All the answers to the most common doubts we may have when we decide to go on vacation by plane with our loved ones.

Traveling and changing places revitalizes the mind" said the philosopher Seneca. Doing so with an elder, however, requires planning and some considerations that should not be underestimated. If you are going to traveling by air with elderly people, we want to offer you all the information about existing accessibility services and tips for flying with complete peace of mind. Knowing what airports offer, and what to take into consideration before leaving can come in very handy to avoid risking bad surprises.  

Can the elderly travel by air? 

Of course, yes, regardless of age. It is important, however, that the elderly person is accompanied during the flight to ensure that he is supported throughout the duration of the trip. If this is not possible, care should be taken to accompany him to the airport for boarding and that he is met by a family member upon landing outside the airport. 

The important thing for a Elderly person who wants to travel by air is that he does not suffer from serious illnesses that could compromise your health while traveling. It is important to be able to consult your family doctor in advance for any specific questions or medical conditions.  

The airplane is undoubtedly one of the safest and most comfortable means of transportation, but it is true that when it comes to the elderly, certain aspects must be taken into consideration:   

  • It is best to prefer short trips of not more than 4 hours, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), to avoid cases of thrombosis during flight. This also avoids annoying situations such as muscle or joint pain due to, maintaining the same position. 
  • La atmospheric pressure Can cause serious respiratory and ear problems. 

What is the maximum age for air travel? 

There are no limits, of age. It is only recommended that the elderly person be in good health, follow the doctor's recommendations, and be accompanied as far as possible.  

When is air travel not recommended? 

Le most common pathologies that may cause inconvenience, during the flight are the following, in each case as recommendations and never as prohibitions:

  • Elderly people with severe respiratory infections, such as pneumonia or tuberculosis.
  • Cardiovascular disease, such as heart attack and chronic heart disease.
  • Mainly patients, with acute thromboembolic disease, because they may suffer thrombosis during the flight.
  • Not in all cases, but the elderly subjected, at chemotherapy or radiation treatments because they may have problems due to fatigue, tiredness or dizziness.
  • People with Recurrent or permanent ear diseases, such as sinusitis otitis dizziness or tinnitus, as the high pressure could further harm and disturb the passenger.   

What does an elderly person need to travel? 

If possible, the elderly should be accompanied for the duration of the flight. Otherwise, they should have someone to accompany them and pick them up at the airport.

It is necessary to carry the Necessary drugs, especially if it is a serious condition, to be used in an emergency.

You must bring documentation and the emergency telephone numbers In case the airline staff needs to contact a family member. 

Is it advisable to take out travel insurance? 

Yes. Taking out travel insurance is advisable to be provided with medical care. Many companies offer this type of insurance for people over the age of 65.
Travel insurance protects the traveler against any inconvenience and is the certainty of embarking on a vacation protected from any risk, such as illness or injury. 

Tips for seniors who decide to travel by air

We recommend. Do not travel with a backpack or any other accessory under your feet, so that you can stretch your legs as far as possible and have more space.

It should not be forgotten that airlines require measurements for the aids we want to carry on the plane, corresponding to height, width and weight. In this regard, Mia Medical Italy provides boards and certificates of compliance For all the aids it offers.

Despite the price of drinks at airports, don't forget to buy water directly at the airport or on the plane. It is important to stay well hydrated, during the flight.

It is important to have the family doctor's preventive recommendation, which will analyze whether there are specific diseases that may affect air travel of the elderly.

It is also recommended to travel with 3 layers of clothing (underwear, sweater or blouse and coat) to avoid temperature changes during the flight. Sometimes, both in airports and on the plane, it is very hot and on many other occasions very cold.

Be sure to store the medications needed for the elderly person In carry-on luggage and not in checked luggage.

Avoid small airports if you are traveling with an older adult, because your loved one may have to use stairs to get on or off the plane. The larger airports, the better equipped they are to offer assistance. For example, most have hotels inside or very close by in case of flight cancellation.

A person in the family should Take charge of purchasing airline tickets and should inquire whether, for example, their loved one might need a Wheelchair to reach the gate or door of the plane. Be sure to check the respective regulations, and whether airlines make discounts available for seniors. For example, some require a preferential boarding pass upon arrival at the airport, others make a boarding call for those who need assistance, and still others must be contaRed by phone before the date of travel.

It is good to modify the itineraries so that they include a sufficient rest time between activities and do not exceed energy reserves. Naps, frequent, bathroom stops, regular breaks and a pace suited to the abilities of older travelers will make the trip more enjoyable for everyone. - If you are traveling with an electric aid, be sure to carry the battery data sheet. Remember that not all batteries can be loaded in the cargo hold and therefore it is necessary to check that this is suitable, otherwise, it will have to be disassembled and brought with you on board. Consider purchasing or renting a lightweight and portable wheelchair. For airlines, wheelchairs are not considered baggage and can be taken with you to the door of the plane and picked up at disembarkation, ready to be used.


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Traveling is one of the best things to do at any age, and getting older doesn't mean you have to stop doing it at all! True, seniors who decide to travel by air can take risks, and that is precisely why it is important to leave prepared. With proper planning and recognizing the limi, of your loved one, we can take the right precautions and adapt so that the trip remains not only a doable activity, but also an enjoyable event for all of us.

Happy vacations!