Submitted on Wednesday December 26th, 2012
Is your older relative traveling by air anytime soon? Use these suggestions for an easier, less confusing trip.
- Check in with the doctor. Get an "okay" for travel by air. Ask for a note to support the need for early boarding, a wheelchair, or any other special assistance.
- Book by phone. Look for nonstop flights at less crowded times: midday and midweek. Get a seat with easy access to the lavatory. Ask about help with check-in, security, boarding, and for wheelchairs at both airports, if needed.
- Prepare carry-on items. Put nametags on all carry-on items, including a cane or walker. Don't forget dignity items such as briefs, wipes, or a change of undergarments. Gather health insurance card, doctor contact information, and a current list of medications. Keep all medications in a separate baggie in their original bottles.
- Contact TSA. Older travelers are allowed to have one person help them to the gate. Call the Transportation Security Administration’s hotline (855-787-2227) at least 72 hours ahead of travel to request airport support through security or to meet your family member at the gate upon arrival.