How to Choose a Mobility Scooter For Travel

By : Brad Brubaker

When you use a mobility scooter at home and in your local community, you want it to be able to traverse your hallways and entryways as well as the paths and aisles in your local stores and venues. But when you’re choosing a scooter for traveling, you should really look at a variety of scooter features before making your choice. Some scooters are better designed for some areas than others, so choosing the right one can make your trip even better.

First, think about where you plan to travel. If you’re going to be outdoors a lot and need to use a scooter over a variety of terrains, then a heavy-duty, all-terrain model is your best option. These scooters are designed for rougher terrain and move better over uneven ground and a variety of surfaces. These scooters have larger wheels designed to absorb movement and impact so you’re more comfortable.

Extra heavy-duty anti-tip features, pneumatic tires and a powerful drive train are features on a heavy-duty scooter that make it more suitable for prolonged outdoor use. Lights, a front bumper and other protective features come standard on many of these super sturdy models. When choosing a heavy-duty model, look at important comfort features like a swivel seat and how much ground clearance there is beneath the scooter to be sure it’s right for the terrain you’ll be using it on. These scooters weigh more than standard or lightweight travel scooters, but most break down into several pieces which makes it easier to travel with them, if necessary.

Before you choose a heavy-duty scooter, make sure that it’s not more powerful than you really need. If you need the extra weight capacity these scooters can handle, because some will carry up to 500 pounds, then you may need this type of scooter. But if you can manage to use a lighter, smaller scooter, it will weigh less and be even more convenient for travel.

The ultra lightweight scooters that break down into lightweight pieces are perfect if you plan to make lots of transitions while on your trip. Going to from sidewalk to bus or taxi, or from hotel to taxi to another destination, means you’ll need to break the scooter down frequently. The lighter weight power chair you use in a situation like this, the more hassle-free you’ll feel getting from place to place.

Don’t forget to look at speed and maneuverability, too. Some scooters top out at just over 3 mph, while others break into the double digits. Will you be covering long distances? You’ll most likely want a scooter than can travel faster than 3 mph. And you’ll want a scooter with a battery that can go father on each charge than less powerful models.
If your vacation plans consist mostly of indoor activities, then speed might not be as important but maneuverability will be your top priority. The smaller the turning ratio of a scooter, the smaller an area you’ll be able to maneuver it in.

When choosing the scooter you’ll use on your trip, certainly consider your destination. But keep your comfort and preferences in mind as well so you can make a choice than enhances your vacation and makes it possible for you to enjoy yourself to the fullest.