Handicap Travel

Handicap Travel

Handicap Travel has become friendlier for disabled individuals. But, you will still have to perform your due diligence to ensure the trip is enjoyable and memorable. Here are a few tips to follow when you are planning a trip with or for a disabled person.

  1. Will you need a car? If you will be renting a vehicle at your destination, ask your travel agent about accessible van rentals disabledtraveler.com has a page where you can look up accessible van rental companies by state. If you are planning handicap travel on your own, this is a great resource to review.
  2. Where will you stop along the way? Ahead of time, plan out places to stop along your route that you know will be handicap accessible. State-run highway rest stops are usually great places to stop, stretch and get fresh air, plus you’ll be able to use the bathroom facilities with little difficulty.
  3. Where will you stay? Most accommodations in the U.S. have wheelchair accessible units, but they don’t always think to tell you if the hotel itself or the surrounding area is under construction. Be sure to call ahead and ask whether there is anything going on in the area that may make wheelchair travel difficult, especially broken sidewalks or roads or out-of-service elevators. Ask what's included in accessible rooms – such as roll-in showers, bath fixtures, and door hardware. Also ask about the height of the beds to ensure you will be able to easily access the bed from a wheelchair.
  4. Attractions? Going on vacation is not only about the journey, but the destination. Wherever you decide to go, check ahead to be sure activities and amenities will be accessible. If you are going to a large attraction, like an amusement park, check into the availability of motorized wheelchair or scooter rentals. You will be covering a lot of ground, so you don’t want to get tired. At smaller museums and parks, check ahead to be sure that all walkways will accommodate a wheelchair and that ramps are available when needed.

Getting ready for your trip

What will you take with you? Pack for a great trip by outfitting your wheelchair and your suitcase with everything you need for a great time.

  1. Wheelchair accessories – Wheelchair bags, removable arm rests, umbrellas, comfortable chair pads and water bottle holders should all be considered if you will be in your chair for many hours a day or outside in the elements. If you will be adventure travelling, consider all-terrain tires for your wheelchair and don’t forget a fishing pole holder.
  2. Handicap accessories – You may need other devices besides your wheelchair. Portable transfer boards or slings, like the Tuk-‘N-Kari™, can be used to easily transport you in and out of the car, onto amusement park rides, in and out of a boat or into a chair if you need a break from your wheelchair.
  3. Talk to a travel agent – If you are going on a cruise or traveling abroad, travel agents familiar with handicapped travelers can suggest itineraries that include lodging and attractions with handicapped access.

Handicap travel requires a little extra planning. Create a checklist of what you need to bring with you, and then map out your trip to be sure you have a fun and safe vacation.

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