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Southwest Airlines Mobility Scooter Policy

Southwest Airlines Mobility Scooter Policy

Southwest Airlines, known for its affordability and great customer service, has specific policies for passengers traveling with mobility scooters. To bring a mobility scooter on board, it must be battery-operated, weigh under 100 pounds, and have a maximum width of 33 inches. Passengers need to notify the airline at least 48 hours before their flight and arrive at the airport an hour before standard check-in.

Please note that Southwest Airlines doesn't provide mobility scooters but does allow passengers to bring manual and electric-powered wheelchairs. Understanding these policies is essential for a hassle-free travel experience for those requiring mobility assistance.

Mobility Scooter Policy

Southwest Airlines Mobility Scooter Policy Requirements: Under Southwest Airlines' mobility scooter policy, passengers can bring their mobility scooters on board, but specific requirements must be met. These include having a battery-powered scooter with a sealed and spill-proof battery, as well as size limitations of 30 inches in width and 48 inches in length. The scooter should also be stowable in the cargo compartment of the aircraft.

Passenger Responsibilities and Arrival Time: Passengers are responsible for ensuring their mobility scooter is in good working order and securely prepared for transport. Southwest Airlines recommends that passengers arrive at the airport at least 90 minutes before their scheduled departure to allow ample time for check-in and boarding.

Notification and Information Requirements: To comply with Southwest Airlines' mobility scooter policy, passengers must notify the airline at least 48 hours before their flight if they plan to bring a mobility scooter. This advance notice allows the airline to make necessary arrangements for safe scooter transport. Passengers are also required to provide the airline with the dimensions and weight of their scooter at the time of booking to ensure proper stowage in the aircraft's cargo compartment, contributing to a stress-free travel experience.

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Pre-Flight Procedures

Booking Process

When booking a flight with Southwest Airlines, passengers who require the use of a mobility scooter should inform the airline at the time of booking. This will allow the airline to make necessary arrangements to accommodate the passenger and their mobility device. Southwest Airlines allows passengers to bring their mobility scooters on board, subject to certain restrictions and guidelines.

Passengers are advised to review the airline's mobility scooter policy before booking their flight to ensure they understand the rules and regulations associated with bringing their device on board.

Check-In Guidelines

Passengers who require the use of a mobility scooter should arrive at the airport at least two hours before their scheduled departure time. They should proceed to the check-in counter to inform the airline staff of their device and to check in their mobility scooter.

Southwest Airlines requires that mobility scooters be checked in as baggage. Passengers are responsible for ensuring that their device is properly packaged and labeled with their name, address, and contact information. The airline recommends that passengers bring their own packaging materials to ensure that their device is properly protected during transport.

Once the mobility scooter has been checked in, passengers will be provided with a claim ticket which they should keep safe until they arrive at their destination. Upon arrival, passengers should proceed to the baggage claim area to collect their device.

In conclusion, Southwest Airlines has clear guidelines in place for passengers who require the use of a mobility scooter. By following the airline's policies and procedures, passengers can ensure that their device is transported safely and securely.

In-Flight Arrangements

Southwest Airlines allows passengers to bring mobility scooters on board their flights. However, due to limited space on the aircraft, passengers are required to stow their mobility scooters in the cargo hold.

Passengers should inform the airline in advance of their travel plans to ensure that the necessary arrangements can be made. Southwest Airlines recommends that passengers arrive at the airport early to allow sufficient time for check-in and boarding.

Once on board, passengers are required to transfer to a regular seat. Southwest Airlines provides an aisle chair to assist passengers with mobility issues in getting to and from their seats. The airline also allows passengers to bring their own mobility aids, such as canes or crutches, on board the aircraft.

In case of an emergency, Southwest Airlines has trained personnel who can assist passengers with mobility issues. The airline also provides information on emergency procedures for passengers with disabilities in the in-flight safety briefing.

Passengers with mobility scooters should ensure that their equipment is in compliance with the airline's policies and regulations. Southwest Airlines recommends that passengers review the TSA guidelines for traveling with mobility aids before their flight.

Post-Flight Procedures

After the flight, Southwest Airlines passengers who require mobility scooters should follow a few simple procedures to ensure a smooth and safe experience.

First, passengers should wait until all other passengers have deplaned before requesting assistance. Southwest Airlines personnel will then retrieve the mobility scooter and bring it to the gate area.

Once the mobility scooter is retrieved, passengers should inspect it for any damage that may have occurred during transport. If there is any damage, passengers should report it to Southwest Airlines personnel immediately.

Next, passengers should ensure that the mobility scooter is fully charged and operational before leaving the airport. If the battery needs to be charged, passengers can request assistance from Southwest Airlines personnel.

