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Flying with RA

  • By tanyae

    I will be flying to see my daughter in a couple of days. I know walking through the airport will be difficult, but I am wondering how people with our “invisible” disease are able to get the cart to take them to their connecting flight when it doesn’t appear that there is anything wrong with them. I dread getting dirty looks from people who think I am just being lazy. I was diagnosed in March of this year and am still bothered by peoples ‘looks”.

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  • By Lauren Tucker Keymaster

    Hi Tanye,

    Glad you posted this in our forums. We understand that traveling with RA can be challenging and worrying about what others will think is a worry others have too, so you are not alone. It can be frustrating when people just don’t get it or understand what one that lives with RA goes through.

    While others in the community may write to you and offer some information or support, I thought I would share this article form Wren- https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/assistance-for-the-jet-set/ She writes about asking for help while grabbing a connecting flight.

    Additionally, I thought I would share this article about some helpful tips for traveling. https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/pack-ra-go/

    Please be safe in your travels and enjoy time with you daughter.
    If you’d like to share your story when you get back we’d love to hear how you make out.
    Feel free to share your story here: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/story/

    Best Wishes,
    Lauren (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

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  • By Ruthieq

    Hi Tanya, I always use the wheelchair service provided by the airlines. I ask for it while booking if I can and also remind the person at the counter when I check my bag, (I always check my bag). I ignore the looks because I have to do what’s good for me, and trucking through terminals is not good for me. I would be exhausted and not enjoy my trip and then what’s the point? You have to be your own advocate in this. It’s no one’s business but yours why you need one.TSA can be a crap shoot as to whether they still want to scan you with or without shoes etc. I don’t mind because I know I will get to my destination safe and at least with more energy than if I walked it myself. I even do this in our small airport in Michigan because of stairs or steep inclines to the gate. Good luck in all your travels, be well and energized when you get there.
    Ruth

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  • By tanyae

    Thank you for your responses! My daughter, bless her heart, had made arrangements for a wheelchair and I wasn’t aware of it. So, I did use it and the carts and my trip was as pleasant as could be! Thank you for removing the guilt.

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    • By Lauren Tucker Keymaster

      tanyae,
      That is so great to hear that your daughter did that for you. I hope that made you feel good!
      Thanks for checking back in with us. We are glad to have you here.
      Best,
      Lauren (RheumatoidArthritis.net)

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