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Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
Thanks everyone for all these responses. So much to think about. We are frequent flyers and have been for many years traveling across country at least a couple times a year. I have always been one to do everything I can to be hassle free going through security. Wearing leggings (no pockets - no belts); slip on boots or sandals (depending on the weather); taking my iPad that I don't have to remove from my carry-on bag (I see my husband and daughter removing their laptops and always happy I didn't have that hassle); carrying my watch and any other heavy jewelry in my purse until after getting through security; if I have to wear a coat (being from Western NY - our winters can get nasty) I wear a light weight one I can easily tuck into my carry on bag once inside the airport so I don't have to handle that through security. I am very organized about it and have it down to a science.

When told I would need to go on CPAP, my first thought was 'what about traveling with it'. Admittedly it causes me a bit of angst just having to deal with the security and the thought about hauling an extra bag. Purse and duffle bag can gets heavy carrying them on a brisk walk hurrying to gates. Arriving at our destination so late I casually mentioned to my family maybe I will just not wear CPAP that first night when I know all I can think about is falling into bed. That thought didn't go over so well with them LoL! I was quickly overruled! Big Grin

I guess I am not inclined to change the clock. West Coast is 3 hrs. behind and as Paula02 mentioned maybe that would mess things up from data the previous day. When I talked with the DME about the time change and messing up the timeline they said not to worry about it and it would be fine. The conversation never arose about changing the time on it. At the time I didn't think to ask if I should or should not do that. Seems they would have mentioned it if they wanted me to. We are expected to arrive and get settled in hotel around 3 am East Coast time. So with the noon turn over time, seems like I should be in the clear with at least getting my 4 hrs in before it turns over to the next day. My math skills are not great with figuring it all out. But I told the DME so I guess that is the best I can do at forewarning them. If my compliance is not interrupted between now and then, I will be done with it by the time we travel home.

Kate, good idea making a copy of the card just in case. I guess it never hurts to do that. I would not have thought about that.

PaulaO2 ... yes my husband and daughter are traveling too. We are celebrating New Years in Las Vegas. Our daughter recently turned 21 and will be receiving her undergraduate diploma this month. This trip is for her. It is great she still wants to do vacations with us and those times are winding down. She leaves next summer to go away to graduate school. She will be spending her first spring break (away from us) with her college friends this coming spring. Mom and Dad will be on our own this spring! Maybe I will be feeling 10 years younger from CPAP by then.

I already plan to assign the family to help me. The CPAP has benefits for them too so they can 'share the load' Smile I did see that strap on the back of my S9 bag and wondered it's purpose. Now I know! I don't usually take the wheeled suitcases on the plane with me (just a duffle bag and purse). The smallest wheeled suitcase is usually packed with all our toiletries that can't go through security, so I check it and a larger one with clothes. But the strap will come in handy when departing baggage claim and getting a taxi. We usually go to the rental agency when arriving. That requires dragging everything to the shuttle bus that takes us to the rental center then dragging everything to the car. This time we decided to just take a taxi and get a car a couple days later. We are staying longer than usual and it will cut down on the cost by waiting. We can get by with the shuttles for a few days. So it is good to know that tap water will be ok in my machine. Good thought about the chlorine smell and using bottled water. I won't drink tap water because I don't like the taste. We have well water at home and I am not accustomed to the chlorine taste. Large bottled water is available in the hotel's store and would probably fill the humidifier a couple times.

Zonk ... thanks for pointing out how warm it is for you Down Under. It is currently 23 degrees F here and with the breeze 'feels like' 11 degrees F (according to the weather channel). And snow showers posted for the next 10 days. When I retire, we may be relocating to the West Coast during the winter months.
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Mine fits perfectly in the bag I purchased to carry it. Also have room to carry my and my wife's prescriptions in a smaller bag (which makes it look like it is part of the machine). When I go through the checkpoint, I simply put the bag on the belt and let it go through as a regular carry on. I have done this through many airports (including Las Vegas) and never once have I been asked about it.

I did find a tag from one of the suppliers (#2 from the list I think) that identifies it as a medical device with the ref for the exemption. BTW, I also have a copy of my prescription in the bag in case I need to reprogram it.

