Accessible Travel Series: SCI Travel and Accessing Accommodations
By: Zahra Niazi
Travelling with a disability shouldn’t limit your wanderlust! It’s essential to ensure accessibility and inclusive accommodations when planning your adventures. From wheelchair-accessible rooms and ramps to tactile signage and audio guides, there are options available to make your journey comfortable and enjoyable.
Examples of accommodations and services:
- Wheelchair-accessible hotel rooms and facilities.
- Ramps and elevators for easy access.
- Accessible transportation options such as wheelchair-accessible vehicles or lifts.
- Tactile signage and Braille information for visually impaired individuals.
- Audio guides and captioned tours for individuals with hearing impairments.
- Assistance with baggage handling and mobility aids.
- Accessible restrooms equipped with grab bars and spacious layouts.
- Inclusive recreational activities and attractions that cater to diverse abilities.
- Trained staff members who understand and support the needs of travelers with disabilities.
When looking for accommodations that are accessible for individuals with disabilities, here are some steps to consider:
Research: Start by researching destinations that are known to be disability friendly. Look for cities or countries that prioritize accessibility and have a range of accessible accommodations.
- Accessible Travel websites: Websites like accessibletravel.online and www.accessable.co.uk provide destination-specific information and recommendations for accessible accommodations.
- Travel Blogs: Look for travel blogs that focus on accessible travel, such as WheelchairTravel.org or CurbFreeWithCoryLee.com, where bloggers share their experiences and recommendations.
Accessibility Filters: Utilize online travel platforms that offer accessibility filters. These filters allow you to narrow down your search specifically to accommodations with accessibility features such as wheelchair ramps, accessible bathrooms, or other relevant amenities.
- com: Utilize their accessibility filters to search for accommodations that meet your specific needs.
- Airbnb: Use their accessibility filters to narrow down listings based on accessibility features.
Reviews and Ratings: Read reviews and ratings from other travelers with disabilities. Look for feedback regarding the accessibility of the accommodations, including any positive or negative experiences they may have had.
- TripAdvisor: Read reviews and ratings from fellow travelers, and specifically look for feedback on accessibility aspects of accommodations.
- Google Maps: Check the reviews and ratings for accommodations to get insights from previous guests.
Contact the Accommodations: Reach out directly to the accommodations you are considering. Inquire about specific accessibility features, such as accessible entrances, door widths, bathroom accessibility, and any other accommodations you may require. Don’t hesitate to ask for photos or detailed descriptions if needed.
- Email or Phone: Reach out directly to the accommodations you are interested in. Ask about their accessibility features, availability of accessible rooms, and any other specific requirements you may have.
Local Disability Organizations: Seek assistance from local disability organizations or advocacy groups at your destination. They may have valuable information or recommendations for accessible accommodations.
- Local Tourism Boards: Contact the tourism boards or visitor centers at your destination, as they can provide information on accessible accommodations and resources.
- Disability Rights Organizations: Reach out to local disability organizations or advocacy groups for recommendations on accessible accommodations.
Online Communities: Join online communities or forums dedicated to accessible travel. Fellow travelers with disabilities can provide personal recommendations and tips based on their experiences.
- Facebook Groups: Join groups like “Accessible Travel” or “Traveling with Disabilities” to connect with fellow travelers and ask for recommendations.
- Reddit: Explore subreddits such as r/DisabledTravel or r/AccessibleTravel to seek advice and suggestions.
Plan Ahead: It’s crucial to plan and book accommodations well in advance to ensure availability and to allow time for any necessary arrangements or modifications.
Remember, clear communication with the accommodations about your specific accessibility needs is key to ensuring a comfortable and inclusive travel experience.