What are the best airlines for travel. Manual wheelchair, and need aisle chair for getting on and off plane.
Not sure if you are looking for domestic or international but Southwest seems to have a great reputation for accessibility.
We have good success with Southwest and Allegiant Air. They have been very courteous and careful. Twice, the gate attendant had us wait to be the last ones to board and put us in business class right by the entry door. The catch to this one is to have seats open to use. The experience has been great. We mainly flew into Orlando International and the companion bathroom is right next tot he gate we came in on. Very convenient and clean.
We like Delta. They will move you to a seat that has more room for free. It’s usually a $16 charge
Im in a power chair but southwest has done well by me, my chair and other med equipment. I gate check my chair so similar process. Always treated me well never considered flying with anyone else.
I find that most airlines will move you to Economy Comfort for free if you call ahead of time and tell them you are a paraplegic (other injury/disease) that requires you to take an aisle wheelchair. You tell them you need as short of a ride on the chair as possible.
As far as which airline is the best for getting you on and off the plane, the answer is that it does not matter which airline it is. Responsibility for getting you on and off the plane is that of the airport you are at. Some are better trained than others and some have better equipment than others.
Most airlines are pretty good about working with customers with special travel needs especially wheelchair users; it is very important to communicate what you need; each person has unique needs and it is most important for us to get it across to the airline and airport staff as clearly as possible
I have used Southwest and United. Both have been very accommodating and always trying to get me the best possible seat with the most room.
One time on United the pilot came back to make sure we were ok because we were on the same connecting flights. He wasn’t happy with where the ticket counter put us, we weren’t either as it was very uncomfortable. He got our seats moved for us and personally bought my mom and I lunch and drinks because he felt bad for where they tried to move us too. That was above and beyond what we expected.
Both really are great to work with. I’d suggest calling ahead to talk with the airline to let them know you need assistance. Also arrive at the gate early so they have time to see if there’s a better seat available. They also offer special boarding.
Thank you, for your feedback. Cheapest is not always best - we were not at all happy with Spirit Airlines.