Being the parents of two young children is hard work. Having one with additional needs is extra hard work. We decided we needed a holiday to recharge after some busy and stressful times.
To make life as easy as possible we went to the travel agent and asked them to sort us out with a week in the sun. First off there is no way to search the database for hotels that are accessible. Surely that’s a basic searchable? Already we can see scope for improvement or perhaps even a new business. Let me know if such a thing exists.
So we trawl through the possibilities until we find one that might work. The travel agent was great and phoned the hotel to make sure there were no issues with steps. However she discovered that although the hotel was accessible the rooms didn’t have accessible showers. That’s ok though Quinns is small enough that I can still manage (and even prefer) to bath him. For others, that wouldn’t be the case.
Ok that’s the hotel booked. Now flights. Special Assistance will be provided including help through the airport, priority through check-in and security and lift onto the plane. That all sounds great in theory but more on that later.
Now, how will Quinns sit on the plane? He can’t sit unaided and given half a chance will launch himself off anything (he finds it very funny when he does!) unless strapped in with a five point harness or butterfly strap. We thought he could use his GoTo seat (an awesome portable seat that allows him to sit strapped to any seat, swing, shopping trolley etc). It’s super portable and we’d planned to take it with us anyway. Airline said ‘No, it’s not approved.’
We need either a Crelling harness or a car seat. They can provide the harness for the over 3s. We’re going 3 weeks before Quinns’ third birthday!! We either need to buy one at a cost of around £100 or take our rather clunky car seat. Not ideal when you need lots of luggage to transport equipment and supplies.
It was a difficult decision but thankfully the car seat worked fine in terms of Quinns sitting on the plane and was even useful for the bus ride to the hotel. Fingers crossed the GoTo seat gets approval for airlines soon to avoid such problems for the under (and over) 3’s. And watch this space for next time we travel because they might actually let us use their Crelling harness!