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I have anxiety about everything including FLYING! I haven't been in a plane since I was a child, over 30 years ago. So, maybe I can get some helpful advice here. I have specific questions.

Economy or Pay extra for first class, with surgery recovery as a thought here?

Drive 2.5 hours to the airport to NOT have to switch flights and save hundreds of dollars or fly from 30 minutes away at a higher cost and requiring switching flights at other airports.

I don't know how to switch flights. will someone help me at the airports?

Carry on bag and purse and CPAP machine and luggage. How many bags should I plan on.

Any and all help is appreciated.

Thank you!

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I would first ask your medical team if there is something you can take to help relieve some anxiety prior to flying. I'm a huge fan of "rescue pearls" - they work great as an all natural stress reliever.

How long are you staying in Mexico before flying home?

I don't think it's necessary to pay extra for Business of First class, if anything pay extra for a confirmed extra leg room seat (pending the airline).

It took me a solid two weeks to not get motion sick in the car (even driving myself) after surgery, I don't know about the 2.5 hour drive... what is the cost of parking at both locations, and gas?

Depending on the airline, most seat back pockets have their own inflight magazine and will give you maps for your connecting flights. Don't be afraid to ask someone where to go, you can also request a "Meet and Assist" to have someone transport / escort you from one gate to another.

As for packing, pending the length of your stay, I would be inclined to pack the bare minimum. the first week after surgery I lived in baggy PJ boxers and a loose top. I did not want anything touching my belly for two weeks. I returned to work after 1 week and wore loose skirts and tops to keep the "touching" off my body.

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12 minutes ago, CrowleysFan said:

I have anxiety about everything including FLYING! I haven't been in a plane since I was a child, over 30 years ago. So, maybe I can get some helpful advice here. I have specific questions.

Economy or Pay extra for first class, with surgery recovery as a thought here?

Drive 2.5 hours to the airport to NOT have to switch flights and save hundreds of dollars or fly from 30 minutes away at a higher cost and requiring switching flights at other airports.

I don't know how to switch flights. will someone help me at the airports?

Carry on bag and purse and CPAP machine and luggage. How many bags should I plan on.

Any and all help is appreciated.

Thank you!

If you can, spend the money on the upgrades. It'll make it that much more comfortable.
The drive or fly is going to be up to you... I'd personally opt for the closer airport.

Switching flights is easy, you'll get information as to what flight you are transferring to and the boards will show you what gate you have to go to next.

You can carry on your CPAP, it's medical equipment and is allowed (I've flown to Nicaragua a few times with mine, zero issues)

As far as how many bags to plan for... That's going to depend on you, how long you are going for, etc etc etc.

Something I don't see, do you have your passport? Pretty sure you need a passport to fly to Mexico now. If you do have a passport and time, I'd suggest looking into the pre-screening for re-entry, this will make your wait coming back into the country much MUCH less of an issue. Standing in line for a few hours would suck fresh out of surgery.

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One of my favorite quotes in the world "Keep it simple stupid" ~Judge Judy.

Now with the cord attached I hope I did not offend you it's just something I tell myself when I try to over-react or overpack or overdo anything. I am also having surgery in Mexico in December from what I understand we will be staying four nights the first being the hotel after our plane leaves we did that on purpose so we have a day to explore California before leaving for Tijuana in the morning we are East Coasters. The next two nights will be spent at the hospital and the fourth night will be spent at the hotel accommodated by our Hospital so the doctor can check in on us before releasing us. my most concerned for you would be the CPAP everything else you have you can pack very light for even in December the coldest it'll probably be is 60s to 70s so pack light clothes. Of course I'm an anal packer so I've already packed my bag two months in advance mostly I packed T-shirt dresses because I know I'm not going to want anything on my incisions. We also already booked our flights so we already know that we only get one carry-on and would have to pay for checked baggage so each of us are only allowed in for one backpack. I just recommend packing light wear clothes slip on shoes your phone in a charger contact the doctor to see if you even need your CPAP machine maybe they can accommodate one for you in the hotel and in the hospital will you really need it under the medical care? As far as the airplane travel goes the less I would have to get on and off a plane the better I would feel and I would pay the extra money for it to me the hardest thing about flying isn't being on the airplane it's about getting through the security checkpoints after 9/11 they started doing the take off your shoes go through the scanner no Fluid over a certain amount so you can't even take a full Water bottle for drinking later so take an empty bottle with you and fill in the water stations around the bathroom areas. I read in some of the other forums that if you tell the airport staff that you just had surgery there more than happy to help you I suggest doing that are you taking someone with you would they be willing to help with your bags? I apologize for the book I just wanted 2 help and add support anyway I could. in a nutshell my suggestion is to pack as light as possible you won't need half of what you bring anyway. Keeping in mind you will be in hospital gown for 2 days at least so the only thing I was really worried about is a light robe and slip on shoes. Best of luck on your surgery.

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My two cents is...

