First-Time Flyer
I flew for the first time last year, and while it was not the worst experience, it did have its ups and downs

[“Taming Our Fear of Flying,” April 2014]. I do think there needs to be further training with TSA, the crew that helps with transferring people into and out of their wheelchairs, and the ground crew that handles storing the wheelchairs. I do like all the tips in the story, some of which I used when I flew and some I did not know about. I do hope to travel again.
Tiffany Poland

Tips From Frequent Flyer
Good article [“Taming Our Fear of Flying”], but as a C6 quad who takes about 30 flights a year for my work, the information provided is incomplete in terms of helping those who do not fly or are afraid to fly. Here are some tips I have found to be helpful:

Your airline choice matters, but often you will not have a choice of carriers unless you are going from one major airport to another. Your wheelchair will not fit on 95 percent of planes. Even if it fits, it will only get to a few seats that are emergency row seats by the cabin door. You may not be allowed to sit there. Bathrooms are not accessible on planes. I’ve never seen one in over 200 flights. Bring two empty Tropicana orange juice jars in a plastic shopping bag on your carry-on. Empty your leg bag into it. No one will notice or care. Tie it up in the plastic bag and have your friend throw it out or just leave it on the floor tied up.

Always check in at curbside. Remove everything from your wheelchair (pouches, bags) and body (jackets). Every U.S. airport has a line for wheelchairs to make your wait shorter at security. It varies by airport how much time you’ll save, but find that line.

Once you clear security, head to your gate to arrive about one hour