Air travel with a scooter

hi all

im going to Mexico in a few weeks with my family. I recently got a mobility scooter as my walking has deteriorated recently. Just asking whether anyone else has travelled on a plane with their scooter and if it was ok or did they have problems? Do you get to ride it to the plane or hand it over at check in?



Mexico sounds exciting. Taking a scooter, just look on the airlines website. Say you need assistance and they will ask what you need. I’ve taken wheelchairs on flights no problems. They wheeled me right to the aeroplane door then took the the chair from me. The airline usually just asked for dimensions, weight and type o battery, all on original documents.

Maybe with a scooter you’ll have to give them it earlier so it can go in the hold. I think they take the battery into the cabin for safety.

Just phone the airline, they’ll tell you everything.

Have a good trip!


I have taken my scooter several times with Thomas Cook. As Jen said need to speak to airline in advance and confirm by e mail. You drive it up to the gate and then they put it in the hold and wheel you into the plane on a wheelchair. You need to carry the battery into the plane so hope it is lightweight. I go from Manchester so coming back they wheel you to the baggage collection and mine comes back there, the staff stay with you till you reclaim it. Bertie

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Travelling by aircraft seems a daunting experience for anyone Disabled in wheelchair or not, but in reality it isn’t it can be a seamless experience as you are helped every step of the way, (that’s not meant as a pun).

I worked for British Airways for 26 years, as such travelled to many parts of the World. In fact in 1988 I travelled twice around the World, some 48,000 miles in 5 days on aircraft, sponsored for Charity. Not something I would recommend but shows you it is possible.

Stick to these guidelines and you will really enjoy the experience. First on booking your flight tell them you would like assistance from check-in to the gate. This could be a wheelchair with someone pushing or a lift on a Golf type buggy. The gate could be over one mile away so don’t think your doing any favour’s by not asking for help. The aircraft has a certain slot for take off, if you are late because of walking difficulties, THE AIRCRAFT HAS TO GO without you, otherwise it costs mega bucks.

If you have problems walking down the isle when you get aircraft side, no problem, quite a few aircraft now have small wheelchairs especially to take people up and down the isle. If you can’t walk whatsoever, no problem, tell them and facilities will be put in place from check-in to take you to the aircraft by ambulance, high lift you to the aircraft and trained medical staff to lift you in the seat. The golden rule here is ‘tell them.’

With some airlines you can pre-book your seat. If so get one that has more leg room and near the toilets, probably a bulkhead seat. The Civil Aviation Authority has made a ruling that no Disabled person can have a seat by an Emergency Exit for obvious reasons.

If for some reason you get to your destination and your wheelchair is missing or worse still damaged it is the airlines, or should I say good airlines signed up to something called the Haig Protocol to restore or repair your chair, see the airlines staff.

I remember I went to San Diego from Gatwick once and they left my chair behind. I was in a rush had to go down to Tijuana and the only one they had to loan me had a large sign above my head saying ‘AVIS Rent a Car.’ The times I was stopped in my Hotel by people saying “hey fella, where can I get a car.”

Have a good time, don’t worry as far as flying is concerned you will be looked after.

As a matter of interest wheelchairs go to the front of any que. Do not think you are being rude you and your pusher go to the front.

I presume your going to the Cancun side of Mexico, cannot advise what it is like; never been there. If for some reason your going to Tijuana be prepared for a long wait at the crossing into Mexico from the USA at San Ysidro

; could take about 4 hours.

If your flying to San Diego or Los Angles might be easier to hire one their? You don’t want to get to wherever and your scooter is damaged. Again speak to your airline, they will advise you where to hire one and arrange to be waiting for you on arrival.

Have a lovely trip


Thanks so much everyone for your responses. Has reassured me a lot.

I have informed the airline (tui) and given all the details they requested. We also paid to be upgraded to premium economy so that we had more leg room and so we could choose the seats (near to loos for me and kids) and also to try and make it more comfortable.

Fingers crossed there will be no traumas.

George how do they get you down the stairs from the aircraft if they don’t have a tunnel attached? If you know?

If you can’t walk at all and the aircraft is off-stand they have high-lift lorries used for catering and bars that will lift you up to the aircraft door; outside then trained medical staff will lift you into your a/c seat. Reverse to come down, one thing I will warn you; going to the toilet when the a/c is in the air. The Cabin Crew are not allowed to help you on the toilet, suggest you talk to your GP or MS nurse, there are ways around this. g

Thanks George

luckily I shouldn’t need any assistance with the lavatory so fingers crossed this shouldn’t be a problem

thanks again