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What information do I need to know when bringing my wheelchair / scooter on board?

All of our ships are wheelchair accessible and offer accessible cabins.

Mobility scooter

P&O Cruises defines a mobility scooter as a three or four wheeled battery powered chair, also referred to as a power-operated vehicle/scooter or electric scooter. Motorised wheelchairs, bespoke machines, and manual collapsible wheelchairs are not included within the definition for the term “mobility scooters”, except Flights, please review flight information later in this document. Please note that we can only accept gel, dry cell, sealed lead acid or lithium-ion battery operated mobility scooters on board. 

When using your mobility scooter on board it is of the utmost importance for your safety, and the safety of others on board, that you drive at a safe speed. Raised door thresholds are present throughout the ship which need to be negotiated with care and you may find the layout of the ship narrower than you are used to. 

When in public areas, please ensure your mobility scooter is clear of any exits or fire doors. The ship’s crew will be on hand in these areas to offer guidance on where to safely leave your scooter. Please also pay careful attention when backing in and out of lifts, as they are often in close proximity to the staircase which may be narrow and difficult to negotiate. In the interest of yours and passenger safety on board, you must drive at a safe speed.  

Guests who require the use of a mobility scooter must occupy an accessible cabin, selected suite or mini-suite to ensure safe storage. Mobility scooters must be declared at the time of booking, or as soon as the need is known by completing the "Your on-board needs" questionnaire, otherwise your scooter may be denied boarding if you are not booked in approved accommodation.   A list of suitable cabins can be found under Which cabins are suitable for a full time wheelchair user or a mobility scooter user?.

The maximum length of a mobility scooter permitted onboard is 120cm.


Wheelchair users are advised to occupy an accessible cabin, but if you wish to travel in a non accessible cabin your wheelchair must be easilty collapsible in one piece and when collapsed must not exceed width 51 cm, weight 45 kgs. Please note that we can only accept gel,dry cell, sealed lead acid or lithium-Ion battery operated wheelchairs on board. 

We will require you to complete a questionnaire prior to your cruise to ensure we are aware of your mobility requirements. You can request a questionnaire if you have not yet completed one, through the Contact Centre, please visit our website for contact details, or your travel agent.

Travelling alone with a disability or reduced mobility 

A cruise ship is quite different to your familiar home environment. Each port is different and the ship has to use different gangways and change disembarkation arrangements to suit the circumstances on the day; these changes can be made at very short notice.

You must travel with a companion / personal assistant who is responsible for providing any assistance that you would normally require at home, our ship’s crew are unable to provide long term or sustained assistance to any guests. 

This includes all activities of daily living for example; washing toileting, eating, dressing and movement around the ship which we are unable to provide, except for arm and wheelchair assistance in getting to the public toilet facilities on board and on gangways in ports of call. If you suffer from dementia you will be required to bring a travel companion to ensure your safety whilst on board. 

If you travel alone and it becomes clear that it is unsafe to do so, or your travelling companion is unable to safely provide the personal care you need, you will be required to discuss the situation with a member of the shipboard management, which may result in you being asked to disembark the ship at your own expense.

Can a wheelchair user stay in a standard cabin?

Yes, however it is strongly recommended to book an accessible cabin as access will depend on the width of the cabin door as this can vary between ships, please confirm cabin details at time of booking the minimum width would be 50cm.  Please note, there will be limited manoeuvring space within a standard cabin, all non-adapted bathrooms have a step (approx 14 cm) and an additional step into the shower making them inaccessible in a wheelchair and specifically for a full time wheelchair user. Some balconies have a step to get in and out of a similar height. Please also note all mobility aids must be stored in the cabin when not in use.

Guests looking to take a mobility scooter on board must be booked into a wheelchair accessible cabin or selected Suites or Mini Suites to ensure safe storage, and it is not possible for them to travel in a standard cabin. If there are no suitable cabins available for you to take a mobility scooter, you are welcome to take an alternative mobility aid, such as a collapsible wheelchair.

Can I bring a folding travel mobility scooter and travel in a standard cabin?

For safety reasons we have designated accommodation suitable for mobility scooter storage based on the size and layout of each stateroom within the parameters of each ship design.

As the models available vary so widely, we are unable to manage individual cases based on the size and folding capacity of the scooter in question. Therefore the mobility scooter policy applies to all mobility scooters, irrespective of size, to ensure a consistent and safe approach across our fleet. 

If there are no suitable cabins or alternative cruises available, we would advise that you bring a collapsible manual wheelchair which can be safely stored inside any stateroom.

Do mobility scooters need to be PAT tested before embarkation?

No, if for any reason a mobility scooter needs to be tested the electrical team will contact you once on board to carry out a PAT test and you will be informed of the result afterwards.

Where can I leave my mobility scooter when not in use 

When not in use, mobility scooters must be left inside the cabin - they are not to be left anywhere on the ship outside entertainment, dining or other public venues unless instructed by crew. This is because their presence will impede a safe evacuation in an emergency situation and these areas are designated to be kept clear as per the ship's safety certification.

Guests who leave scooters parked in these areas will be asked to remove them.

What is the difference between a power chair and a mobility scooter?

The definition of the difference between a power chair and a mobility scooter is;

  • Electric wheelchairs are operated using a joystick mounted on the armrest, requiring less upper body mobility to control.
  • Mobility scooters are operated using a tiller handle and will require both hands to steer and control. Electric wheelchairs have a smaller turning circle than mobility scooters.

Arriving at the terminal with an undeclared scooter

We request that you let us know that you are bringing a mobility scooter at the time of booking, or as soon as the need is known, otherwise your embarkation may be delayed.

However, if your cabin is not suitable, your scooter will be denied boarding and if you choose not to travel full cancellation charges will apply.


You may find the following questions useful:  

Additional Information

If a guest is bringing a wheelchair, mobility scooter and/or has accessibility needs, please request a "Your on-board needs" questionnaire via Polar Online. Please click here for a guide. This will ensure we are aware of the guest's requirements prior to boarding.

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