Tips For Taking A Wheelchair Friendly Holiday

It’s that time of year when folks are packing their bags and setting off for a change of scene. Wheelchair users should not miss out on holidays, which are great for our mental health and wellbeing. Planning a safe and accessible holiday is perfectly possible, with a little bit of prior research. Here are some tips to help you have a lovely break.

 

Research the location

The first thing you need to do is to decide where to go. An area with good transport links, and not too many hills and steep winding streets may be a priority, for example. If there are major tourist attractions you want to visit, check out their website for information about accessibility, such as lifts, disabled toilets, changing spaces, and so on.

 

Choose the accommodation carefully

If you are holidaying in the UK, there is an accommodation rating system which can let you see how suitable a place is to meet your needs. The National Accessible Scheme is applied to self-catering, serviced, hostel, and campus accommodation. It has separate categories for mobility, visual, and hearing impairments.

The accommodation will be given a rating for each category to indicate who it is suitable for. For example, an M1 rating means the property has minor adaptations, such as handrails. An M2 rating means that some areas are wheelchair accessible, but assumes some limited mobility, and there may be up to three steps to climb.

An M3I rating means that the property is suitable for a wheelchair user, and an M3A rating means it is suitable for wheelchair users who need extra assistance, such as hoists and carers. V1 and 2 rating indicate certain standards for the visually impaired have been met, and H1 and 2 ratings mean that certain standards have been met for the hearing impaired.

If there is anything that you are unsure about, don’t be afraid to ask questions. It is always better to know as much as possible in advance.

 

If you are flying internationally

If you are going abroad, book your flights well in advance, and make sure the airline and tour operator know that you require disability assistance. This is so that suitable transport can be put in place to transfer you to and from the plane and terminal. Make sure that the cabin crew know in advance about any special requirements.

 

Make sure you have enough medication

If you take regular medications, make sure that you have enough doses to cover the holiday, and explain to your GP if you need any extra. You may also need a letter from your GP to present to the security staff at the airport, depending on the quantity and nature of your medications.

 

Make sure that you have the relevant travel insurance in place

You may need more than standard travel insurance, for example, if you want to insure your wheelchair, or have to extra medical cover in place. This is sensible, as if you need treatment in a foreign hospital, it could result in very substantial fees.

 

If you are interested in finding out more information about mobility baths call us on 01491 411041 or visit our website.

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