Thursday, October 15, 2015

Ryanair Keeps Wheels Spinning

Before making our short trip by plane to Italy, one of my followers reminded me to "milk" the wheelchair part of my recent life. I laughed, but spending most of my waking hours confined to a wheelchair is no joking matter. I feel old, labile, and downright useless! And the labile and useless part seemed to influence our flights to and from Italy.

It all began with requesting wheelchair (our own) assistance before going to the airport in Weeze, Germany. When checking in very early, we were treated courteously with an offer to check in one of our carry-ons for free. Then a kind attendant helped us scurry through security. My wheelchair even got "dusted" for drugs, and I got the "pat down." Then we waited with the other passengers for boarding the plane, having read that we would be last and being told we would be first. Next we rolled up the Priority Lane and were "rolled" onto the passenger bus. When the bus driver asked if I could take a few steps, I said, "No." [If I plan to get over this foot break, I have to keep insisting that I can't take any steps. So I have been consistent with this.]

The driver rolled out the ramp and zoofed me up onto the bus with the other passengers. When we got to the plane, he zoofed me off. Then the real fun began! When there was a lull in the passengers ascending the stairs to the plane, I was whisked out of my wheelchair and secured with a seatbelt in a narrow airplane aisle wheelchair. Slowly, but surely. I ascended the stairway (I was facing away from the plane) as the chair with special wheels pulled me up into the plane. Inside the aircraft I was asked if I could take a few steps. "No," was my answer,  and I was rolled to my seat. In the meantime, my own wheelchair was quickly folded and stashed into the belly of the plane.

When we arrived in Bergamo about 1 1/2 hours later, I expected a similar experience. But this time I traveled in the airplane wheelchair to a movable lift and met up with my own wheelchair. After a brief ride across the tarmac in the lift, we were brought down to ground level and then I was wheeled through baggage claims and out to the rental car bus .

Super service, Ryanair!

The return flight yesterday was just as well orchestrated as the flight last week. This time instead of a couple of bus ramps, a strong man said, "Don't worry, madam," and managed my wheelchair up and down bus entrances. And I had the same buckled up ride on the staircase, but this time going down and in the freezing rain.

Ryanair, you get a 10+++ in ratings for handling wheelchairs and passengers!!!

How you can do all that for a flight ticket that costs only 9.99 (10) Euros per person is a puzzle to me? 

But I am game! 

I will fly Ryanair again, but hopefully without a wheelchair!


NanaDiana said...

Wow- That is SOME service and SOME price. Good for you for saying NO-when the tendency (at this age) is to say---Of course I to show them we are not helpless. I have done it myself-that's how I xo Diana

Joanne Noragon said...

My experienes involving wheelchairs and airplanes have not been good at all. Kudos to Ryanair!

Janneke said...

Dat is nog eens goede reclame voor Ryanair! Wat een service en dat allemaal met zo'n super goedkope ticket.