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It depends. Wheelchairs/rollators can be stored in the cabin IF the plane has a closet (not all planes have closets) AND you are the first person who asks to use it (the most wheelchair using passengers on a plane I have been on was 5 from JFK New York to London Heathrow) AND it is not already filled with crew luggage. You can choose to gate check your chair or turn it in at check-in and take the airport's chair to your gate.
All the times I've traveled with my walker/rollator it's never been allowed to be placed in the cabin closet. It's always been tagged for gate check-in. I use it to walk to the plane door. Fold it and leave on the jet way. It than gets hand carried down to the hull of the plane for loading. Upon arrival it than gets unloaded and placed back on the jetway waiting for me by the door of plane. I never check it through as luggage to be picked up on the luggage belt as it would most likely get damaged.
I recently took my elderly mother and her rollator on a trip and we ended up checking her rollator as baggage, but not before I took a couple of digital pictures just before handing it over as evidence of it's prior condition. Other than one very minor scuff mark, it was fine.
We opted to use the wheelchair assistance at the airport as the distances can be far and the assistants can bypass many of the lineups making going through security and immigration a lot less arduous and tiring.
Our experience as been that as a rule they go into a cargo hold but are waiting for you at the gate on arrival unless you check them....regardless they do fly free of charge. We are flying to London in September and I notice that BA does say they will take them into the cabin if space permits.
I'm hoping someone in the UK (London or Dover area) can help me find some information on renting a scooter for an up-coming two-week cruise on Princess. We have two other cruises booked, both beginning in the US, and we were able to arrange to have a scooter delivered to our H/C cabin to rent for the week. TA had no luck locating such a service for our cruise leaving from Dover in mid-July. Hoping some fellow cruisers can help us. Thanks!