Holiday travel tips

Posted by Reeve Staff in Daily Dose on December 12, 2017 # Travel

From our friends at the TSA Disability and Medical Condition Coalition:

Traveling any time of the year can be a hassle while living with paralysis, but flying during the holiday season can bring on an entirely different level of stress. Long lines and wait times are expected to increase as more people travel this time of year. With this in mind, the following tips may help you better prepare for screening:

  • Do your research: Learn more about what to expect for disability or medical condition screenings.
  • Leave yourself time: All travelers should arrive at least two hours early for domestic and three hours before international flights, to allow plenty of time to get through security screening.
  • Connect with a TSA Cares agent: Travelers with disabilities or medical conditions can provide a TSA Cares agent with a flight itinerary, and coordinate assistance available from a Passenger Support Specialist (PSS) and/or customer service manager at the airport. Their job is to assist travelers, address traveler-related screening concerns immediately and provide in-person on the spot assistance. This assistance may also be requested at the checkpoint, but pre-travel (72-hour notice) arrangements are recommended, and travelers should still arrive at least two hours early for domestic flights and three hours early for international flights. When requesting PSS assistance, keep in mind that each airport has different resources; therefore, the level of assistance received at the checkpoint can vary. To find out more, call TSA Cares toll free at (855) 787-2227 or email them at [email protected]
  • Download TSA’s Disability Notification Card: This allows a traveler to discreetly notify the TSA Officer of a disability, medical condition, or request for accommodation or assistance. This card does not exempt a traveler from screening.
  • Use TSA Pre✓® to your advantage: passengers do not need to remove shoes, laptops, liquids, belts, or light jackets during the screening process at participating airports. However, passengers are required to undergo screening at the checkpoint by technology or a pat-down. TSA Officers may swab your hands, mobility aid, equipment and other external medical devices to test for explosives using explosives trace detection technology. Traveling companions of TSA Pre✓® passengers also be registered to access the same area. Learn more about how to apply for TSA Pre✓®.

Safe travels this holiday season!

The National Paralysis Resource Center website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $8,700,000 with 100 percent funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.