Finally, passengers should return the mobility scooter to the designated drop-off location before leaving the airport. Southwest Airlines personnel will then inspect the mobility scooter for any damage and ensure that it is stored properly.

By following these post-flight procedures, passengers can ensure a safe and hassle-free experience when traveling with Southwest Airlines and their mobility scooter.
chairs at an airport with bag on seat and luggage on ground

Special Cases and Exceptions

Southwest Airlines understands that there may be special cases and exceptions when it comes to mobility scooter policy. Therefore, they have provided some exceptions to their policy to accommodate their passengers.

Exceptions

  • Battery-powered mobility devices: Southwest Airlines allows battery-powered mobility devices with non-spillable batteries that meet the requirements of 49 CFR 173.159a. The batteries must be securely attached to the device, and the terminals must be protected from short circuits.

  • Oxygen cylinders: Passengers with mobility devices that require oxygen cylinders are allowed to travel on Southwest Airlines. However, the oxygen cylinder must meet the requirements of 49 CFR 173.159a.

  • Service animals: Passengers with disabilities who require service animals to travel on Southwest Airlines are allowed to do so. However, the animal must meet the requirements of Southwest Airlines' service animal policy.

Special Cases

  • International travel: Passengers traveling internationally with mobility devices must comply with the regulations of the country they are traveling to. Southwest Airlines recommends that passengers check with the embassy or consulate of the country they are traveling to for specific requirements.

  • Connecting flights: Passengers with mobility devices who are traveling on connecting flights with other airlines must comply with the policies of each airline they are traveling with. Southwest Airlines recommends that passengers check with each airline for specific requirements.

  • Unaccompanied minors: Southwest Airlines allows unaccompanied minors with mobility devices to travel on their flights. However, the parents or guardians of the minors must contact Southwest Airlines prior to the flight to make arrangements for their travel.

women in a scooter loading into a van

Frequently Asked Questions

Southwest Airlines Mobility Scooter Policy is designed to ensure that passengers with mobility impairments can travel comfortably and safely. Here are some frequently asked questions about Southwest Airlines Mobility Scooter Policy.

Can I bring my mobility scooter on Southwest Airlines?

Yes, you can bring your mobility scooter on Southwest Airlines. However, there are some restrictions that you need to be aware of. The mobility scooter must meet the size and weight restrictions of Southwest Airlines. The maximum weight limit for mobility scooters is 100 pounds, and the maximum size limit is 52 inches in length, 32 inches in width, and 34 inches in height.

Do I need to notify Southwest Airlines if I am bringing a mobility scooter?

Yes, you need to notify Southwest Airlines at least 48 hours before your flight if you are bringing a mobility scooter. You can do this by calling Southwest Airlines Customer Service or by visiting the Southwest Airlines website.

Do I need to check in my mobility scooter?

Yes, you need to check in your mobility scooter at the ticket counter or the gate. The mobility scooter will be stored in the cargo hold of the aircraft. You should remove any detachable parts, such as the battery, and carry them on board with you.

Can I use my mobility scooter at the airport?

Yes, you can use your mobility scooter at the airport. Southwest Airlines provides wheelchair assistance for passengers with mobility impairments. You can request wheelchair assistance when you make your reservation or at the airport.

What if my mobility scooter is damaged during transport?

If your mobility scooter is damaged during transport, you should report it to Southwest Airlines as soon as possible. Southwest Airlines will investigate the damage and provide compensation if necessary.

Can I bring my service animal on Southwest Airlines?

Yes, you can bring your service animal on Southwest Airlines. Service animals are allowed to travel with their owners in the cabin of the aircraft. You should notify Southwest Airlines at least 48 hours before your flight if you are bringing a service animal.

Can I bring my oxygen concentrator on Southwest Airlines?

Yes, you can bring your oxygen concentrator on Southwest Airlines. However, you need to notify Southwest Airlines at least 48 hours before your flight if you are bringing an oxygen concentrator. You should also bring a doctor's statement that confirms your need for oxygen during the flight.

Conclusion

Southwest Airlines offers a comprehensive Mobility Scooter Policy, allowing passengers with mobility challenges to travel comfortably. Passengers can bring their mobility scooters onboard, following size and weight restrictions. Advance notification, early arrival, and adherence to post-flight procedures are recommended for a smooth experience. The airline accommodates special cases and exceptions, such as battery-powered devices, oxygen cylinders, service animals, and international or connecting flights. By adhering to these policies, passengers can ensure a hassle-free journey while enjoying the convenience of bringing their mobility scooters with them.

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