Flying This Winter? Be Prepared

Whether the elderly may be flying for a vacation, or heading to a more comfortable climate this winter, preparing for the flight is important.  Special considerations must be planned for at the time of booking the flight, such as getting a motorized escort or wheelchair assistance to your departure gate, bringing a companion escort or the need for oxygen.  Here are some tips to help plan a smooth flight:

  1. Wear compression stockings– helps to prevent deep vein thrombosis (blood clots), get up and move during the flight
  2. Bring a caregiver to assist– helps to ensure your safety and ease the stressors when you have limitations. The escort may fly with you, and return after you’ve reached your destination or have the escort remain with you during your trip (ex/ wedding to assist). 
  3. Pack your carryon bag-
    1. Index card with medical history, list of medications with doses and frequency, name and phone number of your pharmacy, doctor and next of kin.
    2. Medications- keep them in their original vial, bring an empty bottle to fill with water and snacks. Bring enough if the flight is delayed. Medication to last your entire trip- may need to ask your doctor for an extended prescription.
    3. Neck pillow or blanket
  4. Oxygen-Oxygen is a hazardous material so airlines will not allow passengers to carry it onto an airplane. Some airlines may provide oxygen, but most do not, the few that do assess charges for oxygen service.  Airlines may allow passengers to bring portable oxygen concentrators (POCs). If you need oxygen and plan to fly, you’ll need to make sure your POC is on the FAA’s approved list. 

Happier at Home can help you with travel as well with our companion caregivers who can assist with travel. Find a Happier at Home near you for more information.

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