6 Vital Tips for Travelling With A Motorised Wheelchair

6 Vital Tips for Travelling With A Motorised Wheelchair

6 Vital Tips for Travelling With A Motorised Wheelchair

Travelling with a motorised wheelchair can be an empowering experience for elderly individuals, allowing them to explore the world more freely. However, it also comes with its unique set of challenges. Preparation and understanding the intricacies involved can make the journey smoother and more enjoyable. 

Here are six vital tips for travelling with a motorised wheelchair.

1. Plan and research thoroughly

The foundation of any successful trip with a motorised wheelchair starts with thorough planning and research. Begin by investigating your destination's accessibility features. Look for hotels that offer accessible rooms with roll-in showers, lower beds, and sufficient manoeuvring space for wheelchairs. Check public transportation options to see if they accommodate motorised wheelchairs. Many cities have accessible buses, trains, and even taxis, but availability can vary widely.

Additionally, plan your activities with accessibility in mind. Many museums, parks, and attractions provide detailed information on their websites about wheelchair accessibility, including ramps, elevators, and accessible restrooms. Consider calling ahead to confirm these details and ask any specific questions about your needs. 

2. Understand your wheelchair’s specifications

Knowing the specifications and limitations of your motorised wheelchair is crucial. This includes understanding its dimensions, weight, battery life, and the type of terrain it can handle. Airlines and other transportation providers often have restrictions on the size and weight of mobility devices, so make sure your wheelchair complies with these requirements.

Familiarise yourself with the battery type of your wheelchair. Lithium-ion batteries are commonly used in motorised wheelchairs, but they have specific regulations for air travel. Contact your airline well in advance to understand their policies on transporting such batteries and ensure you have all necessary documentation. 

3. Prepare for air travel

Air travel with a motorised wheelchair requires special preparation. When booking your flight, inform the airline about your wheelchair and any assistance you may need at the airport. Arrive at the airport early to allow extra time for security checks and boarding procedures. 

Ensure your wheelchair is properly labelled with your contact information. Consider attaching instructions for handling and operating your wheelchair for the airline staff. It’s also wise to carry a toolkit with basic repair items and a backup mobility aid, such as a manual wheelchair, in case of damage or malfunction.

4. Pack smart

Packing efficiently is key to a stress-free trip. In addition to your regular travel essentials, bring extra parts and supplies for your motorised wheelchair, such as spare batteries, chargers, and any tools needed for minor repairs. A portable ramp can be incredibly useful for navigating curbs and steps.

Don't forget personal care items that cater to your needs, like medications, cushions, and any adaptive equipment that helps you stay comfortable during your travels. Packing a first-aid kit tailored to your specific health needs is also a good idea.

5. Choose accessible transportation

Getting around at your destination requires accessible transportation options. Research and arrange for accessible car rentals, taxis, or rideshare services. Many cities offer specialised transportation services for elderly individuals, often at a lower cost than traditional taxis. 

Public transportation can also be a viable option, but it's important to verify that the routes you plan to take are fully accessible. In some cases, you may need to book accessible transportation in advance, especially in areas where services for people with mobility challenges are limited.

6. Stay informed about your rights

Understanding your rights as an older traveller with mobility needs can help you advocate for yourself and ensure you receive the necessary accommodations. In many countries, there are laws and regulations in place to protect the rights of travellers with mobility needs, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the United States or the European Accessibility Act in the EU. Similarly, in Singapore, most MRT stations and buses are equipped with features such as ramps, priority seats, and designated spaces for wheelchairs. Additionally, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) has guidelines to ensure that transportation services cater to the needs of individuals with mobility challenges. 

Familiarise yourself with these laws and the services available to you. Knowing your rights can help you navigate potential issues and ensure that you receive fair treatment throughout your journey.


Travelling with a motorised wheelchair requires careful planning and preparation, but the rewards of new experiences and adventures make it well worth the effort. By following these tips, you can ensure a smoother, more enjoyable trip.

If you're looking for reliable personal mobility aids (PMAs) to enhance your travel experience, Falcon Mobility offers a range of solutions, including mobility scooters and other essential devices, to help you stay mobile and independent. Explore Falcon Mobility today to find the perfect aid for your needs. 

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