Vegas is a fun place - congrats on the trip and your daughter's diploma. We last up there in July (I live in AZ and it was actually cooler there than Tucson.

One thing I do do is that when we leave the room during the day, I put the unit either in one of the cabinets or in a drawer just so that it is out of the way of the cleaning folks. Gives them one less thing to trip over.

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Hi psimpson130,

Thanks for your response! I had been giving thought to what I would do in the hotel room with my CPAP. More specifically the mask and wondering about taking a large plastic bag to put it in or just disconnect and put it in my bag. Not sure I want it being touched by house-keeping when they clean around it. That is a great idea to just put it on the shelf under the night stand.

That is good to know about just letting the bag go through security. Everything I had read says you have to remove the unit/s (I have a humidifier too) from the bag like a laptop. I can do it if I need to but I like simplicity! Smile I may try that and see how it goes.

I just sent away yesterday for an ID tag that identifies it as a medical device with the exemption clause. Great minds think alike! While I was at it, I ran across some skins to decorate the machine. I have done it with my cell phone and thought why not ?! It will be decorated with pink orchids! Big Grin

We were in Vegas end of May. It was really beautiful then! We have been out in July many times. It is hot but you just know to stay in air conditioning. Being from WNY, we have to stay inside 6 mos. a year because of winter. I would rather take the hot weather! I have heard AZ can be much hotter. My niece lived in Phoenix for a while but we didn't make it there to visit her before she left. We have traveled out to the Grand Canyon from Vegas but haven't spent time in other places of AZ except passing through between Vegas and Grand Canyon. We often take trips up to Utah to Bryce Canyon National Park and Zion National Park too. We have always done a lot outside the casinos when we travel out too.

Thanks for the congratulations. She has worked hard and extremely successful with her grades in her undergraduate career. She is done a semester early. She will receive her diploma but will walk in May during Commencement. She will work through the spring to pile up money for her upcoming move. She will be moving to Washington D.C. for grad school. It is about 7 hrs drive from us. It could be worse but we are used to having her 20 minutes away. She attends the university where I work. Having her be of age in Vegas will be different for her. She has been going out with us since she was 6 months old. She can join us in the casino and having a drink at dinner now. She and I always spent a lot of time together in Vegas doing what she could do ... namely shopping ... shopping ... spa ... theater ... pool ... salon ... shopping ... shopping ... theater ... shopping ... you get the picture. We will be teaching her money management in the casino now. She still loves her shopping so we will be doing plenty of that and have surprise show tickets of her favorite band she will get at Christmas. Pools of course are not open this time of year.
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Dear Imasurvivor,

I asked my DME about the West Coast time thing and if my machine was set to 9 on the East Coast. She laughed and said that she had never heard such a thing. Asked that question of my sleep study test tech that used to give people their machines. She just laughed and told another tech about this silly question she just heard. Anyone else out there...what do you think?
:Using cpap then vpap since Feb.2013,
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The only problem would be if the noon cut off made you not reach compliance on the first night. The second night would get those hours but then would lose them to the next night and so forth. Somewhere along the line, a night would have that extra time. The DME would have to be willing to do the math for you and make sure it all comes out in the compliance hours. Which they probably won't since it is all done by computer.

Frankly, it was rude as hell of them to treat you that way and, me being me, I would write a letter to the office head and say so. Compliance data is all about time used and 3 hrs can mean a lot to some companies.
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That is crazy for them to react that way!

First, it is a very logical thought and question particularly when you know each day is being monitored. At first I thought compliance was based on an average. A week into therapy I received a call from my DME mainly to see how I was doing and also pointing out that my compliance is 4 hrs. per night and I had 2 nights under that were flagged red. One 3 hrs. 59 min and another 3 hrs. 49 min ... my other nights were 4+ - 6 hrs. hours. I was 12 minutes under. They don't average the usage or my nights over would have kept me in the black. It is pretty logical to wonder and be concerned about it when you are trying to meet compliance. Since the call from my DME, my hours are 7, 8, 9 hrs. When I travel to the West Coast, I will be 4 nights away from the 30 day monitoring for compliance. I want to make sure a time change and flying through most of the night before I get to bed won't mess that up.

