Recently there has been a proliferation of mobility scooters on the roads and pavements around the UK, even Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May have been spotted getting a slice of the action in their mobility scooter town centre race. However you don’t have to go to those lengths to choose the right model. Here, Chartwell Insurance, a completely independent insurance broker that offers a specialist, caring service for disabled customers, takes a look at the mobility scooter market and where to go for advice.
If you’re thinking of getting a mobility scooter then a good place to start is the Help My Mobility website, where there is a dedicated section on mobility scooters. It outlines the differences between the three main types: folding mobility scooters, pavement mobility scooters and road mobility scooters. The site also lists six useful questions to ask yourself before buying a mobility scooter such as: is it for indoor or outdoor use, will it have to go up steep hills or does it need to be transportable?
The type of surface you will be driving over is a prime consideration. Some Reading residents have complained of ‘no-go areas’ around their homes because of the poor quality of the roads in their locality. Other users specifically want a scooter that can traverse rough terrain, for example to go fishing, to go to car boot sales or other events held in fields. For this type of use you need a scooter with more ground clearance, bigger tyres, a bigger footprint for stability and a higher powered motor. Consult a specialist like A1 Mobility who can advise you as to what is suitable.
There are a lot of firms supplying mobility scooters and it can be hard to tell who is going to give you the best service. Most will have email addresses and phone numbers on their websites. Contact them and see who responds quickly and answers your questions accurately. You want to choose a firm that is going to provide on-going maintenance, service and back-up in case of breakdown.
Firms giving nationwide service like Pro Rider Mobility have teams of back-up engineers and experts to call on. They also stock spare parts and accessories so you shouldn’t have to wait on repairs. However, if you don’t plan to move around the country, don’t overlook local firms such as Wright Mobility, who cover the North East.
Before buying make sure you try out the scooter. Scoota Mart claims to give home demonstrations throughout the country on a daily basis. Don’t be tempted into buying something that isn’t quite right – it’s meant to help not hinder you.