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Last Updated on December 3, 2020

If you’re about to travel with your elderly parent, you should know that there is assistance at the airport for the elderly. That said, while there is flight assistance for elderly passengers, there is a bit of weight on your shoulders when it comes to planning ahead and planning properly. Image of an airplane window for an article about flight assistance for elderly passengers.

From choosing the best airline for your elderly parent to researching which seat location is best for them in their aircraft, depending on their mobility issues, you may have some work cut out for you—but the good news is, there is help at the airport for the elderly.

Read on to learn more about the specifics of this help, as well as more travel tips for senior citizens that can also help your trip go more smoothly.

Flight Assistance for Elderly Passengers: Travel for Seniors with Disabilities

If you are traveling with an elderly parent who has a mobility issue or a physical disability, you may need specific air travel assistance for the elderly. Most flights will have ADA accommodations in this day and age, but you don’t want to be too confident that your specific seat will.

If you’re traveling with someone who is in a wheelchair, you want to be absolutely sure that:

  • The bathroom on the plane their seat is closest to is ADA-compliant and wheelchair accessible
  • Their seat has a movable armrest
  • There is not an exit row seat blocking their wheelchair (if it is being used as a seat on the plane) 

In these situations, when you book, you may find that you may not want to go through a discount booking site to get flight assistance for elderly passengers—you may want to use a travel agent or call the airline directly. 

Airlines can also offer other airport assistance for the elderly or the disabled, for those who do not have a physical disability, such as assistance for those with low vision or blindness, or for those who have hearing loss or deafness. It is often best in these situations to speak with the airline directly to get flight assistance for elderly passengers.

Flight Assistance for Elderly Passengers: Flying with a Wheelchair 

If you’re wondering, how do I travel with elderly parents? particularly if they are in a wheelchair, there are some things to think about before the flight. First, try to know the layout of the parking at the airport. While you’ll have access to handicapped parking, you may still need to take a shuttle to the terminal. You’ll want to know all this information. 

Make sure the wheelchair is in good condition before the flight, as you may have to disassemble and reassemble parts of it. You may be using the wheelchair as a seat, or you may not (this is information you must know well before your flight). 

Be sure to label different parts of the wheelchair, should some become lost. Practice disassembling the wheelchair prior to your flight, and include simple instructions on the back of the wheelchair should airline staff need to disassemble it for storage. 

While you expect flight assistance for elderly passengers to come to you, it also helps if you provide some help of your own.

Flight Assistance for Elderly Passengers: Other Health Issues

Traveling with the elderly can be challenging, and there are just a few more things to keep in mind. If your parent has mobility issues but doesn’t regularly use a wheelchair, it may be a good idea to take advantage of the airport wheelchairs. This can move you through the terminal much faster but also go a long way when it comes to airport assistance for seniors. This also allows your parent to keep their strength. 

Also, pre-flight, make sure medications that need to be packed are packed, and those that need to be in the carry-on are with you on the flight. Also, make sure your parent’s physician’s information is readily available at all times. Lastly, if they have any serious medical issues, it’s a good idea to have that in writing and on hand during the flight. 

To hear more tips about flight assistance for elderly passengers, or to hear about mobility products that can be life-changing, such as stairlifts or wheelchair ramps, contact Williams Lift Co. today.

We want both caregivers and their loved ones to live their best lives.