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Old 09-23-2012, 11:08 AM   #16
owensdad
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Originally Posted by Samaya View Post
If you are flying with Virgin and not done so already try contacting their special assistance team on 0844 412 4455, they may have some answers that might make flying a little easier.

Also could booking two premium seats for Owen or two-three economy seats behind the middle galley where he could lay out be an alternative and therefore cheaper than First for you all?
We did look at that, Virgin aren't really the most helpful in these situations, they don't really bend much to the needs of severely disabled in my experience. We thought about 2 premium seats but this would cost as much as 1 first class, and the 3 economy option would be the same, maybe a couple of hundred cheaper but not sufficiently cheaper to choose that option, I really can't see any other way around other than first class as we need the space to change him when needed and we also need a good lying down position.
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Old 09-23-2012, 02:14 PM   #17
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My son was tube fed, needing a pump to be fed, as well as needing special meds administering also and in nappies so we needed a great deal of space, I will say that virgin were great for us.

I would certainly say that there are cheaper options than first class to get your son there. The Premium option would be cheaper than first class.

So what are you doing to raise funds?

Last edited by wayneg; 09-23-2012 at 02:28 PM.
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Old 09-23-2012, 04:18 PM   #18
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Your son has the most amazing eyes and smile. Good luck with your fundraising as he looks a very special boy.

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Old 09-23-2012, 05:13 PM   #19
owensdad
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Originally Posted by kevin harrison View Post
My son was tube fed, needing a pump to be fed, as well as needing special meds administering also and in nappies so we needed a great deal of space, I will say that virgin were great for us.

I would certainly say that there are cheaper options than first class to get your son there. The Premium option would be cheaper than first class.

So what are you doing to raise funds?
What did Virgin do for you with regards to space? When we went for Owen's Make A Wish we travelled in economy, it was a struggle with him even then when he was much smaller, the tube feeds and giving him his meds are not a problem at all, it all goes through the button and job done, very simple, but his sheer size now (he is like a 9/10 yr old) and weight would make it impossible, the seats in economy don't recline much at all, same with premium economy, and as Owen needs to use a special seat insert aswell it doesn't help with the situation, and sitting normally for such a long time would really be painful for him as he has developed scoliosis in the last year, probably due to his weight gain and the result is that we now have a nice curved spine which doesn't bother too much as long as his position is changed frequently.

Not only the above issues are what we have to overcome, we can no longer lay Owen on the floor to change him like we did last time we went, it was fairly easy to scoop him up back then but these days we have to use a hoist to get him off the floor, he's just such an awkward load to handle due to having no rigidity in him at all, imagine picking up a big bag full of water, thats almost what its like and it makes his 30kg feel much much heavier and awkward to move around.

To be honest i've mulled it over and over and really can't see any other way due to the needs Owen has, on the planes there just isn't the space to work with, and lets face it, changing his incontinence stuff on the galley floor is not good, ignoring the fact i'd never lift him back up again, its just not dignified.

As for fundraising, we haven't done a great deal at all yet, some friends have done auctions, nights out etc which have been wonderful, but it does take a huge effort and time is always against us, it was hard last year raising funds with a skydive and lots of other things and took alot out of us, but it was well worth it, we raised a nice total and used some for his last trip to Disney Paris and gave half to the Menkes Foundation. We will obviously come up with more things and just work and save as much as we can, but like I said time is the one thing that really works against us as I work all hours and my wife has her hands mainly tied with Owen's needs and our daughter Olivia who has just started school.

