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Jul 30, 2018 01:45PM
Manuella, I will help you out all that I can here. I ran into the same thing trying to fly from Providence and probably spent the equivalent of at least 3 days on the internet putting in all different iterations. Calls to different airlines were part of it.
I have a suggestion here and it would be money and time saving, I think. I checked the bus trip from Midway to Iowa City and it looks to be between 5 and 6 hours.
1. You would have to figure out the timing etc. (another real pain in the butt) but if you took a bus from NYC to Prov, it would be 3.5 hours. I would be happy to pick you up and transport you to the airport, which is only about 20 minutes away. I am going back in October for my checkup and got a round-trip for $295. But here is the thing. You need to fly on the least expensive days. I am leaving on a Wednesday and going back on the following Tuesday.
2. You should be able to stay at the Hope Lodge (I think). Let them know you are going for medical testing, because Dr. Chen will definitely perform the spy test as part of your consult while you are there. If you are having medical treatment, etc. related to cancer, you can stay at the Hope Lodge free. You will have to be in touch with them and they will require your doctor's office to contact them etc. They usually want you to have a caregiver with you (caregiver also stays free) but if you are going by yourself, they just need to know you can take care of yourself. The doctor's office will certainly let the know that. It is a WONDERFUL place to stay, and they offer free shuttle service to the hospital. One of the women here let me know about it and I am grateful to this day. They basically provide everything for you and it is beautiful, clean, and safe. I am staying there when I go back in October. And by the way, Mindy in Dr. Chen's office is a dream. She will help you in every way that she can.
3. There is a shuttle right at the airport that will take you directly to Hope Lodge (or anywhere else in Iowa City.) They charge $39 each way, which is a bargain.
4. Delta airlines is incredible. They give you a 10% discount if you are flying for medical purposes. They are the most helpful airlines with whom I have ever dealt. They are now definitely my go-to airlines. One of the agents told me that you couldn't book less than 10 days in advance for the medical discount - they didn't do that when I flew the first time - but then came back on the phone and told me it was all set.
Of course I would be happy to pick you up at the airport and bring you back to the bus when you return.
I guess if you don't mind the 5-6 hour bus ride you could fly to Chicago and take the bus. I offer the other as an alternative only because I am claustrophobic and would by very unhappy to be in a bus 5-6 hours. 3.5 is more doable for me. Please let me know if there is any other information you need and I will be happy to try to find it. :)
I'M DOWN WITH CHEMO!