Traveling with a mobility scooter

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Joined
Jan 29, 2014
Messages
99
Location
Fort Worth
I have travelled many times on Amtrak in the past, lately mostly in bedrooms. In the last couple of years, I have developed worsening lung problems (partially collapsed lungs) which cause me to get badly out of breath when walking more that about a hundred feet, so I have started using a mobility scooter whenever I will have to walk a long distance. I am aware that I can take my scooter with me when I book the accessible bedroom. I have even booked the accessible bedroom for a couple of trips later this year, one in August and one in October. But there is a problem. Since there is only one accessible bedroom on the Texas Eagle out of Fort Worth, I was unable to get reservations for the travel days I originally wanted for either trip.

I am still able to climb stairs, so getting to an upper level room is still possible. So, my question is, can I take my scooter along if I book a regular bedroom or even a roomette. According to the manufacturer, my scooter weighs 98 pounds. Would I have to crate it in order to check it? Doing so would make it very difficult to transport to the hotel at my destination unless I uncrated it right in the station, which would be difficult for me to do physically anyway.

I have read that the airlines will allow me to ride my scooter right up to the ticket counter, where they will take it and put me in a wheelchair for the trip through the airport. At the destination airport they will deliver it to me ready for use at the baggage claim. Will Amtrak do that much for me?
 

joelkfla

Conductor
Joined
Oct 16, 2018
Messages
1,912
Location
12 miles from Walt Disney World
I have travelled many times on Amtrak in the past, lately mostly in bedrooms. In the last couple of years, I have developed worsening lung problems (partially collapsed lungs) which cause me to get badly out of breath when walking more that about a hundred feet, so I have started using a mobility scooter whenever I will have to walk a long distance. I am aware that I can take my scooter with me when I book the accessible bedroom. I have even booked the accessible bedroom for a couple of trips later this year, one in August and one in October. But there is a problem. Since there is only one accessible bedroom on the Texas Eagle out of Fort Worth, I was unable to get reservations for the travel days I originally wanted for either trip.

I am still able to climb stairs, so getting to an upper level room is still possible. So, my question is, can I take my scooter along if I book a regular bedroom or even a roomette. According to the manufacturer, my scooter weighs 98 pounds. Would I have to crate it in order to check it? Doing so would make it very difficult to transport to the hotel at my destination unless I uncrated it right in the station, which would be difficult for me to do physically anyway.

I have read that the airlines will allow me to ride my scooter right up to the ticket counter, where they will take it and put me in a wheelchair for the trip through the airport. At the destination airport they will deliver it to me ready for use at the baggage claim. Will Amtrak do that much for me?
I think you're out of luck.

I did a trip a few years ago on the Silvers between Orlando & Washington DC, ticketed in accessible bedrooms both ways. The return train was canceled due to an approaching winter storm. The accessible bedrooms were sold out on the following day's train, and I tried and tried to get the phone agent to put me in a bedroom and check my scooter, all to no avail. It's a travel size scooter, so I even offered to disassemble it and have it checked in pieces, or have the train staff help me get the pieces on board and squeeze them into the bedroom, but she wouldn't go for it. I ended up flying home.

On a previous trip between FL & CA, I had reserved a Roomette on the Zephyr intending to check the scooter or carry it aboard in pieces and stick them in the downstairs luggage rack. After a lot of discussion at the Chicago baggage check (where the agent was filling in and not too familiar with luggage procedures), they eventually called up a luggage handler, who took me down to the basement where they "palletized" it, placing it on a pallet and wrapping it in multiple layers of plastic. When we got to EMY, the unfortunate conductor (who was of a rather slight build) said, "That's great, but they forgot that we don't have pallet facilities at this station." The poor guy had to unwrap it in the baggage car and then lift it down to the ground on his own. I felt terrible for guy.
 
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