Heathrow

Old Feb 6th, 2020, 01:35 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 29
Heathrow

Need to ask you good folks for help. Never come into Heathrow before, but I guess that Immigration is the same pain timewise as all the others. I am now old with rheumatoid arthritis in the hips and I have problems standing for longer than about fifteen minutes and I know that it's going to be much longer than that waiting. Is there any seating in the immigration area? I've thought about a wheelchair, but other than standing I'm very active and am really still years away from wheelchair land! My ego won't let me do it. Are there any other ideas ?
limey10 is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 01:53 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 18,550
Get over it and get the wheelchair.
mlgb is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 01:55 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,509
Use the wheelchair service.
suze is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 03:22 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 17,655
Queue varies all over the place. You stand.

So either buy a cane with built in seat or use the wheel chair service.
bilboburgler is online now  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 05:11 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,734
Where are you from? Heathrow has e-gates for immigration and passport control now. If you are from the US and several other countries, you can use the e-gates. I've never had to wait to go through for more than a minute or two compared to one hour or even more in the old immigration lines.
rialtogrl is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 05:54 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 66,713
Yes, there are kiosks but I entered through LHR in July and Late November and either the kiosks were down or some other snafu caused the immigration queue to be quite long (especially back in July). I was flying Business so had expedited immigration, but could see the general Immigrations lines and they were huge. Even the Expedited queue was a little longer than normal. Sooooo -- the moral is - the queues are typically a lot shorter than in the past but "stuff happens" and if the queues are long the day you arrive - You'll be SOL since there are no seats and you can't arrange for a wheelchair after you are in the Immigration hall.

On top of that the distances walked at LHR from the gate to Immigration can be enormous. Use the wheel chair service.
janisj is online now  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 06:26 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 18,550
Originally Posted by janisj View Post
On top of that the distances walked at LHR from the gate to Immigration can be enormous. .
That is just as big an issue AFAIAC
mlgb is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 06:35 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,734
There are still immigration lines. Use of the e-gates is limited to a few countries.

For me, it went from hell (60 -90 minutes or more waiting in line) to super easy (through e-gate with no queue, maybe one person in front of me.) No snafus, no wait, and shockingly easy. This was arriving in July, late November and early December last year. But it totally depends on where the OP is from.

rialtogrl is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2020, 08:34 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 25,659
On top of that the distances walked at LHR from the gate to Immigration can be enormous. Use the wheel chair service.
So true. I don't like wheelchairs either, but it was a godsend at LHR on my last trip.
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Feb 13th, 2020, 10:42 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 29
As usual, very helpful. Have decided to use the wheelchair option. Although I feel like a cheat - hope no one at the golf club sees me ! Thanks everyone.
limey10 is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2020, 07:30 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,914
I totally sympathize with you feeling like a cheat. Last year in Europe I developed a micro tear in a ligament in the sole of my foot and could only hobble about 3 feet at a time. I had to have handicapped service at the Nice airport, London Gatwick and Seattle-and they even had to use this big machine to lift about 4 of us up to the door level of the plane in Nice. I felt kind of embarrassed that I couldn't manage even the plane stairs. And not to mention all the other people using the service were about 20 years older than I am! But honestly, the service was a huge help-I couldn't have managed otherwise.
jpie is online now  
Old Feb 14th, 2020, 10:45 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 29
Thankyou for the understanding. I guess I shouldn't be concerned, I'm 81 and have had severe rheumatoid arthritis for twenty years. However, with medication I lead a normal and active life, but the one drawback is the hips, they have given up the ghost and although I can walk a mile, I can only stand still, bearing my weight, for about ten minutes before they give out. If they would provide a rolling chair, I could handle immigration, it's the only problem on my itinary.
limey10 is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2020, 12:27 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 25,659
Could be worse. One of the travel podcasts I listen to occasionally did a segment on handicapped travelers. People in their twenties who look OK but aren't have it tougher. I look fine but my hair is white, so I figure I get a pass. Although I do feel I "should" be able to handle it I know some days I just can't.
thursdaysd is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2020, 04:45 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 9,770
I'm going to pile on and suggest to use the wheel chair service. That is what it's for. Don't feel guilty or let your pride get in the way.
ziggypop is offline  
Old Feb 15th, 2020, 07:14 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,914
Originally Posted by thursdaysd View Post
People in their twenties who look OK but aren't have it tougher
I totally agree with this-it helps to look old and weak LOL On my last trip before the foot incident I was travelling with two women friends-one of whom is 83. She is basically in good shape but carries a folding travel cane when she needs to stand in line for instance. We jokingly called it her magic wand because whenever she would whip it out, immediately a person supervising the line would come over and escort us all to front of the line-this happened at places like the airport and even the Orsay Museum! It was great I have to admit.
jpie is online now  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
jh6000
Europe
11
Aug 15th, 2004 02:53 PM
Anne
Europe
5
Jan 22nd, 2002 11:44 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO