assistance?
Once you have booked your airline ticket, and the airport assistance you require, it is advisable to do some planning to make your trip as smooth as possible. For example, how do you plan to get to the airport? Do you need to order a wheelchair accessible taxi? Will you need assistance with your luggage from the taxi to the Wheelchair Assistance check-in desk?
Limitless Travel can assist you with this step once you have made your booking, ensuring everything runs smoothly on the departure days of your disabled holidays.
What to do when you check into the airport?
When you arrive at the airport, you should make yourself known at the airport assistance desk. Here, you can request assistance with luggage, the use of a wheelchair, and assistance through security. The staff at the desk will inform you of how to check-in for your flight and will tell you where to meet the airport assistance staff if you do not require assistance through security.
Airports are generally very accessible, but you can also ask here for the disabled-friendly toilets to be pointed out for you.
How to spot airport assistance staff?
Airport assistance staff will always wear high visibility clothing and will be around the airport at all times. If you need assistance with something, in particular, you can call their attention. If you would prefer a qualified carer to provide you with assistance at airports, you can meet the care team at a designated airport on each and every one of our holidays.
They will be there to provide holiday care if required, as well as wheelchair assistance, and general support. Holiday care is available in a range of different package types; call Limitless Travel on 0800 069 8060 to find out more.
Please note that standard airport assistance staff will not be able to assist you with any personal care, so it is advisable that, should you need assistance in the bathroom at the airport, you purchase one of our holiday care packages.
What about aircraft assistance?
Any steps up to the aircraft are avoided by one of two ways; via ramp or via ambulift. If a ramp is being utilised, airport assistance staff will accompany to the door of the aircraft, in your own wheelchair if you are using one. Here, you will be requested to transfer into an aisle wheelchair, which will be able to fit down the aisle of the aircraft. You can then transfer into your aircraft seat.
An ambulift is a vehicle which is fitted with a lift for wheelchair access. Once you are safely secured inside, the ambulift rises to the aircraft door, and from this point onwards the procedure is the same as with a ramp.
Airports and airlines have a long way to go before they are fully wheelchair friendly and accessible, but by utilising the airport assistance staff, pre-booking your assistance and being prepared, the journey can be made slightly more pleasant.
Join Us on our Disabled Friendly Holidays
Take a break away from home on one of Limitless Travel's fully accessible holidays in fantastic destinations throughout the UK and Europe. These include Crete, Benidorm, Tenerife, Devon, Scotland and much more.
With our dedicated care team on every holiday, we guarantee you'll be looked after. Each holiday available is specifically tailored towards people with disabilities such as autism or lower mobility with fully accessible excursions and accommodation. Book your place by calling 0800 711 7232.
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