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WTM 2013 - It is Good for Business: Taking Responsibility People with Disabilities

In 2011 we focussed on the market, in 2012 we asked whether the industry was doing enough and concluded that it needed to do more. This year we have four pan...
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What the panel thought about accessible tourism at World Travel Market this month: 

WTM 2013 - It is Good for Business: Taking Responsibility People with Disabilities
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Accessible Barcelona: tourism for disabled travellers - What to do in Barcelona

Accessible Barcelona: tourism for disabled travellers - What to do in Barcelona | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Museums, natural parks, beaches ... Barcelona is a completely accessible city for people with disabilities, it's up to you choosing where to go!
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Claire Hill Helps Make Edinburgh Fringe Accessible | Stagetext

Claire Hill Helps Make Edinburgh Fringe Accessible | Stagetext | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it

Over 20 shows at this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe will be made accessible by Claire Hill Realtime Reporting.

Through working with us at Stagetext and directly with venues, Claire has extensive experience providing live subtitles for theatre and other cultural events. She has worked on plays, spoken-word festivals, author readings, museum and gallery talks, live comedy and stadium events.

This year Clair will be taking on a huge challenge of providing subtitles at the largest art
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How to Find a Handicap Accessible Hotel | Oyster.com

How to Find a Handicap Accessible Hotel | Oyster.com | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it





The mobility-friendly Ocean Pool at The St. Regis Bal Harbour in Miami/Oyster[1]Researching, booking, and taking a trip isn’t always smooth sailing from beginning to end. It takes some time and a little know-how to pull off a perfect getaway. When planning a vacation for a person with limited mobility -- whether yourself, your child, or another family member -- there’s an additional challenge of making sure that the hotel you choose meets your needs. Begin online, narrowing down the property options in your target destination. Keep in mind that finding a hotel that calls itself “accessible” is only the first hurdle of many. From there, you’ll need to start asking the property questions directly.   “The descriptions that properties use to define accessible when it comes to rooms varies -- not just from country to country or from brand to brand, but even from hotel to hotel within a brand. This makes it very difficult for the individual traveling,” says Nadine Vogel, CEO of Springboard, a company that serves people with disabilities. Asking questions like “is your hotel accessible?” or “do you have accessible rooms?” won’t reveal all that much, even if the answer is yes. Vogel stresses that asking specific questions that reflect your particular needs is crucial. To help, we rounded up what you need to inquire about to make sure your hotel is mobility-friendly.






Start by Checking Out Images










Images of a mobility-friendly room at the New York New York Hotel & Casino/Oyster[2]Vogel points out that a good way to start compiling relevant questions is by checking out online photos of the property, especially the areas or amenities you know you’d like to make use of. Those images can be a springboard to smart questions. You might ask something like, “From the photos online, I see the lobby bar is elevated. Is there a ramp to access the bar?” Or, “The gym seems to have plenty of equipment. Which machines can be used by someone in a wheelchair?” If it’s your child you’re inquiring for, then kid-centric amenities should be the first thing you look at. You might ask, “The kids’ camp looks like it offers a variety of activities. What do you provide when the child has a walker and may not be able to participate in all of those activities?” Or, “Does that children’s pool have a wheelchair lift? I don’t see one in the picture.”






Questions to Ask About Common Areas










Pool at the Mandarin Oriental, New York/Oyster[3]Will there be designated parking with a priority location in the parking lot? “Also, ask if you can self-park, especially if your vehicle has special equipment, such as hand controls. It’s not a good idea for a valet to try and drive a specialized vehicle,” says Heidi Johnson-Wright, ADA Coordinator for Florida's Miami-Dade County. Is there step-free access to the main entrance? Does the main door open automatically?Is the lobby level washroom accessible?Is there level or ramp access to public areas, such as breakfast rooms?Is the hotel shuttle accessible? “If you qualify for door-to-door paratransit service in your hometown, you may be able to apply for temporary paratransit use in the city you’re visiting. Just remember it requires significant advanced planning,” says Johnson-Wright. If the hotel shuttle is not accessible, and a free shuttle to and from the airport or into town is included in your room rate, ask that alternate transportation be provided. 

Questions to Ask About the Rooms










The ADA Accessible Deluxe Room at the WestHouse Hotel New York/Oyster[4]Are the accessible rooms located on the first floor? If not, is there an elevator? If I’m going to be on a higher floor, who will assist me, especially in the event of a fire alarm or other evacuation?How wide is the entry to the room, and the bathroom doorway?How many beds are there? “What many hotels do to make a room accessible is reduce a two full-bed room or two queen-bed room to a one king-bed room. That’s fine if you’re comfortable sleeping with your traveling companion,” says Johnson-Wright. “Just don’t assume you can ask housekeeping to bring in a rollaway. Sometimes they can’t due to fire codes.”At what height are the light switches and power outlets? What about the rod in the closet? Are there lever-type door handles on all doors?Is there a roll-in shower? If not, is there space next to the tub to leave a wheelchair? If a tub shower is all that’s available, will a transfer bench be provided? Transfer benches, which have two legs that sit outside the tub and two that sit inside it, are harder to come by in hotels than simple bath or shower benches. “They make it much easier for a wheelchair user to transfer to, then scoot over into the shower,” says Johnson-Wright. You may need to email over pictures to get a straight answer. “Few people in hospitality industry know the difference without seeing a photo,” says Johnson-Wright. Are there grab bars around the toilet and shower?Is the toilet raised? What is the height of the bottom of the bathroom sink?  If you need a lift to transfer yourself from your wheelchair to the bed, ask if open-frame beds, rather than box-frame beds, are available. This way, the lift will be able to roll completely under the bed. 

