Welcome to Traveling With A Chair

Uncategorized Dec 16, 2019

Welcome to Traveling with a Chair

This blog will feature a variety of travel information.  My wife Cheryl, who travels with her wheelchair, and I are seasoned travelers with a love of cruising.  This blog will provide information for new cruisers, and those traveling with wheelchairs, as well as descriptions of our adventures.  I started this project because we were planning a cruise and there was a lack of information about accessibility on several ports as well as the on the ship.
I hope that you will find this information both interesting and helpful.  In addition to the blog, I will also be posting videos to my YouTube Channel, Traveling with a Chair.  You can expect frequent updates to start with as we just returned from a ten-day cruise, and are in the middle of planning a seven-day Alaska cruise.
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Overview of the Norwegian Breakaway

Uncategorized Dec 15, 2019

Overview of the Breakaway

The Breakaway is one of the larger ships in the NCL fleet.  She is capable of holding 4,800 passengers and about 1,700 staff.  On our cruise, she had about 4,000 passengers.  The ship has 16 main decks, and two above that are partial decks used for specific activities such as sunbathing and the sports deck.
This ship has excellent handicap access.  There are public bathrooms throughout the public areas that have power activated doors.  Additionally, the staff was always accommodating with my wife.  In the restaurants, they would always find a place to put her chair that was close but out of the way.  One night, in the Manhattan room, we ate later and at the very aft end.  Leaving the area was a challenge as there were chairs in the way.  The waiter pushed my wife while I moved chairs.
The ship has two areas with elevators, a total of 16 elevators, in aft elevator...
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Pre- Cruise Prep and Things to Remember

Uncategorized Dec 15, 2019


Things not to forget (some that we forgot)

Even before it is time to pack, you want to start making your packing list.  This cruise was on the Breakaway.  NCL is known for Freestyle Cruising, and what this means is that there are not any formal nights.  You can be as dressy or as casual as you want, with some minor exceptions.  You cannot go to any of the restaurants with wet bathing suits, and if you are in a swimsuit, you should wear a cover-up in the buffet even.  You have to wear shoes and shirts in restaurants.
They recommend long pants in the specialty restaurants and the Manhattan Room, we saw them enforcing the no shorts on men at the entrance to the Manhattan room.  For this cruise, I took some nice polo shirts, one pair of slacks, and shorts.  My wife took a nice skirt and blouse combination, pants, shorts, and tops.  Whatever you are going to wear, I would make a list before packing day...
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Day 1 -Morning in Seward, Boarding the Ship, and Sailing past Bear Glacier.

Uncategorized Nov 21, 2019

Breakfast at Harbor 360 Hotel

The photo above is me sitting in the breakfast area with the Jewel behind me, a better picture is below this post.  My wife and granddaughter were sleeping in trying to recover from the long day before.  

The free breakfast was typical of many free continental breakfasts at hotels.  The things they had were all good, you could get hot pancakes, but I settled for a light start and lots of coffee.  We chose this hotel for its proximity to the harbor and the ship.  

After breakfast, I went and explored a little and then joined my wife and granddaughter for a walk around the port area.  We checked out the close gift shops and a hardware store.  Then it was time to go back to the hotel and leave for the port.

Boarding the Ship – Day 1 Afternoon

We arranged for early check-in, and we were due at the terminal between 11:30 and 12:00.  The hotel had a shuttle, but it didn’t run until noon, so we...

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Major Marine 5 Hour Tour

Uncategorized Nov 13, 2019

When we arrived in Seward about noon on Sunday, we had booked a 5 hour Kenai Fjords Wildlife Cruise with Major Marine Tours. I had checked in advance, and they assured me that the wheelchair would not be an issue. 

At the train stop in Seward, the railroad had a hand-operated elevator to unload my wife in her wheelchair.  We then went to the bus that they were using to transfer individuals taking one of their tours.  The coach did not have a lift, but since Cheryl can walk and climb a few steps, it was simple to put the chair in the luggage compartment. 

We went to Major Marine’s location and checked in for the tour, and we were given armbands since we had purchased the onboard salmon and prime rib buffet.  The staff was accommodating, and after we had checked in, they helped my wife down the ramp and onboard the ship in a wheelchair.  The weather was still cool, and it was drizzling.  The warm cabin was welcome,...
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SeaLife Center and our evening in Seward

Our next stop was the SeaLife Center in downtown Seward.  The Exon Valdez disaster settlement funded this facility.  It is much more than an aquarium, it is an aquarium, but its main purpose is to care for injured marine wildlife.  While it may have initially been used for wildlife at risk because of the oil spill, it now takes care of orphaned marine mammals, and also has a variety of birds and aquatic creatures.

My family and especially my granddaughter enjoyed our time here.  We looked at most of the exhibits and some of the shows.  The facility deserved more time than we gave it, but we had started at about 5:00 AM, and it was now almost 8:00 PM and we hadn’t even checked into our hotel. 

We started to wait for a shuttle bus to come by, but the weather had improved, and it was only about 1 mile from the SeaLife Center to the Harbor 360 where we were staying so we decided to walk/roll.  It was a slight uphill grade for the first half of...

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Top10 Tech Gifts for Travelers.

Top Tech Gifts for Travel

Selfie Drones

Selfie drones are a relatively new phenomenon, and the pricing and skill requirements have put this category in reach of the average person.  They allow individuals to capture photos, and that were previously out of reach for most.

When traveling with a drone, the recipient will need to make sure of the laws and rules for drone operation at their destination.  For example, some cruise lines ban drones in any form, and others allow camera drones, but they can only be used ashore.  They need to make sure they are aware of any restrictions and comply with the laws

Zerotech Dobby

This is not the cheapest selfie drone available, but it does have a nice mix of features for the price and is a good entry-level device.

It is primarily a device for selfies and has a limited range of about 300 feet or so, I would worry about losing control outside of that range.  But if you want a great picture from a different vantage point, that...

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