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Taking a place with a child with a motor disability

July 2012

This guide will help you prepare for an enjoyable trip and avoid any inconveniences while travelling.

Steps to take with the airline company

  • Ask the airline company for the forms to be completed prior to departing.
  • Learn about their safety rules and possible accommodations for your child's needs.

Technical aids

  • Determine the mobility aid that will be used for your travel plans. The mobility aid must be adjusted and in good working order.
  • A written justification by your rehabilitation professionnal or doctor may be required for a posture unit, if your child requires one on board the aircraft.

Health condition

  • You will need to carry with you information about your child's health condition (ex.: summary of current state of health, attestation of the diagnosis, health book, or other).
  • Check with your child's doctor, if a respiratory aid will be needed. Taking one on board the aircraft requires a prescription from a pneumologist.
  • If your child uses a feeding tube, the airline company will request a written justification. Ask your nutritionist or doctor to provide you with one.

Items needed on board the aircraft

  • For tube feeding, be sure to bring with you the required quantity. You must respect the maximum amount of liquids that may be taken on board.
  • It is very important to carry with you the original prescription copies of any medications or liquids (milk, antibiotics, etc.) that you will be taking on board the aircraft.
  • Be sure to bring medication with you in case your child gets motion sickness. Consult your pharmacist or doctor, if needed.


  • Order the airline company's forms to be completed by your child's doctor.
  • Speak to your insurer about medical coverage in case of illness while you are on board.
  • If needed, consult a travel health clinic about vaccinations and any precautions to take regarding your travel destination.
  • Ask the nurse or coordinator to have your child's doctor prepare a summary of their current state of health. This should also include all the required written justifications. Allow 6 to 8 weeks for the completion of all the forms.
  • Make an appointment to visit with the Technical Aids Department.
  • Find out the weight of your child's wheelchair or technical aid.
  • Order the correct quantity of milk, if your child is fed through a tube. Find out if the country you will be visiting has the product or an equivalent for your child's feedings.
  • Ask your pharmacist for an updated list of your child's medications and have all your prescriptions filled for the entire duration of your trip and specify that you will be travelling by plane.
  • Make a list of all of the needed medical and hygiene items that you will carry on board the aircraft.


Take Charge of Your Travel: A Guide for Persons with Disabilities, Canadian Transportation Agency


Lucie Caron, Nurse
Sylvie D'Arcy, Physiotherapist, Clinical Coordinator

Taken from a brochure produced by the Neuromuscular Diseases Program

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Updated on 3/20/2015
Created on 1/16/2015
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