Travel Tips

Travel can be a fantastic, enriching, and rewarding experience. But sometimes you'll encounter speed bumps. We had a chat with some of our more adventurous customers, and together made a list of things to keep an eye out for if you're travelling with a Luggie.

 

Flying

The most important thing when it comes to flying is to check everything with the airline beforehand. Airlines differ on their policies with regards to mobility aids. To start with:

  • Contact your airline's dangerous goods department. This is so they can issue you with a certificate for your Li-ion battery, which lets you take it through security and on the plane. If possible, do this a month or more in advance.
  • Additional documentation you might need can be found HERE
  • Make sure you have a protective pouch for your battery, as you will most likely be required to transport it separately to the scooter itself. Be prepared also to tape over the terminals to protect from short-circuit. The Luggie comes with a cardboard box for the battery with all the technical details labelled so that airline staff can verify them.

 

Some airlines will allow your Luggie to be stowed in a special compartment along with strollers and wheelchairs; others will require you to check them in along with your luggage. A few things to remember if you're using check-in:

  • If you're using a soft bag for your Luggie, attach fragile stickers or a photograph of it to the outside. This way, baggage handlers are far less likely to be careless.
  • If you're not using a bag at all, fold your Luggie in the flat position. In this position, the seat protects the tiller, the most vulnerable part of the Luggie.
  • If you're using a hard case, use some amount of padding on the inside, particularly around the tiller area.

 

Foreign airports can be challenging. We suggest that you:

  • Pre-arrange transportation from the airport to your accommodation. With a Luggie or other fold-up scooter, this need be nothing more than an ordinary taxi.
  • Let your airline know about your situation. This way they can organise any necessary arrangements for when you arrive.

 

Cruises

Cruising ed webMost cruises accept mobility aids, however a small minority does not. So the first step is to call up and find out. After that, here are some specifics:

  • The dimensions of the Luggie are important for when you have questions about accessing parts of the ship
  • The accessibility of beds and bathrooms. If the person you talk to is unsure, ask for pictures. This way you can eye-ball your potential accommodation yourself.
  • Not all ports are equipped with suitable docking facilities, particularly in Asia. For instance, without a multi-storey passenger terminal, your cruise ship will simply lower a ramp (often narrow and steep) down to the shore. You won't be able to use your Luggie to embark or disembark. Depending on your level of mobility, it might not be possible for you to visit a particular stop-off. Check first.

 

Trains

Train travel, whether it be from one end of Europe to the other, or a quick metro across the Seine, is perfectly possible with a Luggie. And you guessed it. Checking first with the train companies or staff at a particular train station can solve problems before they ever arise. Here are some things you should make sure to find out:

  • Station access – are there the necessary lifts and/or ramps?
  • Train access – are the carriages level with the platform? Is there a gap?
  • For longer journeys – how accessible are the dining areas, beds, and bathrooms? Again, ask for pictures if unsure.

Don't forget: It's important to find out about both your point of departure and arrival!

 

Accommodation

Say it with me folks. Call up and check! Ask for pictures if unsure!

  • Lift access – To your room, to dining and leisure areas, etc.
  • Ramp access – to the building itself, to outside areas such as pools, balconies, etc.
  • Room accessibility – bed, bathroom.

Also remember: Hotels can be a great source of information. You can use them to help you find the answers to many of the other questions here. They'll be happy to help, and often very knowledgeable.

 

Day trips

Buckingham palaceSome people like to plan out every step of their holiday. Others aim for more adventure, the thrill of tackling problems on the fly. So this section is more optional than the others. It's for those who want to make sure beforehand that everything will work out exactly as planned. So here we go:

 

  • Getting around cities is now easier than ever before. If you're concerned about how your Luggie will fare on a footpath, thoroughfare, or other outdoor area, you can always use Google street view to check first.
  • Building accessibility can also be assessed this way – though calling up and asking about interior access to that museum you've always wanted to visit probably isn't a bad idea either.
  • Flagging a taxi is likely to work, depending on where you are. Some drivers will ignore you, but persistence should pay off. The safe option is to book beforehand.
  • Bus tours can be a great way to see a lot of things quickly, but be careful: is the bus itself accessible? Is there a luggage hold to store your Luggie? Are the stop-off locations accessible? How far away do the buses park? For sites that are not accessible, are you allowed to stay on the bus?
  • Private tours? They will be more expensive, but your tour guide will be able to tailor the experience more to your needs. This way you'll cut down on wasted time.

 

Maintaining your scooter

We are happy to say that mechanical issues with the Luggie are very rare. But sometimes they do occur. Some problems can wait until you're back home, but others are more urgent. Here's what we recommend:

  • Always take a spare battery. This way you're covered against unexpected water damage and so on. Depending on where you are, this could take days to fix, as the replacement would have to be ordered in.
  • Google and/or ask your hotel about nearby mobility scooter shops. They'll likely have a technician who can do the repair job. There are Luggie dealers in many European countries as well as the USA and Canada.
  • If there are none, other options are the mechanical department of your hotel or a motorcycle shop. There's a good chance they'll be able to figure something out.
  • Travel insurance on your scooter is possible. We've found Blue Badge Insurance to be the best and most reliable

 

Most importantly!

Coffee sDon't be afraid to ask strangers for help. People all over the world just love to help out. In fact, when it comes to tourists, they'll often go out of their way to help you because they'll be thrilled that someone has, despite all the odds, come all the way across the world to visit their humble little city.

Secondly, aim high. Granted, some places are much more difficult to get to than others, but that's what can make the experience so satisfying. And things can have a habit of just working out. One of our customers was able to see the mountains and volcanoes of Iceland on her Luggie, because of the extensive boardwalks originally put in place to protect the environment. Amazing!

 

Happy travelling!