Always travel with a doorstop in your carry on bag. When lugging a handcycle around an airport or hotel, I don’t know how many times I’ve found myself needing to prop a door open so I can get myself and my handcycle through it. A doorstop is a cheap and simple solution to this common problem.
Always break your handcycle down and travel with it in a protective case. While, it’s easier to maneuver and travel with a bubble wrapped handcycle, it can get damaged. Mine went from Las Vegas to Orlando and was laying at baggage claim in pieces and with a cracked frame. Game over. A Thule hard case is manageable and a great way to ensure your handcycle arrives undamaged.
When checking your handcycle with the airline at the airport, using the correct terminology is important. It is “adaptive equipment”, not a bike. You will always get charged for a bike. It is unlikely you will get charged for “adaptive equipment”.
Arrive early to the airport. Expect things to take longer. Allow yourself extra time. Something typically doesn’t go as planned so expect it and be prepared for it so when it happens it’s not a big deal.
Be nice! Good things happen to people who are friendly and nice. Being rude never got me a better seat or extra assistance.