I have had my Monarch Vest for about 5 months or so now, and the absolute best part about it is how stress-free traveling has become.
Cystic fibrosis should never serve as a deterrent to informed travel choices, but I’ll be the first to admit that chronic illness can definitely be a stress point. There’s nothing easy about meticulous packing and, if you’re flying, lugging several bags through a crowded airport and then trying to cram all your stuff into your given luggage space.
Then… when you do finally get to your destination, you don’t want to be spending the majority of your time organizing your meds, setting up machines and doing your treatments. It’s nice when everything can be as self-contained as possible.
Monarch Vest does exactly that.
Monarch is the perfect carry-on – it’s very self-contained – and I say that with a lot of confidence. I fly quite frequently, and I have never had a problem with the flight crew about getting my Monarch onto the airplane as an extra carry-on. That’s right… an extra carry-on. Don’t ever forget that most airlines will waive carry-on rules and restrictions if you have proper documentation to back up your CF diagnosis and medical need. In fact, on a small commuter jet, probably the only kind of plane where the Monarch wouldn’t fit in the overhead, the flight crew found a way to accommodate my needs.
It’s a hell of a lot easier to get the Monarch through the airport compared to some of the other airway clearances devices, and the best part about the whole thing is that I am confident Monarch is doing just as good of a job as my traditional Vest.
The cord-free feature is great, but it’s not essential in day-to-day use. After all… I am tied to a nebulizer during treatment time, but for travel, the convenience makes it invaluable.
Granted, I rarely use the Monarch for its cord-free capacity, since I stack my treatments together, but it’s a nice option, especially for when I am traveling and my routine is different than a typical day.
Though… when I do use my Monarch for its mobility, I like to use it for a good reason…
Ultimately, Monarch has made my crazy travel schedule seemingly stress-free (especially after a somewhat difficult travel experience last year). Monarch is an effective, easy to use device, has streamlined treatment time and allows me to be more productive on the road and in the airport.