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Trip with my older mother

Boston...
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Trip with my older mother

Hello,

We will be in Istanbul for 2 weeks in August, I'm concerned that my Mom wont be able to keep up walking with us, so I'm thinking about renting a portable wheelchair just in case.

Are they available in Istanbul? Where can I get one?

Thank you

Istanbul
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for Istanbul
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1. Re: Trip with my older mother

Joe,

Here are some rentals for vehicles for those with mobility issues: "sahibinden.com/listing/…detail". Your receptionist can call and negotiate for you and I am sure they will deliver it to your hotel.

enigma...

Mount Dora, Florida
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2. Re: Trip with my older mother

Hi Joe, While you can rent a light weight wheelchair in Istanbul I am not sure it will be a great solution for your problem. Managing a wheelchair in Istanbul is difficult in many locations. There are no curb cutouts so the wheelchair must be lifted over the curbs every time you cross a street. Many of the surfaces are covered in cobblestones, making it difficult to push a wheelchair, and lastly, the city is located on hills so you may have to push uphill.

One other issue is that sidewalks are not always available. Sometimes a merchant will have spread out a blanket and turned the sidewalk into a tiny store, or a restaurant may have moved tables onto the sidewalk, resulting in the need to walk in the street. Sometimes the sidewalk just disappears or sometimes it is replaced by a set of stairs.

I have serious mobility issues, and I travel no where without my electric mobility scooter, with the exception of Istanbul, where I still believe it will be more difficult to use than the convenience will justify. Last year I finally decided to take a walker. I purchased a very light three-wheeled walker from Amazon. This is a link to something very similar to what I used. amazon.com/Drive-Medical-Winnie-Walker-Rolla…

I was amazed at the difference this made for me. I was able to keep up with my friends, and it dramatically increased the distance I could walk. Most importantly, I was able to easily move around barriers and it handled well on the cobblestone. My only disappointment was that I did not start taking it five years ago.

You can manage a wheelchair in the pedestrian area in Sultanahmet, and it is not too difficult to use in Aya Sofya. You cannot take it into the Blue Mosque, but they will give you a mosque with clean wheels to use just in the Blue Mosque. Topkapi is a bit more difficult because there are stairs.

To use public transportation it will be easier if your mother can board on her own and you can collapse the wheelchair. You can push her on the tram, but the tram is often crowded and difficult. Someone on the tram will immediately give your mother a seat. The same procedure would work with the ferry. You could, however, push her directly onto the metro.

Istanbul can still be a wonderful experience for older people with mobility issues, but you have to plan for more rest stops, and I try to plan my route so it is logical. It makes me unhappy to walk in the wrong direction or cover an area more than necessary. Planning your daily activities to take advantage of geographical proximity makes everything easier.

Boston...
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3. Re: Trip with my older mother

Thank you so much for taking the time.

Joe

Mount Dora, Florida
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for Istanbul
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4. Re: Trip with my older mother

Joe, I neglected to mention that should you decide to rent a wheelchair you would be able to use it without much inconvenience in the Grand Bazaar, the Spice Bazaar, the lower levels of the Arasta Bazaar and in all of Istanbul's more than 110 modern shopping malls.

You also might want to make sure that the hotel you select has an elevator, or, at the very least, broad and even steps with secure hand rails.

Best of luck.

5. Re: Trip with my older mother

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