Packing All the Things

Posted by Elizabeth Forst in Life After Paralysis on May 25, 2022 # Travel

Eb at the airportTraveling as a quadriplegic is like traveling with the circus. You must bring everything to be fully prepared for any unforeseen circumstance. This includes not only traditional luggage full of clothing and toiletries but in addition all medical supplies, medications, accessible devices, slings, ramps, travel lifts, wound care supplies, additional wheelchair equipment, and service dog basics if traveling with an animal.

Over the last many years, I have traveled to many destinations by air and road. Through these experiences, I have realized that being fully prepared is paramount, and lists are incredibly important in keeping organized. And with that, I am sharing my “Packing list.” The recommendation is to print out and laminate a personalized version of this list and bring this on trips. Crossing off items with a dry erase marker will guarantee all items are being packed/repacked, and the list can be wiped clean between each journey. Packing ahead of time reduces travel day chaos, and working with a family member or caregiver to organize all supplies relieves stress and helps maintain organization while out and about away from home.

As the pandemic eases, traveling is finally returning to reality. The summer is upon us, and vacations with our family members and friends await. Being prepared and bringing “all the things" will make these experiences more fulfilling. Bon voyage!

Packing list for traveling

Bowel program

  • Suppositories
  • Baby wipes, examination gloves
  • Lubricant, hemorrhoid cream
  • Smooth move tea

Urinary care

  • Urine day bags
  • Urine night bags
  • Small vinegar & squeeze bottle for cleaning
  • Extra catheter & kit
  • Alcohol pads

Medical supplies

  • Blood pressure cuff
  • O2 sats measure/Thermometer
  • Medications – Tylenol PM, Advil, shoulder salve, pain meds, Tum's, Olly's melatonin, extra Senokot & Colace, Flexeril, Epi-pen, Benadryl, pillbox
  • CPAP
  • Night Boots
  • Hoyer Sling
  • First aid kit

Hair and face care

  • Shampoo/conditioner/dry shampoo
  • Dove body wash, Antibacterial soap for catheter
  • Face wash, face scrubber/sponges
  • Q-tips, cotton rounds
  • SPF face lotion, Body lotion, Sunscreen, Chapstick
  • Hairbrush, Hairbands
  • Straightener, hairdryer
  • Makeup, Makeup remover
  • Deodorant, Razors, Earplugs
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste/Dental floss
  • Perfume, jewelry

Adaptive equipment

  • A modular cell phone connector
  • Laptop–Quad joy, dictation microphone
  • Laptop charger
  • USB cords
  • Alexa dot
  • Ramps

Wheelchair equipment

  • Overnight charger
  • Extra seat cover
  • Wheelchair tags for flight, zip ties
  • Plastic wrap for wheelchair protection
  • Wheelchair tools

Transfer equipment

  • Slide board
  • Comfort carrier sling
  • Gel pad
  • Extra cushions for elbow protection, feet pads


  • Driver’s license, passport
  • Insurance card
  • Airline itinerary
  • Hotel itinerary with contacts
  • Van rental with contacts
  • Taxi information
  • Handicap placard


  • Travel Hoyer lift & charger
  • Caregiver fanny pack – snacks, gum, Chapstick
  • Travel wipes in a travel bag
  • Empty water bottle for flight -urine drainer
  • Extra trash bags
  • Chuck pads
  • Furniture risers

Service dog/Shadow

  • Extra dog food
  • Travel water bowl
  • Greenies, travel treats
  • Poop bags, toys
  • Anti-inflammatory meds
  • Paperwork, immunizations

This post is purely educational for our community readers. The Reeve Foundation does not endorse these products. These opinions are that of the blogger.

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.