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Holiday Advice Please

livliv Member Posts: 16 Listener
edited November 2014 in Parents and carers
Hi, we have two year old twins, one of whom has quadraplegic CP. He is unable to sit unsupported or feed himself yet is very 'switched on' and tries really hard to achieve even the smallest of things. I think his twin brother is a big help!
We are going to attempt a family holiday to Mallorca later this year with my parents in law. I'm so looking forward to it but there are a lot of things that worry me.....I wondered if anyone has any advice on travelling with a disabled child or experiences to share?

Should we take out special travel insurance?
Will his special pushchair survive the plane journey?
Has anyone come across any hire companies in Mallorca for specialist equipment - speciffically a feeding chair?
We have had to book a seat for him on the plane however he won't be able to sit in it and will need to sit on our knee.....has anyone experienced any problems with this?
Is it easy to travel with bulky equipment if we decide to loan a 'tumble form' chair?

Would love to hear from you......
Thanks

Replies

  • Pumpkin-ukPumpkin-uk Member Posts: 2
    Hi, we have two sons, the youngest of whom has athetoid cp and like your son he doesn't sit unsupported. We have done afew holidays abroad with them. Our advice is:
    -get insurance just incase. There are afew companies who will provide cover such as All clear - if poss all get insurance with same company as if any thing did happen they pay for your return flights so one of you at least can stay out there if needed.
    - ask for assistance onto the flight as they let u board first giving you abit extra time and an extra pair of hands, and means you can take your special buggy right to the plane
    - re buggy I won't lie we did have one flight where it was broken. Best to take off any pieces that come off, print off some wheelchair signs and stick them onto the base and the seat and then if you can cling film the two together. The flight assistance will tell the other end it is a wheelchair and they should bring it to the plane door- dont think it's okay I'll carry them as some terminals can be huge and a killer with kids and bags
    - the DDA doesn't cover planes, ships or trains!!! However, monarch are excellent and Thomas cook are good the latter has one special needs seat and monarch have several, you need to contact the airline before you fly and complete a form and it will all be ready fixed in for you. If you aren't flying with these you can purchase your own flight seat but these aren't cheap approx
  • Pumpkin-ukPumpkin-uk Member Posts: 2
    I did reply but it doesn't appear to have shown- maybe there's a delay. If it doesn't appear by tomorrow I'll re type it all out again :)
  • MonkfishMonkfish Member Posts: 1
    HI Liv,
    I can't help with a lot of the questions you raise, but I have experience of air travel with poeple with a range of physical disabilities, all I can say is, whenever we have put wheelchairs in the hold, they have never been damaged, and ideed, the baggage handlers do seem to take extra care with wheelchairs. AS for your other queries, can your travel agent help with that kind of info, or if you haven't booked yet, why not get in touch with one of the specialist companies like Access Travel (no, I don't work for them) but they seem to be pretty good at what they do, so they might know if specialist equipment can be hired in Mallorca, it is one of their destinations I think.
    Good luck and happy holidays,
    Monk
  • renacahillrenacahill Member Posts: 145
    Pumpkin. Your message goes to scope for vetting before appearing - hence time lag. Thank heavens you didnt need to re type!
    Very interesting re travelling, sounds a bit daunting but as you say worth every minute. Hope poster has a lovely holiday with the family.
  • b8sb8s Member Posts: 33
    Hi,
    I have taken my little girl on holiday and found it to be a really positive experience. We didn't have any trouble getting travel insurance, although we did had to pay a little more than usual,but not considerably more. Monarch airline were great, I spoke to them in advance and they e-mailed me diagrams of the seating they were able to offer so I could look at it with our OT and then just returned a short booking form for the seat via e-mail. We were able to take the wheelchair to the plane and it was waiting for us when we disembarked. We were also given the seats with extra legroom so we had room to 'manual handle,' all we needed was a letter from the GP confirming this space was needed for medical reasons and there was no charge.
    I used her wheelchair as a feeding chair, which although not ideal worked fine for holiday.
    When I was making enquiries for this holiday the travel agents said some airlines will let you use your carseat on the plane, but again you need to phone the airlines themselves to find out what their policies are, most are really helpful.
    With a little planning most issues can be resolved.
    Hope you have a really great holiday.
  • livliv Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Thank you all for your helpful and positive advice...I am now on the case!! Thanks again.
  • HymerkarHymerkar Member Posts: 63 Courageous
    Hi Liv,

    I am not in a position to offer the advice you are looking for, but hope what I have to say will be of interest. I am an adult with CP and although I don't have a lot of experience with airlines, I have travelled with EasyJet and Monarch on a couple of occasions and cannot fault either company. They carried my electric wheelchair without any problem what so ever. I rang the airline and made sure they were expecting me, and they dealt with it all from there. On Monarch I paid extra to book the front seats with extra legroom and although I had to pay
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