Don’t Be Blasé16 November 2015
Here with our second guest post, Rebecca from “World in a Wheelchair” tells a cautionary tale about what can happen if you neglect to double check your arrangements before going on holiday.
(Or, you can always book through reliable disabled-friendly booking agent such as Enable Holidays who will double check for you…)
As a regular, disabled, visitor to Oslo, Norway, I had not given a recent trip much thought beforehand. However, I should have known…
Never take your eye off the ball!
When booking the flight on Norwegian from Gatwick, I had filled out the specific box to inform the airline of my special needs as a ‘carry on’ passenger. I checked in at the airport, agreed to be met at the gate and all seemed to be going very smoothly.
At the gate, however, as the flight prepared to board, a member of staff who had been sent to help me onto the aircraft realised there was no carry on chair for me to use. Instead of being seated first, I was taken to the plane door and had to watch the other passengers board.
Eventually the chair arrived and knowing some passengers may already be annoyed by the delay, I then had to annoy them more by being seated at the very back of the plane instead of the usual front.
Finally the journey begun and all seemed fine … until I got to Oslo.
Scandinavian rules allow disabled hotel rooms to have a stand- alone stool in the wet room instead of a fixed seat. I find this a dangerous decision so always opt to stay in what seems to be the only hotel in the city to have a foldable chair fixed to the wall (and is also one of the most expensive!) I had been told the hotel was under renovation but would hopefully be finished by my arrival but this, of course, did not happen! As lovely as my room was, it still had the dreaded, low, stall meaning I could only wash at the sink!
My short trip acted as a reminder that as a disabled traveller, you must always double check every arrangement, however simple it seems.
Rebecca, from World in a Wheelchair