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Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

posts: 12
reviews: 16
Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

The last time we went abroad we went as a normal family mum dad and 2 teenage kids. We were financially and physically fit. Now things have changed big time and so unexpectedly. My husband had a massive stroke the first year barely surviving ,then an aortic dissection the following year again seriously lucky to survive albeit with an aortic graft and artificial heart valve. Then last year nearly died again with massive infection and spent the summer in the heart institute. So now the kids are at Uni its just hubby and I with limited finances and him with little mobility. He can walk a few yards very very slowly with a stick. He gets around the house by grabbing chairs cupboards etc. He has a collapsible wheelchair he resists going in as much as possible which I push. He tries to live the same life he did, he has had some nasty falls .

We now want a foreign holiday together. I am apprehensive to say the least! Finances are limited, insurance limits us to Europe so we were thinking Canaries as it would be warm in October when we can go. I would like an all inclusive hotel right on the beach so everything will be there. I am also worried how I will get him into the airport he has trouble just getting in and out of our car although he can actually do it. I have been on at him to get a mobility scooter but he wont as doesn't want to be disabled although he so obviously is.

So basically I am travelling for the first time with a husband who can't walk very far gets very breathless and tired and is on dozens of meds including wafarin. I don't want to deny him or me a much needed holiday but trying to find somewhere suitable on a budget I have had no luck so far. Suggestions anyone?

18 replies to this topic
Mount Dora, Florida
Destination Expert
for Istanbul
posts: 12,658
reviews: 206
11. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

This little elevator was about the size of a telephone booth, if you are not too young to remember what phone booths were. It did not have an inside door. The residents of the building were happy with it because it had only recently been installed. Most of them, however, had to make two trips to get their purchases up to their apartments. It worked very well, It was just obnoxious taking the scooters apart, but I would do that every day if I could avoid the treacherous winding staircase with no hand rails in my hotel in Istanbul.

In Florence I requested a room without stairs. It was possible to reach our room without walking up a flight of stairs, but there were four stairs in one location, and five in another, and six at the end of the hall. We had to leave our scooters in the lobby. Because we did not have to climb an actual flight of stairs, the hotel people felt they had satisfied my request. Just lots of little problems like that in Italy, but, as I said, much easier than some other places.

Most people do not think of Istanbul as a European city, and, in fact, a significant part of the city is technically in Asia.

London, England
posts: 4,541
reviews: 60
12. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

Busy retired

I can sympathise with all those annoying things. Fortunately, I can do stairs and don't have to use a wheelchair or scooter all the time. However, I sometimes take a scooter away with us. My local Council lends them out FOC and collects and delivers.

We were last in Rome last summer to attend a wedding and it was the first time I had taken a wheelchair. The tram was fine, but found getting on/off buses not too bad as the local people tend to be helpful, but wouldn't really recommend it.

Eastleigh, United...
Destination Expert
for Eastleigh, Winchester
posts: 4,195
reviews: 93
13. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.


Pompeii has very poor accessibility for disabled visitors, we were advised that we would only be able to view the Amphitheatre area which can be entered from the road at the top of the site.

We were in fact able to make our way around most of the site but only because my wife has sufficient mobility to get out of the chair and walk for short distances when we came to difficult areas. One of the problem area is that the Roman streets have huge 18" curbs with stepping stones to cross the street at junctions. The stones are spaced to allow wagon wheels through but not a modern wheelchair!

We found Herculaneum (Ercolano) to be more accessible since wooden bridges had been built to cross most of the roads.

Our visit was several years ago now so things may have changed and it would be best to post on the Naples and Pompeii forums for more up to date information.

posts: 51
14. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.


I will be travelling to Istanbul by cruise ship in October with my husband. Could you give me some information about wheelchair accessibility of the main sites., please.

Nowy Sacz, Poland
Destination Expert
for Poland
posts: 4,024
reviews: 42
15. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

Go on the Istanbul forum. Busy Retired is a DE there and wil see your message sooner

posts: 1
reviews: 5
16. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

My husband suffered a stroke 8 years ago and uses an electric wheelchair for the last 3 years we have visited the canaries and find Tenerife marvellous in terms of accessibility airports totally look after you contact airports directly and they will tell you what they can do for you. We have travelled each year with Thomson and I ring and explain what we need . You have to check carefully with the hotel as to what their access is and it isn't always great - ramps too steep, baths instead of showers etc. but now I am becoming an old hand at it I go and ask for assistance if necessary. I find all staff do everything they can to help . Good luck. It wont be perfect but difficulties can be overcome and just ask for help when you need it. Next year we are going to Malaysia to visit one of our sons. It won't be plain sailing . None of these holidays are but we will give it a try. We get insurance through All Clear.

17. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

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Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for TripAdvisor Support
posts: 12,764
reviews: 28
18. Re: Advice please first time abroad with disabled husband.

Club M, please note that self promotion is specifically forbiden by the TA community guidelines

Every time you post, there is a link to them, you may want to give them a read before posting again. :). Thanks.

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