1 I would drive but that’s just me. If you connect Just ask flight attendant where to go they will assist you and if you don’t feel well tell them you need medical asst to the connecting flight

2. Get some Xanax from your doctor so you aren’t stressed lol. Also you can get Xanax in Mexico at their pharmacy it does cost like 20 for the prescription plus meds but still only like 30

3 Ariel Ortiz at OCC sent a car to pick me up. Hopefully your surgeon arranges that. Bring tip money for your bags but you have to wheel them through us customs coming back

4 I’m east coast so I got a hotel in San Diego for extra night with airport shuttle it gave me an extra night and ability to do early flight without stressing the time to get to airport and through border or being tired when I arrived home

5 I did first class on the way back. I could have gone either way but for me it was worth it. I didn’t want the drama of rude ppl with my size or being uncomfortable on the way back. It’s on my credit card and I’m still paying it off but still don’t regret that purchase . I told myself i would never be tight in a airline seat again so this was my gift to myself...

6 I brought way too much and regretted it as us border pack light!!

7 don’t stress. I thought I would feel way worse than I did. I heard the horror stories but honestly all of it was easy least! I drove myself back on a 2 hour rush hour work week with no problem. My recovery was not bad at all. My flight and experience was shockingly easy.

8 not sure who is doing your surgery but if it’s OCC they will take good care of you. They even took me to my San Diego hotel

This was the best decision of my life I’m two mos out I used to take elevator up one flight of stairs now I’m on every Fitbit challenge winning, running up stairs, I’m off three medications, no more CPAP for me and I’ve lost 58 lbs since surgery and 82 with pre op and I’m 46. I have more to go but I got my groove back for sure. Worth every penny if for nothing else but to get extra pep in my step

i wanted to add that I walked all over San Diego I loved that city and so glad I had time to finally see Pacific Ocean. I walked and walked which helped to get rid of gas pains so I felt better on flight. I walked so much I had to get Uber back to hotel lol Also a girl with our group paid for three extra days at hotel in mexico it was only 99 per night and gave her more time to recover and she did tours. She loved it. Marriott in Tijuana nice hotel if they put you there

Edited by ReadyRed
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As someone who has worked for the airlines:

Don't ask a flight attendant for directions to a connecting gate...they will refer you to a cust service agent at the gate or help desk.

Your connecting boarding pass will have gate information, just check with a CS agent or monitors for updated gate information.

Don't ask for "medical" assistance in the airport, it could cause concern and could have someone contact a medical desk to ask for your medical clearance.

Use the meet and assist at the initial point of contact as someone who just needs help connecting, unless on the return you do need a wheelchair, then ask for transport help in connecting flights.

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Thanks you guys. I think hearing from you all and asking questions and reading your answers will make all of this a little easier to handle.

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Good luck. You will be fine!

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58 minutes ago, ReadyRed said:

Good luck. You will be fine!

Thanks. Maybe I should take a regular sized checked bag to carry my computer and everything. Is that allowed? Does anyone know?

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Yes, laptops are allowed in carry ons. Lithium batteries are not permitted in checked baggage.

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Thanks all for your help. I still need to determine if I want to take a checked bag and a regular sized piece of luggage. Too many choices! I am notorious for over packing. Go figure.

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CrowleysFan, just take a carryon, CPAP and a big purse. Wear the same clothes on the flight and home. Don't take a computer in a checked bag because if you do, TSA will open it because the circuitry looks suspicious on X-ray. I was fine in a regular Economy seat, but my flight was only 3.5 hours. Your hotel should have toiletries and such, and none of us are going to win any beauty pageants immediately after surgery. If you pack light and absoIutely need something, you can buy it where you are or borrow it. I was not in any pain coming home, but I felt tired, so although I walked slowly I got around okay. I would opt for the direct flight with the drive because connections can get delayed (and I'd want to save the money.)

You'll do fine. Airports are very well marked and flying is pretty easy these days.

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2 hours ago, Foxbins said:

CrowleysFan, just take a carryon, CPAP and a big purse. Wear the same clothes on the flight and home. Don't take a computer in a checked bag because if you do, TSA will open it because the circuitry looks suspicious on X-ray. I was fine in a regular Economy seat, but my flight was only 3.5 hours. Your hotel should have toiletries and such, and none of us are going to win any beauty pageants immediately after surgery. If you pack light and absoIutely need something, you can buy it where you are or borrow it. I was not in any pain coming home, but I felt tired, so although I walked slowly I got around okay. I would opt for the direct flight with the drive because connections can get delayed (and I'd want to save the money.)

You'll do fine. Airports are very well marked and flying is pretty easy these days.

Thank you. Having not flown, I didn't realize I could bring a purse, my CPAP, & the carry on luggage. I am assuming I can also bring my cane through that. I thought I would have to check some of this stuff.

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the CPAP would have to be in yourcarry on, or your purse would have to be in.it. you're allowed 1 carry on and 1 personal item. medical equipment does not provide Ok as an extra carryon.

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