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Travelling with disabilities - Stockholm

(9 Posts)
tribpot Fri 10-Nov-06 10:55:02

I've decided to accept that my dh is to all intents and purposes disabled (has an undiagnosed chronic pain condition + sleep apnoea + god knows what) so can't walk any distance and has to travel with a laptop-sized breathing machine for sleep.

Now, I know that people with disabilities manage to go on holiday, the question is, how. We've been invited to a reunion weekend in Stockholm at the start of December, I would love to go but I can't see how it will be managed with dh AND monstrous, non-sleeping 16-month-old ds. At very least, we will need two hotel rooms as I think ds will find daddy's breathing machine far too interesting in the middle of the night to be bothered with sleep. That's doable, if expensive.

Our nearest airport is Leeds Bradford, and I'm not prepared to travel to Manchester as I would have to drive and it's an exhausting trip. So fine, we can go with KLM and change in Schiphol. Assume I can persuade KLM to give us transport through Schiphol as dh won't be able to walk.

God knows what we do at Arlanda - can't get a taxi as no car seat for ds, can't get the train as dh won't be able to manage.

And then this becomes our problem for the whole weekend - no-one else will be travelling with someone with disabilities plus a baby (poss another baby or two will be in evidence). Just moving anywhere will be difficult, plus we can't both go out for dinner as ds' sleep too uncertain to be left to a babysitter. Finding food for dh (food intolerances) difficult in Sweden ...

... hmm yes. Why AM I thinking about going?

Questions:
- has anyone got something bigger than the current handbaggage sizes out of a UK airport? The breathing machine will be too big but cannot be put in the hold as it belongs to the NHS and cost £1500.
- what's up with formula feeds at the mo, can you take bottles of water + powder to mix up, or do you have to buy water in the airport, or can't you even do that?
- has anyone had any success in booking taxis with a car seat in?
- any other tips for travelling with someone with disabilities?

tribpot Fri 10-Nov-06 14:48:24

Bump if anyone has info

tribpot Sun 12-Nov-06 17:18:25

Bump for the weekend.

BIGlilBUBU Sun 12-Nov-06 17:24:42

Perhaps you could hire a car, they have carseats if you request one. Im sure if you phone the air line in advance and tell them you must take the breathing machine on board with you.
Bring ds out for meals with you. My mums from sweden so we go over there alot, what food cant he have?

tribpot Sun 12-Nov-06 17:30:20

Thanks - hadn't thought about hiring a car, although Arlanda isn't really far enough from Stockholm to warrant it - would be cheaper to send luggage + dh by taxi whilst ds and I get the train.

It's dh with the food intolerances, wheat and shellfish. We both lived in Sweden for some years though (7 in his case) so he knows what he can and can't eat, I think I am probably worrying unduly about this as we used to live in a very small town with like 3 restaurants, so choice was limited. Stockholm has more than 3 restaurants

I think I'll try and get written confirmation from KLM that the breathing machine is okay to be taken as handluggage; the ground staff at Leeds Brad are ServisAir and thus (a) rubbish and (b) not 'proper' airline staff. (With all due respect to anyone who works for ServisAir, I'd rather deal with a KLM person on something like this).

Ds is 17 months and would be grotesquely grumpy if made to go out for dinner in the evening, plus I doubt my friends would choose somewhere child-friendly in any case.

BIGlilBUBU Sun 12-Nov-06 17:35:18

Wheat intoerance must be a tough one for you. Im sure it will work out ok. Not sure what you should do about ds and eating out. Nothing you can do really if babysitter and taking him with you isnt an option. The only other thing i could think of would be..if your staying in a hotel to eat there one evening in there resturant with a baby moniter. Not ideal I know but an idea.

tribpot Sun 12-Nov-06 18:42:36

Yes - it's a lot easier to manage here than it was when we lived in Sweden.

We've been thinking about the car hire idea though and think it's a good one - will also mean we can get around Stockholm without having to manage the whole taxi/public transport problem as well. Dh used to live there and so is familiar with the roads, plus we have TomTom.

MrsMillsletoe Fri 01-Dec-06 14:22:01

Tribpot, I live halfway between Arlanda and the city centre. I would love to help if you need any.

If you are not hiring a car, I could certainly take you to your hotel and pick you up again. I have even been know to babysit!

Just ask! You may remember you gave me loads of uselful information when we were getting ready to come out here a year ago.

MrsMillsletoe Tue 05-Dec-06 20:56:11

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