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LokiPoki

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  1. Aldi is also pretty good for gluten free stuff. And yes, you should be fine. Definitely declare, but generally packaged, processed foods are no issue.
  2. You’d have to pay me to fly Jetstar with a mobility device - too many friends who’ve had shocking experiences. I’ve had largely good experiences with Virgin and Qantas - only bad experience I’ve had was a miscommunication flying Virgin that resulting in my wheelchair going MIA for some time at the beginning of a trip. I’m flying AirNZ next month (MEL-AKL-MEL) as they had the best prices for flights when I needed to travel - haven’t flown with them before, but several friends with health and/or mobility issues speak very highly of them.
  3. Yes, that’s my memory of the place too. I’ve sent a message to the people Aus Traveller suggested and waiting to see if they respond. Someone on another forum said there IS a church (St Bede’s) but I can’t find much info on it. At least looks like the one Gut mentioned has weekday mass - which may be an option for my friend.
  4. Thanks Gut - does indeed appear to be Catholic - but unfortunately looks to be in Suva. I’m sure it won’t be the end of the world if there isn’t one, but I know (insofar as an atheist can anyway) how important her faith is to her, so will continue searching.
  5. Hoping someone can help - have also asked this in the Pacific Islands board but figured it was worth asking here as a lot of Aussies/Kiwis travel to Fiji. I’m doing a Fiji cruise with friends later this year. We will be in Savusavu on a Sunday and one friend would like to be able to attend Mass if at all possible. Google suggests there is a Catholic Church in Savusavu, but I can’t find anything else. Can anyone confirm if this is correct - and details like where the church is, what times services are held, are non-locals welcome to attend, etc? Thanks Laura
  6. Hoping someone can help - will also ask in the Australian/NZ board as I’m guessing a lot of people there travel to Fiji. I’m doing a Fiji cruise with friends later this year. We will be in Savusavu on a Sunday and one friend would like to be able to attend Mass if at all possible. Google suggests there is a Catholic Church in Savusavu, but I can’t find anything else. Can anyone confirm if this is correct - and details like where the church is, what times services are held, are non-locals welcome to attend, etc? Thanks Laura
  7. I shouldn’t think so. If in doubt, just carry some sort of documentation (from the manufacturer if you bought it yourself, or from your doctor or physio if it was prescribed) to explain what it is and why you have it, just on the off chance that you encounter someone who isn’t familiar with them. I don’t use TENS, but I have a spinal cord stimulator (and have to carry all the associated external charging and programming bits and pieces) and have never had anyone ask a question. Nor do I tend even to mention it... the only time I have done so is one occasion when I “went flat” and had to charge on a plane - and just let a cabin crew member know what I was doing, lest any fellow passengers get nervous about me attaching wires and a battery pack to myself mid flight.
  8. Shower stool can be provided upon request - though the ones I’ve had provided are very basic - small, no arms or back (and honestly, anything bigger probably wouldn’t fit into the shower cubicle). I have had a raised seat on one cruise, but it was a total and utter nuisance - took up already limited space, and also prevented the toilet lid ‘sealing’ - so the thing would never flush properly. Just get in touch with special needs/access dept for whoever you’re cruising with.
  9. Yes, I’ve had much the same experience - in my case with a muesli bar that I’d forgotten about and had travelled to/from the UK with me. Was put through the ringer and the muesli bar confiscated - but the really frightening part was that customs were not the least bit bothered by my declaration that I’d been on farmland and in contact with livestock while overseas. This was mid-2001, at the time of the FMD outbreak in the UK - I’d not been anywhere near any affected areas, but they had no way of knowing that based on my declaration. I figure that if in doubt, declare.
  10. This has happened to me twice with my wheelchair. On both occasions it eventually turned up, but it’s made for a very stressful few hours - especially given both times have been at the start of a holiday, in an overseas country (at home would be bad enough, as I can’t get more than a few steps without it, but at least here I know where I can source one temporarily). I’ve never had damage to the extent that you’ve experienced, but I’ve also never yet had my chair make it through a flight without some minor damage. Having seen how it’s handled when unloaded, I’m not surprised at all that equipment gets damaged. May not be an option for some devices - certainly wouldn’t be for scooters or power chairs - or on narrow body aircraft, but I discovered when flying Australia - UK that the wide body aircraft have a smallish cupboard that is usually kept free for folding pushers or mobility equipment. Use seems to be at the discretion of the senior flight crew and comes on a first in, best dressed basis, but you can request that your gear be put in there and carried in the cabin rather than the hold. To the OP - I’d always opt for my wheelchair, as it’s much lighter and more maneuverable than a scooter, and because I use my chair all the time, it makes sense for me to have the “add on” bits to make life easier - so I have a power assist device to help with the very steep hills around where I live, I have a ‘freewheel’ to give me a smooth run over poor terrain, etc. But there are wheelchairs and wheelchairs; off the shelf chairs tend to be very uncomfortable, and also (as a user) much harder to propel; they also (not always, but usually) tend to be a lot heavier and less ‘tippy’ - which is good if you don’t want to accidentally spill someone out onto the road somewhere, but it does make for a lot more work if you find you’re having to jump up/down kerbs, or a step into a shop doorway, or whatever. If your wife doesn’t already have something to use at home, I’d strongly suggest doing a short term hire of different devices to see what she is most comfortable in.
  11. Agree, if opened, chuck them. Unopened, processed food, declare. That said, Australian customs do make some really bizarre calls - I was in the UK a number of years ago when they had an active foot and mouth outbreak. I was a long way from any FMD-affected areas, but I had been on farmland and around cattle. Declared on my incoming passenger card - which didn’t specify area, simply that I’d been in the UK, in rural areas and in contact with livestock. Customs couldn’t have cared less ... but put me through the ringer over a sealed muesli bar - made in Australia, but declared as food anyway - that was still in my bag on the return trip.
  12. Thanks Glenn - Not concerned about the Freewheel as I just unclip it and sling it on the back of the chair in crowded areas (I’d be taking people out all over too as although I’m very careful, people don’t seem to look below their own eye level) - mentioned it only because of the way it attaches to a folding chair - with an additional ‘T’ bar that clamps under the chair, vs clipping onto the footplate on a rigid chair. The T prevents the chair being folded - as does my backrest - and that has never proven an issue for tender crew...hence wondered whether a rigid frame chair would pose problems. Hopefully that makes sense. It’s been a long week!
  13. Thanks Bloodgem, Haven’t tried that particular email - only P&O Australia’s general email, as I couldn’t find a special needs specific email address for them - was them just coming back with the “it had to be collapsible” response, but I might see if I can get anywhere with the address you posted. I’m sure the policies can’t differ too much across the group.
  14. Thanks Splinter, That’s what I figured (and particularly as it’s so much lighter and easier for someone else to move if need be, I couldn’t see a problem), but it’s now a few weeks since I made contact with P&O to check and they don’t seem inclined to answer. Yes, will be taking the Freewheel - also much easier to use on rigid chair as it just clips onto the footplate rather than having to mess about with an adaptor bar as I do now.
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