Designed to give you back your freedom and independence, mobility scooters are the ideal way to get around if walking is a struggle, enabling you to travel further distances than you’d be able to do so otherwise. But what can you do if you want to travel abroad by plane? Is it safe to take your scooter with you? To answer these questions we’ve done some research into what you can do before boarding to ensure you’ll be comfortable throughout your journey and will be able to relax once you land.
If your mobility scooter is your most prized possession then thinking about how you’re going to get around whilst on holiday abroad can make you incredibly anxious. To help ease your mind we’ve looked into how you can take your scooter with you when flying, with the following tips designed to ensure that everything runs smoothly.
- Research: Carry out as much research as possible before booking your flights. While picking the cheapest airline can save you money they may not provide the highest quality of service, especially when it comes to taking your mobility scooter with you. Search online for the terms and conditions listed by your chosen airline (see below) or contact their customer services team to find out more.
- Arrange help: Whether you decide to book your holiday via the internet or in-store through a travel agent it’s advised you make them aware of your requirements. You must also let your airline know at least 48 hours before your flight so that they can make adjustments for you. Contact their customer services team to arrange help and assistance.
- Check the battery: While many users will already be aware of the type of battery their mobility scooter uses, when travelling by plane it’s something you should definitely know. While non-spillable wet/dry cell batteries are (generally) deemed safe, lithium batteries will need to be removed from the scooter frame when boarding to avoid short-circuiting. However, there is an alternative to dismantling your scooter or removing the battery – why not try the Airsafe Plug (£29.99 – VAT Relief included)? Compact enough to be kept in your pocket, this plug inserts into the charging socket of any mobility scooter/powerchair to disable the batteries, preventing them from powering the mechanics and therefore making it safe to travel. With flying already a stressful experience why put yourself through more?
Size & Type
To ensure the airline is able to accommodate for your mobility scooter you’ll need to inform them of its type and measurements. While 6-8mph and pavement models would be too bulky and heavy to take onboard, compact travel types that can be split into sections or packed away are ideal. Search for the airline’s rules and regulations online and compare the measurements stated to the size of your scooter. It’s also advised that you take your user manual with you as proof.
Following are three of our most popular travel mobility scooter models. To see the entire range of scooters CareCo stock please click here.
- CareCo AirLite: Able to be split into five sections, with the heaviest part weighing only 2.2st/14kg, the AirLite is compact, lightweight and nippy, able to get you around the airport with ease. Maximum user weight: 18st/114kg.
- CareCo Eclipse: Unlike many other models the Eclipse is able to be folded onto itself, allowing you to stand the scooter upright within its own footprint, saving you space and time. Maximum user weight: 18st/114kg.
- CareCo Zoom: The Zoom is one of our most popular models and is the ideal solution if you want to get around quickly and without a fuss. Fitted with a delta tiller bar you can perform precise, safe manoeuvres without exerting yourself, ensuring you’re comfortable for the entirety of your journey. Maximum user weight: 20st/127kg.
If you’re currently researching your options and haven’t found a scooter suited to your needs then you have the option of hiring one once you land. When booking your holiday and flights let your travel agent know that you require assistance when walking around the airport/when you arrive and they’ll be able to arrange a wheelchair/scooter for you. They can also help you hire equipment that can be delivered to your hotel, enabling you to enjoy your holiday without worrying about your mobility issues.
You can also access further information through Direct Gov here.