Choosing the appropriate wheelchair, or “the one” for daily routines, can be an easy task depending on the level of disability and particular needs.
But, sometimes it can be complicated, especially if the wheelchair user is extremely active and travels a lot year after year.
Some people have no problems using lightweight wheelchairs as their main chair (or the only chair) and can still use the same wheelchair for travel.
Even air travels.
Not everyone has the same luck, and sometimes an air trip can be difficult if the wheelchair used daily is heavy and non-folding.
In this case, some users rely on a backup wheelchair specifically for road trips, air trips anywhere, and to enjoy the stay on tours at the destinations (sidewalks, museums, parks, etc.).
Fortunately, the market currently offers many brands and types of affordable lightweight wheelchairs that can be used for travel, and why not, for daily use as well.
Some are built with travel in mind as the main benefit. We will learn more about them here in this article.
As you may know, we won’t be able to point out a single wheelchair and tell you that this is the best one to purchase.
The user (or the caregiver) must pay close attention to the goals with the wheelchair.
In this case, travel is, of course, one of them, but important factors must be taken into consideration when acquiring a wheelchair for that kind of use:
Is it comfortable?
Will the user fit?
Is the wheelchair too heavy for the user?
Is it foldable?
Can it be taken into an airplane?
Is it a manual chair?
Is it electric?
Does it come with safety features?
… and the list goes.
Just make sure you know the needs of the wheelchair user, and look for the most appropriate for the physical condition.
Ask for a professional opinion with your physical therapist or family doctor before purchasing.
Once you get all this taken care of, you can look for wheelchairs for travel that can offer you the following:
Light or Ultralightweight
Proper size for the user
* Return and refund policies (which you can easily have with reputable vendors)
* Fits most car trunks (make sure you consider your travel habits and the type of car you have or use the most – like the family car or public transport).
* It is acceptable at airports (most airlines will take your chair as a volume in the cargo compartment, like any luggage, and help disabled people at departure and arrival gates with their company wheelchairs)
All these items can be observed if you are interested in purchasing a wheelchair, regardless of whether you target a standard manual wheelchair, a transport wheelchair or an electric (battery-powered) wheelchair.