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Southwest/flying with someone in wheelchair?

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by zoey11, Jul 12, 2014.

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  1. zoey11

    zoey11 Low-Roller

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    Hi! Am flying with a friend who has to use a wheelchair and her husband in Oct. I just wondered if you are with someone in a wheelchair, can you board with them or should I go ahead and get earlybird check in? Thanks for any replies!
     
  2. LVHooked

    LVHooked High-Roller

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    I think one person can board with the person in the wheelchair.

    God must fly Southwest, because it's amazing the folks that need a wheelchair getting on, but can sprint off.
     
  3. zlanga

    zlanga Low-Roller

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    If the gate agents are doing their job properly, they will tell you to board with your boarding #.

    Early bird may or may not be necessary if they are boarding early they can more than likely save the 3rd seat in their row and you would only need to worry about checking in T-24, saving the $12.50.
    On the way home, lots of folks seem to agree that early bird is the way to go in order to be hassle-free with checking in while in Vegas. I agree with those folks.
     
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  4. ND80

    ND80 Low-Roller

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    It's beyond ridiculous. One of the reasons I do not like flying Southwest. You see a lot of 'disabled' passengers in wheelchairs throughout the airport but because of the seating policy of SW there seem to be a lot more of them at their gates. Last year when I was flying back from LAS to BWI on Southwest there were so many wheelchairs at that gate it was comical. Even though I/we had a low A boarding pass we still ended up sitting fairly far back because of all the pre boarders. This year my two trips are going to be on United.
     
  5. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    Ohhhhh here we go.... Yes, I'm pretty sure 1 additional person can board, so you should be able to accompany your friend. Don't be bashful about calling 1-800-IFLYSWA and ask. They're very friendly and helpful representatives.
     
  6. CalifLovesVegas

    CalifLovesVegas Low-Roller

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    Agree about the wheelchair brigade.........

    Pretty much what said above, but since it sounds like 3 of you are flying together?
    Usually only One can board with wheelchair occupant. But I've seen more.........
    Odd man out can get early bird. But you could probably save your $12.50.
    If the 2 are already on the plane, save you a seat? The 3 of you can sit together anyway.
    That's probably what I would do.
     
  7. zoey11

    zoey11 Low-Roller

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    Thanks for your answers. I wouldn't want to board early with them if her husband goes on with her and they only allow one person, I will just get the early bird to hopefully get a seat with them.
    I can't believe people actually get a wheelchair to board a plane first and then sprint off, that is just not right! I never thought of anyone doing that, but in this world today, gees!
    I don't really care where I sit on the plane, it would be nice to sit with my friends but if I cant, I'll go by the rules and it's not that big of deal.
     
  8. LVHooked

    LVHooked High-Roller

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    If your friends leave the middle seat empty, even without early boarding, you would most likely be able to sit with them.

    I think three trips back flying out of CLE, there were nine people in wheel chairs. They announced that if any could walk down the ramp, it would speed up boarding, as we were a little late boarding. Eight people walked down. And as far as I could see, only one used a wheelchair in Vegas.
     
  9. BethGarden

    BethGarden Tourist

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    I actually have two handicapped daughters (one in a wheelchair and one with other disabilities that cause her to have trouble walking). One person is allowed to board with each disabled person. We always board early but we also wait until last to get off. Southwest could easily cut down on the people taking advantage of the early boarding by requiring wheelchair bound people and their parties to get off last. I actually wish they would do this as it is very hard for us to get my daughter back several rows from the front and this has happened several times.
     
  10. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    On our flight last week we had the gate agent from hell who was on a power trip.
    Among the things she announced several times.
    Your paper boarding pass must be folded in half or you are not getting on the plane.
    Any child 2 years or older must be carrying their own boarding pass. Hell, give a 2 year old paper and they might eat it.
    Blue boarding card people - only one person can board with you. "grandpa & grandma can't both board with you"

    She went on with her rules several times and it became annoying. So much so that it prompted me to write to SWA, but so far no reply.

    I like SWA and 99% of the time the employees are very friendly. This one sucked!
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2014
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  11. Blonde_4_ever

    Blonde_4_ever "The Welfare Queen of Windsor"

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    I am kind of amazed that they don't require some kind of documented proof that you are disabled in order to board first, but I guess that might require them paying another employee to check on that.
    (Lord knows they don't want to do THAT!)
     
  12. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    When we took my grandmother, they let the three of us board together. I don't see the point of making a travel party split up because someone requires a wheelchair unless there are ten people trying to board with a blue board. I was a bit surprised that they didn't ask many questions about the wheelchair request but requiring documented proof of a disability is a tricky thing and I don't see many medical professionals having the time of day to validate them.
     
  13. Ladybb9201

    Ladybb9201 Tourist

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    flying while disabled

    I am disabled and use an electric scooter. I resent some comments made by some who don't like flying southwest because of disabled individuals boarding first. Like it or not, some of us need a little extra time or assistance. Did it ever occur to these individuals that disabled people are most generally last to unboard?? Please think before you comment and count your blessings you can still walk!!! If I had a choice I would prefer walking!
     
  14. hillwood24

    hillwood24 High-Roller

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    I don't think any of the commenters above were talking about you or anyone in your similar situation. What they were talking about is the inordinate amount of people that are clearly gaming the system since they need assistance boarding, yet are magically able to run off the plane.

    There is some truth to those claims. I fly American and a good majority of my flights don't have a single person needing assistance to board. But on Southwest, every single flight has 5-10 people or more that require assistance.
     
  15. ND80

    ND80 Low-Roller

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    Exactly. No one is talking about legitimately disabled persons.
     
  16. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    Well the OP was so unleashing the vitriol about fakers in this particular thread isn't helpful.
     
  17. Ladybb9201

    Ladybb9201 Tourist

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    Thank you Hillword24. I am a legitamently disabled but if I were standing you would never know I am disabled. All I am saying is don't judge a book as it's cover. I agree there are people in this world who always try to beat the system.
     
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