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Tryb4uFly – Preparing for Freddie’s first flight

Freddie, who is thirteen, has an undiagnosed condition and is unable to walk or support himself in any way.

His family really want to take him with them on a trip of a lifetime to New York, but were worried about how this would work, until they approached QEF’s Tryb4uFly service for help.

Freddie’s Mum and Dad, Penny and Paul, flew to New York eighteen years ago for their honeymoon but haven’t flown since. Penny told us: “We really want to go back with Freddie and our other two children, and have been saving to make this happen.”

“When we have been abroad as a family before we’ve packed up the car and driven to Europe, but we’ve not flown anywhere due to Freddie’s condition – we don’t know how to make it possible for him to fly and ensure that he’s safe and comfortable. It’s daunting.” Paul said “we’ve even been told that we should think about leaving Freddie in a hospice whilst the rest of us go to New York, but that’s not happening. We want to travel as a family.”

When Penny and Paul saw an advert for QEF’s Tryb4uFly assessment service in the disability magazine ‘Able’, they booked an assessment for Freddie with Chantal, one of our paediatric occupational therapists.

Using the MERU TravelChair
Chantal assessed Freddie’s posture and movement, and gave the family advice on the types of equipment they could use to make sure his seating was as secure and comfortable as possible.

She also talked through the questions they should ask the airline in advance, and the assistance they could expect at airports and from their airline. After trying a few different options and because of his smaller size, Freddie was very comfortable in a special TravelChair which Paul and Penny are now planning to hire from QEF for their trip. Created by the engineers at MERU the TravelChair provides support for disabled children in aircraft seats and is designed and made to the highest standards to meet strict aviation regulations.

Paul said: “We haven’t booked with a specific airline yet but now have the knowledge we need to ask the right questions, and the equipment to ensure that Freddie will be safe and comfortable. Hopefully this will make it less stressful for everyone.”

To learn more about QEF’s Tryb4uFly assessment service please click here.


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