What Is A Transport Chair: A Helpful Buying Guide

If you’re wondering what is a transport chair, all of your needed answers are in this article.

Transport chairs are mainly used to transfer people from one place to another. Unfortunately, not many individuals are aware of this equipment, and they often confuse it with a regular wheelchair. However, there’s more to transport chairs than what meets the eye.


What Is A Transport Chair?

Transport chairs are specifically designed to move people around who cannot correctly do it themselves anymore. It requires a second individual to push the chair and support the person using it. People opt for transport chairs for many reasons, and one of these is its lighter body that makes it easier to navigate and bring on all places.

This is perfect if you think that a regular wheelchair is too bulky and heavy for your usage. Keep in mind that the person using it cannot operate the transport chair. It has to be pushed for it doesn’t have rims to control the wheels.

A transport chair has a weight capacity of 250 lbs, and it is often made from steel or aluminum. The four wheels have the same size of 8 inches. The two in front swivel for easy maneuvering, while the back wheels have brakes if the transport chair engages in a steep platform.


Difference Of Transport Chairs And Wheelchairs

Although these two are almost similar in looks and structure, they have their specifications and uses. Wheelchairs are mainly for people that can navigate themselves using the rims equipped at both sides.

On the other hand, transport chairs require a companion to control the movement of the wheels. They are often seen in airports and hospitals to accommodate people who can’t walk on their own anymore.

If you’re curious to know the rest of the difference between transport chairs and wheelchairs, you can refer to this list:


1. Transport chairs are compact; wheelchairs are not

When it comes to traveling, transport chairs are the better option because they are more compact. Storing won’t be so much of a problem because it is foldable and easy to assemble and disassemble on the road.

Wheelchairs tend to be bulky, so they are harder to bring to places. In addition, for people who are not used to its weight yet, navigating through its handrails can be exhausting.


2. Transport chairs need support; wheelchairs are self-propelling

Transport chairs cannot be maneuvered without assistance because there’s no way for the person sitting on them to control the movement. Wheelchairs are in advantage of this one because they are self-operated. The person using the wheelchair has complete control of where they want to go.


3. Transport chairs are built to be lightweight; wheelchairs are made to be heavy-duty

Transport chairs have lighter body structures, so they will be easier to store and bring along anywhere. In contrast with this, wheelchairs are heavy-duty and built for everyday use and not traveling. Therefore, they both have their advantages depending on whatever causes you to intend to utilize them.


4. Transport chairs have narrow frames; wheelchairs can be equipped with accessories

Transport chairs are specifically built to be able to pass through narrow passages like doors and aisles. As a result, they don’t have compartments and add-ons, unlike wheelchairs where you can attach trays, holders, oxygen attachments, cushions, bags, and more.


Does Insurance Cover Transport Chairs?

Almost all insurance companies cover transport chairs under durable medical equipment. The only requirement is a prescription from a doctor that requires transport chair usage. If you are still unsure whether your insurance covers this, you can always ask someone from your insurance company or research to confirm this.


What To Look For In A Transport Chair?

If you are planning on investing in a good transport chair, these are the things that you should consider first before buying one:



Most transport chairs are lightweight, so they will be easier to fold and store when not used. It’s better to choose the lightest one available in the market. Some also come with a bag to make it easier to carry while traveling.



You should also choose one that is easier to fold and assemble. Flimsy frames tend to be harder to set up and are more likely to break easily.



It’s essential to remember that quality doesn’t always come with a high price. You can find an excellent transport chair at a valuable yet affordable cost.


Seat size

Despite the smaller frame structure, you can get a transport chair with decent and comfortable seat size especially for elderlies. You can also incorporate a seat cushion for a more pleasant feeling.



Before purchasing a transport chair, you should check its breaks first. This is a critical component to avoid getting the chair rapidly down over steep paths.


Turning radius

Make sure to check the turning radius of the swivel wheels. Wheels that are hard to navigate will be inconvenient in the long run, so assure yourself that they are in excellent condition first before taking one home.



Transport chairs are genuinely amazing inventions. They already helped many people with disabilities have a more comfortable life like everyone else.

Now that you are aware of what is a transport chair, there’s no reason to doubt whether to purchase one or not. They show that there’s still something to be excited about even if life gives us limitations.

Leave a Comment