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Flying With Crutches?

Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:03 pm

OK. So this is the first time I'll be flying while disabled. SFO-DTW and back on NW/DL. For those who don't follow non-av, I'm non-weight-bearing on my left leg due to a ruptured achilles tendon that is today two weeks post-op. In 7 days, I am flying. I already alerted NW to the fact that I'm disabled. I cannot walk at all.

Can someone tell me what to expect?

1) I assume I'll get a wheelchair to the gate. I'll be checking my baggage and I'm sure a skycap will have to help me with that.
2) What happens to my crutches when it's time to board? I assume I qualify for early boarding. Will my crutches go in the hold? Will I get wheeled to my seat?
3) I'm renting a car at DTW. Does anyone know how I can get help getting my bags to the rental shuttle? I'm assuming a skycap again, right?

Thanks in advance for any help anyone here can provide.
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
-Carl Sagan
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Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 8:48 pm

RE: Flying With Crutches?

Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:20 pm

Sorry to hear about your misfortune but trust things are improving.

I have traveled with my 86 year old semi handicapped mother on a few occasions and found the Delta crews to be most helpful. And prior to that, a trip on NW where again the crew was most helpful. Early boarding shouldn’t be a problem. The bags and skycap situation should be doable as long as you tip well. Have the money out so they see it and make sure it is about $10 to $20 depending on how much effort and time it will take for the person helping you. Not sure about the crutches. I would think you might ask that they carry them on board in the event you need them to get to the head. Good luck.
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RE: Flying With Crutches?

Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:34 pm

My experience with crutches was pretty easy. Your crutches will be stored on board. If you can walk with crutches, you may do that down the aisle so you don't need to have a wheel chair on the plane. Hand them to the flight attendant and they will put them away in a closet or tucked away somewhere. If you need them at anytime, the crew should be able to bring them to you. Cabin crew are usually extra helpful to those who are disabled for reasons like you have. Just have a smile on your face.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
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RE: Flying With Crutches?

Fri Sep 25, 2009 3:37 am


Sorry to hear about your injury; I wish you a speedy recovery. I would show up for check in a bit earlier than normal, just to make sure they have a wheelchair and attendant ready for you. Honestly I think it will be fine; my company always seems to genuinely go out of their way to help disabled passengers. I have also flown accompianing my mother, a severe rheumatoid arthritic (wheelchair bound) on several occasions, and the crews have always been helpful.(Yes, I'm sure you can find horror stories, but they are in the minority.) I agree with the others that you will almost certainly be able to stow your crutches in the cabin. During deplaning expect to wait until the end for the wheelchairs to come down the jetway for you. Gate agents sometimes change between your arrival at the gate and dispatch of the flight, so make sure that the agent working the flight knows you are there and what assistance you need.

Best of luck with your trip and in your recuperation!
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RE: Flying With Crutches?

Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:49 am

Thanks, guys, for your help.
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
-Carl Sagan

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