But, despite it all we are very much determined to do this, our lives exist purely for Owen and Olivia, and whatever needs to be done then so be it, we love our life and wouldn't have it any other way, it may be selfish to some but in our eyes there is nothing outside of our two children.
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Old 09-24-2012, 08:06 AM   #20
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would it maybe possible to have a extended trip and do a 6 day transatlantic crossing ? they start from 599 ( so im assuming not more than first class)
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Old 09-24-2012, 01:27 PM   #21
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would it maybe possible to have a extended trip and do a 6 day transatlantic crossing ? they start from 599 ( so im assuming not more than first class)
I'm actually considering that, its alot cheaper than flying first class, thats around £2k and I am not the best flyer! But there and back would take 12 days so its an awful lot longer and also we need to consider any medical emergencies and how they are dealt with, at least on a plane you are only hours from anywhere but stuck on a ship and you end up days from help.
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Old 09-24-2012, 03:28 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by owensdad View Post
I'm actually considering that, its alot cheaper than flying first class, thats around £2k and I am not the best flyer! But there and back would take 12 days so its an awful lot longer and also we need to consider any medical emergencies and how they are dealt with, at least on a plane you are only hours from anywhere but stuck on a ship and you end up days from help.
I think it's an excellent idea actually. Have you contacted ferry companies, can imagine large insurance premiums though.
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Old 09-26-2012, 06:23 AM   #23
bex7583
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well what about ferry one way flight the other then maybe if you know you only have to fly one way you could look it to some of the other options suggested such as getting 3 or 4 seats for owen then the rest of the family one standard seat each , or im not sure how well it would work but how about having only 2 first class seats and yourself and your wife taking shifts to sit with owen , while the other 2 members are in the coach class , i know its nice to be together as a faimily but if it saves you quite a bit and you are only flying in one direction its another option

but to do the ferry both ways would just extend the holiday :0 it would really be a ultimate lifetime trip for you all
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[COLOR="Magenta"]carribean beach
wyndham orlando/clearwater hilton
disney paris- hotel sante fe 2008
port orleans riverside/ lake buena vista/miami/keywest + marathon/clearwater beach aug 2013

planning next trip 2014???



UK SPENDING GAME NUMBER 13
£44 bagged coins banked
£130 bagged coins

-----
£174 total taken out of tin so far


<a href="http://distickers.com/ticker/"><img src="http://distickers.com/ticker/tickers/yekt2jpwokcyjp9o.png" alt="DIStickers.com Ticker" border="0"/></a>


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Old 09-26-2012, 06:27 AM   #24
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also if it was me and this trip meant so much to be i would be totally reckless and just get a loan book exactly what i want to make thing as easy as possible then worry about it after not saying its a best idea but hey its only money and u can always pay it back as you well understand you dont have forever to make these memories
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[COLOR="Magenta"]carribean beach
wyndham orlando/clearwater hilton
disney paris- hotel sante fe 2008
port orleans riverside/ lake buena vista/miami/keywest + marathon/clearwater beach aug 2013

planning next trip 2014???



UK SPENDING GAME NUMBER 13
£44 bagged coins banked
£130 bagged coins

-----
£174 total taken out of tin so far


<a href="http://distickers.com/ticker/"><img src="http://distickers.com/ticker/tickers/yekt2jpwokcyjp9o.png" alt="DIStickers.com Ticker" border="0"/></a>


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Old 09-26-2012, 03:03 PM   #25
owensdad
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I know what you mean, i've considered the loan thing, but the holiday is going to be very expensive I think, there are 5 of us, I know we could get away with 2 first class seats but if its a holiday of a lifetime then we should really all be together, so five of us with the cost of staying in Disney itself and then adding the Disney park tickets and dining plan money it kind of adds up to somewhere around the £20k mark, alot of money really.

The thing that puts me off the boat is the fact that if Owen gets into trouble health wise then its not easy to get help, at least on the plane even long haul you are never more than a few hours from help.

It may not be do-able but we are going to give it our best shot, we have to for Owen, nothing else matters really right now.

Somebody mentioned to me the other day about contacting someone like Richard Branson and ask him to donate the seats on a flight, seems like a great idea but i've no idea how to go about something like that, I mean its not like you can just pick up the phone and talk to the guy!
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Old 09-27-2012, 06:14 AM   #26
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Are you on Twitter? I know Richard Branson sometimes responds to tweets on there.

