How do you feel about aircraft service?

garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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Am I the only one that feels airplanes should be more accessible?

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  • BrookeUBrookeU Posts: 176Moderator Moderator
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    edited March 10
    You are definitely not alone in feeling that way! The fact that my brother is always the last one on and last one off is ridiculous, having to be brought through the aisles on that tiny chair they use. Also, no accessible restrooms. A couple of years ago, we were on a flight and he needed to empty his catheter bag. We asked the flight attendant for a cup, which I would obviously take to the restroom to dump when it was full. She said no, and we explained to her that it was absolutely necessary. Then she went to ask the pilot if that was "okay." Eventually, we got the cup. But the fact that her fear of us disturbing other passengers (we were going to be as discreet as possible anyway) was more important than his well-being was disgusting. Another time, the airline didn't put his wheelie bars back on properly (not sure why they needed to be taken off in the first place), and when he got on the people-mover in the airport, he fell back and had to go to the hospital and get stitches in his head. Also, the incredibly invasive pat-downs from TSA that he has to deal with. The list goes on...

    We're actually flying to Washington DC together tomorrow, so fingers crossed there are no big mishaps! I previously blogged about traveling with my brother, here's the link: https://www.christopherreeve.org/blog/life-after-paralysis/traveling-with-paralysis-from-a-siblings-point-of-view. I'd love to know if anyone has any travel tips we may not have thought of before!
  • BrookeUBrookeU Posts: 176Moderator Moderator
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  • youngatheartyoungatheart Posts: 6Member
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    @BrookeU that needs to change. Where I'm from the people that use wheelchairs, canes, walkers are first! It should be like that everywhere. We wait until that person is comfortable on the plane. They are seated close to the door for easy access out. Yes, the wheel chair is a tiny on and that needs to change and also accessibility to the bathrooms also needs to be updated. Definately planes and procedures needs updating.
  • cruiseybabbbycruiseybabbby Posts: 18Moderator Moderator
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    @garrisonredd Yeah man I'm in total agreement! It doesn't seem too far-fetched for airlines to designate a few custom style seats or areas where our wheelchairs could be locked in (like in a motor vehicle). That would make the process much quicker (for everyone) as well as less strenuous on the airline employees and us, the wheelchair users!
  • garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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    Thanks @BrookeU
    we need to find a way for airlines and aircrafts manufactures to make some changes to accommodate us
  • ZcollieZcollie Posts: 209Moderator Moderator
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    Great topic and conversation! @garrisonredd I have only flown a couple of times and although I did not have any bad experiences there could be improvements on the accessibility in airplanes
    Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be. -SONIA RICOTTI
  • garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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    Too bad I can't say the same once American airlines left my wheelchair in the under carriage and it took them over an hr to retrieve it @Zcollie
  • garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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    Exactly @cruiseybabbby and its 2019 the designs of some automobiles can pretty much fit two wheelchairs in a normal size sedan a wheelchair still cant get in the restroom on an airplane and the training can be improved as well  :'(
  • SterlionSterlion Posts: 84Moderator Moderator
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    I have asked a pilot about having tie downs for people in wheelchairs and he explained that it wouldn't be safe. Everything on planes is either bolted or locked in place including the passenger seats. One of the only problems that I have had was needing to use the restroom during a flight. I had to cath in my seat while my mom stood in the aisle holding a blanket for my privacy.
  • garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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    I had that issue before also I typically wear a leg bag only on flights since I often fly by myself but thats something I  did before when I flew with a companion @Sterlion

  • ZcollieZcollie Posts: 209Moderator Moderator
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    Sorry you had that experience :/@garrisonredd
    Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be. -SONIA RICOTTI
  • BrookeUBrookeU Posts: 176Moderator Moderator
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    @youngatheart, my brother and I just flew to Washington DC a few days ago, and we actually got to board first for a change! I’ll be posting all about our trip (we have quite a story that occurred yesterday), so I’ll have more details there!
  • ZcollieZcollie Posts: 209Moderator Moderator
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    @BrookeU When you fly do you usually board last? Whenever I have flown I get board first and unloaded last. 
    Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be. -SONIA RICOTTI
  • iamdadmaniamdadman Posts: 178Moderator Moderator
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    I have flown a number of times since being injured and yes it does suck.  I will give an unsolicited plug to JetBlue airlines.  I have had as great an experience as can be expected.  The flight attendants are always so helpful and caring.  I always board first and get off last.  I usually self-cath before getting on the plane and then use a leg bag so I don't have to worry about trying to empty it during the flight.  I will say that in my role as a Reeve Regional Champion, I have been involved in federal legislation about airline accessibility and there is pending legislation meant to improve airline accessibility.  Even to the point where creating space on the plane so people can stay in their wheelchairs is included to be looked at by the airlines.
  • suzsuz Posts: 4Moderator Moderator
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    Hey everyone!
    Due to my job I am a very frequent flyer now (often long haul from London to San Francisco) and I agree it can be a pretty horrendous ordeal.
    @BrookeU - have you come across a TravelJohn before? I have found them to be awesome for flying... saves having to empty a leg bag into a cup. As you empty into the bag, the crystals make it turn to a more solid substance so that the bag can't spill. And it neutralises the smell etc. I've found them really really useful.. https://www.amazon.com/Travel-John-TravelJohn-Disposable-Urinal-pack/dp/B07C84MRMP


  • BrookeUBrookeU Posts: 176Moderator Moderator
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    @Zcollie, yes, in the past we've usually boarded last. That product is wild, @suz! I had never heard of it, so thanks for sharing!!
  • ZcollieZcollie Posts: 209Moderator Moderator
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    @suz Thank you for sharing that! I have never heard about anything like that before. Great to know something like that exists! 
    Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be. -SONIA RICOTTI
  • garrisonreddgarrisonredd Posts: 129Moderator Moderator
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    I would love to feature that on the next episode of disability news report take a look at my last episode and provide me with some more topics if you do not mind
    https://youtu.be/zhBkvj02M3g
  • iamdadmaniamdadman Posts: 178Moderator Moderator
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    @garrisonredd
    Thanks for letting us know about your youtube channel.  I will be sure to check it out...
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