Where will you go? A trip to the Grand Canyon, perhaps; to visit relatives in Texas; or maybe just spending a few sun-drenched days relaxing on the beach. Having special needs doesn’t mean you can’t travel far and wide.
On the contrary, wheelchair accessibility can be found virtually anywhere in the country and even around the world. But the key to full-fledged traveling with special needs is proper planning. So before you pack your bags and roll aboard your conversion van let’s start planning your picture-perfect wheelchair accessible vacation.
Call Ahead to Verify Wheelchair Accessible Locations
For every part of your journey, whether it is a road trip to another part of the state, or across the country, you should make sure your destinations are all wheelchair accessible. While most hotels and resorts are ADA compliant, a bed and breakfast or the private home you are renting may not be.
You can call or email where you intend on staying to make sure that their facilities are accessible. You should also find out if the tourist destinations or anywhere you plan on visiting also has accessibility and sufficient handicap parking.
During busy seasons or busy times of the week when parking may be limited getting around town may be more difficult, especially in major cities. Going at off-peak times of year when there are fewer crowds can make getting around easier and less costly. Also, planning ahead of time will give you some wiggle room for changing your mind or dealing with unexpected changes in your schedule.
Use a Travel Agent to Help Make Preparations
Travel agents have a wealth of information at their fingertips. And using a travel agent to help you make all of the necessary preparations with your need for accessibly can be very helpful. Also, if anything goes wrong during your travels, you will have someone to call to help make alternate arrangements.
Make Sure Your Wheelchair Accessible Van is Ready
Before embarking on a road trip, make sure your vehicle is properly maintained. This may include changing your oil, rotating your tires, having an alignment, and checking that your fluids are at the right level.
Make sure the lower door tracks are clean, and lightly lubricate the ramp, and maybe even the hand controls. If you are driving, take note of accessible rest stop areas along your intended route. Most rest stops accommodate wheelchairs, but not all.
There are many different options for wheelchair accessible vehicles you can use on your vacation. Depending on the amount of space and comfort you prefer, you can rent or buy a mobility van upfit that is better equipped for the journey.