Anyway I just really wanted to wish you good luck! My sister was severely disabled and we often talked about how wonderful it would have been to have taken her. We could never get it to work out for us with her medical needs, insurances etc so I really hope you find a way to do it

With regards to accommodation (when you get that far) have a look on the DVC rent/trade board. Renting a 2 bedroom at certain times of year can work out a much better deal than booking direct through Disney and give you the extra space and bathrooms that would help.

Have you tried contacting some charities like make a wish? Whilst they may not be able to assist with cost they may be able to point you in the right direction or offer help with getting appropriate transport arranged.
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Old 09-27-2012, 05:46 PM   #27
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Are you on Twitter? I know Richard Branson sometimes responds to tweets on there.

Anyway I just really wanted to wish you good luck! My sister was severely disabled and we often talked about how wonderful it would have been to have taken her. We could never get it to work out for us with her medical needs, insurances etc so I really hope you find a way to do it

With regards to accommodation (when you get that far) have a look on the DVC rent/trade board. Renting a 2 bedroom at certain times of year can work out a much better deal than booking direct through Disney and give you the extra space and bathrooms that would help.

Have you tried contacting some charities like make a wish? Whilst they may not be able to assist with cost they may be able to point you in the right direction or offer help with getting appropriate transport arranged.


Thanks for the suggestions, unfortunately I don't use Twitter, i'm not that advanced, forums are fine with me through. I had a quick look and wouldn't know where to start to be honest!

We don't actually need disabled accomodation, his chair fits through normal doors, we just lift him from chair to bed etc, and he doesn't use a toilet at all so the facilities would be wasted somewhat.

Unfortunately Make A Wish can't help us with this, i've already asked.

Do you think a letter to a daily paper would maybe help contact someone like Richard Branson? or similar?
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Old 09-28-2012, 04:58 AM   #28
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slightly off subject but my son has autism so we have special need and i have OA of the spine so have mobility issues too... we travelled with american airlines last trip and found them to be much better than VA where SN where concerned, nothing was too much trouble and cabin crew were v helpful...


i understand our needs are no where near as severe as yours but might be another option??
one of my eldest sons friends is doing a MAW trip (she has cancer at 14) and they contacted laods of celebs and got signed pictures, concert tickets etc and did an ebay raffle and raised the £2k spending money they needed... just an idea

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Old 09-28-2012, 05:06 AM   #29
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I don't think it's really so much of an issue with VA themselves, more that due to how Owen is we just need to go in upper class, aside from being able to move him from sitting to more or less lying flat, its needed for changing him, he would need to be changed at least twice on a 9 hour flight and needs to be lying flat really, its now impossible to have him on the floor doing this as we need a hoist to get him back up.

I'll be looking into the possibility of just 2 upper class seats as that will definately ease the finacial burden but not entirely sure if we would be allowed to swap and change through the flight.

I like the idea of contacting celebs etc, but how does someone go about it?

I'll dig into it for sure.
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Old 09-28-2012, 05:30 AM   #30
bex7583
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definatley twitter for some celeb stalking , do you have a friend or family member that can help you with that

im sure if you explain to the crew why u will be switching the person who is sitting in the upper class seat it will be fine ( not like u are there for the free booze )
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[COLOR="Magenta"]carribean beach
wyndham orlando/clearwater hilton
disney paris- hotel sante fe 2008
port orleans riverside/ lake buena vista/miami/keywest + marathon/clearwater beach aug 2013

planning next trip 2014???



UK SPENDING GAME NUMBER 13
£44 bagged coins banked
£130 bagged coins

-----
£174 total taken out of tin so far


<a href="http://distickers.com/ticker/"><img src="http://distickers.com/ticker/tickers/yekt2jpwokcyjp9o.png" alt="DIStickers.com Ticker" border="0"/></a>


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