Second, no question to your DME should ever be silly. That is really poor business etiquette. Sounds to me like they don't know themselves.
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Vegas in December is awesome! Are you staying in a hotel on the strip?
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We are going to celebrate New Years in Vegas. It has a certain appeal for a 21 year old. We usually watch New Years from TV at home with snacks. Glad she is gonna be with us so I am not home watching TV and worrying if she is ok! Big Grin She knows Vegas well though and knows the ropes. She is considering going for her Spring Break with friends.

We have gone to Vegas for so many years that we don't stay on the Strip anymore. It is expensive to eat in hotels on the Strip every day and often there are waiting lines for buffets, coffee shops, restaurants, etc. We like to get away from all the traffic and commotion and stay in smaller places away from the Strip. We drive or shuttle over when we want to go. We have stayed many places throughout the years. In recent years we have been staying at Orleans Hotel and Casino. Very reasonable rates. They have shuttles running back & and forth every 20 minutes taking guests to and from the Strip. It is so convenient to let them drive us over and deal with the traffic Smile Orleans has a great pool area and quiet enough you can find a lounge chair (only open during their warm/hot season). Wish they had their hot tub open year round though. We laugh when out there in the winter. Their winter is so mild for us and we are in shirt sleeves, and locals are all bundled in coats. Orleans has a great fitness center, spa, and salon. Several restaurants to choose from (fine dining & moderate dining available), a food court with a variety of little eateries if you want something lighter, a coffee shop and a buffet. They have a TGIF restaurant and Java Coffee Cafe too. There is a large movie theater, bowling alley, and they have an arena where they host events. We see a lot of movies there. It is a nice break from otherwise spending time in the casino, room, shopping, etc. The arena is home of the Las Vegas Wranglers hockey team where they play their home games. They also host a lot of athletic events such as NCAA basketball tournament games. A lot of the athletes stay at the hotel when there. We were there last March and it is a lot of fun being there with electric atmosphere from the excitement of fans and teams.

We went for New Years a few years ago. They close down the strip to traffic and you have to park a ways out and walk in. Last time we went over early evening having walked a couple miles from our parking spot and walked the Strip for hours in the crowd waiting for midnight. Nowhere to sit and rest. The casinos close their doors and only allow their guests access in and out. We all got tired before the midnight hour. We knew we had to walk all the way back to where we had parked the car and left early. We watched the fireworks from a distance at our hotel's parking lot LoL. We are an exciting bunch! This year we are going to go to the closest casino we can get to for parking (have to get there early to find a spot). We will hang out there and have a nice dinner and not go over to the Strip until late evening.

We will be out there a few days before and after New Years when it will be quiet too. Last year for Christmas, I surprised my husband with NASCAR tickets and we went out in March to Las Vegas Speedway. This year we got surprise concert tickets for our daughter to see Maroon 5. I will go with her. Tickets are pretty expensive to buy three. She and I have attended a lot of concerts out there (and my husband isn't all that interested in some of them). We have all seen most of the long standing shows too. We also have plans to go to UNLV basketball game and my husband has been taunting us that he has a surprise out there for us as well.
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Have you ever gone to Freemont Street (the old strip)? Last time we went to the main strip, we asked about Freemont Street and they told us that it was dangerous now. When we went, we had a great time on both strips. Sounds like you have a great trip planned.
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Yes we have gone to Fremont Street a number of times. Have you been there since the canopy with laser light show was built? And vendors scattered throughout the street? We went down before they fixed it up and I never felt comfortable. Very seedy! Since they have fixed it up more touristy with the canopy and vendors, it is ok. But I have heard of some instances there recently that are not so good. I think it probably depends on what hours you go there. We aren't there in the late night hours. The surrounding area down there is definitely not safe.

We subscribe to a newsletter and with it each year we get a coupon book. The coupon book has a lot of great deals in it and organized alphabetical by establishments. Many of the casinos and restaurants all over the city have coupons in the book. A lot of of very nice restaurant deals. We often go down to Fremont Street to eat and use a coupon. The coupons get us out to some really different and nice restaurants too ... including some away from casinos. We like to just go to Sports Bars and have sandwiches and bar food sometimes too.
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