Life with MS

Professional Travel Companions

By Jeanette Moroziuk, EMR, NA
The primary purpose of obtaining a professional travel companion is the realization of your travel desires and the enabling of that realization with integrity and respect. The young, the mature adult, the physically challenged, the inexperienced and/or the intimidated traveler can all benefit from the assistance provided by a professional travel companion. Be it business travel, vacations, family celebrations, cruises, adaptive sailing and safari trips, or just an escort to and from your destination, a professional travel companion can make all your travel experiences safer and more enjoyable.
The knowledge and expertise provided by a professional travel companion about such things as common con games played on tourists, crime, hotel security and staying healthy overseas can help you to be proactive and better prepared for your trip abroad.
Choosing a travel companion
Choosing a professional travel companion begins with your initial contact. If there was ever a time to listen to your gut feelings, it’s now! How do the two of you relate? Does this person seem flexible? Will this person have the ability to adapt to unexpected situations? Your needs, your schedule, and your desires should be the number one goal of a professional travel companion. A referral from a friend who is familiar with your personality is always a good start. But even then, a personal meeting with the proposed travel companion, if possible, or a lengthy conversation that indicates the potential for a good working relationship is imperative. A sense of humor and mutual understanding is also beneficial. Age can definitely be a factor, although not in all situations. Sometimes people from different generations just seem to click. Most importantly, you want someone who is experienced, knowledgeable and responsible.
Credentials and qualifications
Professional travel companions are certified in emergency medical services including the proper use of automated external defibrillators. They are trained to recognize medical emergencies and to act quickly and appropriately in these situations. Your professional travel companion should also hold a certified nursing attendant certificate in order to provide the proper scope of personal care. Of course, experience with international travel, the ability to foresee concerns ahead of time and to take measures to address these concerns, and have good problem solving skills are also important. Both their personal demeanor and their professional qualifications are assets that will impact your travel experience and consequent satisfaction. Make sure you ask to see verification of their medical qualifications. In addition, you may want to request a valid criminal record clearance check, as this is certainly within your rights.
What’s the cost?
The expense of obtaining a professional travel companion is dependent on the amount of care that is required, usually with a minimum charge of five hours per day. Levels of assistance may begin at Level 1, meaning that the client is ambulatory and independent, but requires supervision for safety reasons. Level 2 may require minimal assistance with daily activities, assistance with a wheelchair, medication, etc. The hourly rate is set at the industry standard, along with all travel expenses.
Whether its personal nursing care or just knowing the extra assistance is available if needed, a professional travel companion can make your travel experience more comfortable and less daunting!
Jeanette Moroziuk is an emergency medical responder, professional travel companion, nursing assistant and Director of World Travel Care Companions, Inc. She travels frequently with individuals with varying degrees of disability.
For more information
Medical Travel, Inc.
5184 Majorca Club Dr.,
Boca Raton, FL 33486
(Last reviewed 7/2009)