Leave Nothing to Chance










The mobility-friendly room at the Four Points by Sheraton Levis Convention Centre in Quebec/Oyster[5]Vogel recommends asking the property manager all of your questions via email, so that the responses are documented. Understand that a few different parties may respond based on the nature of the question. If you choose to call the property manager, and he or she is unavailable, ask to speak with someone who has been in the accessible room(s). In either case, jot down the name of the person you spoke with, the date, the time, and a summary of the call. Johnson-Wright also recommends calling the specific property directly, not the national toll-free number for the hotel chain.Ask for a credit card guarantee for an accessible room as well as a confirmation number. Then, reconfirm your reservation for a guaranteed accessible room a couple of days ahead of your stay. This is especially important, says Eleanor Smith, founder of Concrete Change, an international effort to make all homes visitable, since hotels all too commonly take only a request for an accessible room. A request is very different from a guarantee, with the former meaning you will get an accessible room only if one is still available when you arrive. “So far from the more advanced access issues like being able to use the laundry room, you are left uncertain whether you will have a bed at all,” says Smith. Be sure to bring your email print-outs or phone-call notes with you to the hotel. When you arrive, ask to look over the room before you check in to make sure it is what was promised.  The Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality[6] has resources and more information for travelers with mobility-related disabilities. Also, check out Oyster’s favorite mobility-friendly hotels in Miami[7], New York[8], and Los Angeles[9]. 






You’ll Also Like: 7 Questions You Must Ask to Make Sure You Get the Best Hotel Room Available[10]7 Shocking Hidden Hotel Fees[11]6 Important Things to Ask When Checking into an All-Inclusive Resort[12]
References^ Oyster (www.oyster.com)^ Oyster (www.oyster.com)^ Oyster (www.oyster.com)^ Oyster (www.oyster.com)^ Oyster (www.oyster.com)^ Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality (sath.org)^ Miami (www.oyster.com)^ New York (www.oyster.com)^ Los Angeles (www.oyster.com)^ 7 Questions You Must Ask to Make Sure You Get the Best Hotel Room Available (www.oyster.com)^ 7 Shocking Hidden Hotel Fees (www.oyster.com)^ 6 Important Things to Ask When Checking into an All-Inclusive Resort (www.oyster.com)
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Disabled Travel: 2 Accessible Beaches Beckon in South Florida

Disabled Travel: 2 Accessible Beaches Beckon in South Florida | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
In South Florida, two parks offer opportunities for travelers with all abilities to enjoy the beach. Non-motorized beach wheelchair rentals at Crandon Park Beach on Key Biscayne and Haulover Beach in Miami allow easy travel over not-so-easy terrain thanks to big balloon wheels.
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Georgia Top Wheelchair Accessible Attractions

Georgia Top Wheelchair Accessible Attractions | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
The state known for Southern hospitality prides itself on accommodation
for all. These handicap accessible destinations are among the hottest
hang-outs for wanderers on wheels in The Peach State.
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The top 10 wheelchair accessible restaurants in Toronto

The top 10 wheelchair accessible restaurants in Toronto | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Wheelchair accessible restaurants in Toronto are still not as common as they should be. Accessibility can be a huge determining factor for man
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Launch of Accessible Low Ropes Course

Launch of Accessible Low Ropes Course | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
NEWSGALLERY Launch of Accessible Low Ropes Course BY 14:30, 4 AUG 2017...
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Disability Accessible Travel in San Diego

Disability Accessible Travel in San Diego | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
With its mild climate, 70 miles of sun-kissed beaches, world-famous family attractions and popular year-round events and festivals, San Diego is a
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Accessible Design of Public Spaces

Accessible Design of Public Spaces | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Eventbrite - Accessibility Directorate of Ontario presents Accessible Design of Public Spaces - Tuesday, 15 August 2017 - Find event and ticket information.
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Norwich gets new wheelchair accessible sightseeing bus

Norwich gets new wheelchair accessible sightseeing bus | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
An open top bus tour of Norwich was recently made even more accessible thanks to the introduction of a newly converted wheelchair accessible bus.
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Home | Carrie-Ann Lightley | Disabled Travel Blogger

Home | Carrie-Ann Lightley | Disabled Travel Blogger | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Accessible tourism advice, expertise and inspiration from Carrie-Ann Lightley, Tourism for All's Manager since 2005. Disabled travel expert, blogger and writer.
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Accessible holidays in Iceland & accessible travel solutions for wheelchair holidays - Iceland Unlimited

Accessible holidays in Iceland & accessible travel solutions for wheelchair holidays - Iceland Unlimited | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Although Iceland is well known for its rugged landscape, it is nonetheless an accessible destination for disabled travelers. We at Iceland Unlimited can provide you with accessible travel solutions in Iceland.
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Southwark Cathedral - Cathedral with Disabled Access - Euan's Guide

Southwark Cathedral - Cathedral with Disabled Access - Euan's Guide | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Find accessibility information and read reviews of the disabled access at Southwark Cathedral in London.
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Disabled Travel: Oscar Scherer State Park, an Accessible Oasis

The half-mile Lester Finley Trail is a barrier free hard shell-packed trail shaded by canopy much of the way. Sabal palms, Florida’s state tree, line the path. Wheelchair users will find the trail easy to negotiate no matter the type of wheels. The trail meanders along the estuary of the South Creek and passes two butterfly gardens. There are several wide spots with benches for users to pause and reflect on the surroundings. Audi
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Wheelchair-friendly activities in Cape Town | Cape Town Tourism

Wheelchair-friendly activities in Cape Town | Cape Town Tourism | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Cape Town is an inspiring city for everyone, including the elderly or disabled.
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5 Great Wheelchair Accessible Spots in Sydney (Anything Is Possible Travel)

5 Great Wheelchair Accessible Spots in Sydney (Anything Is Possible Travel) | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
5 Great Wheelchair Accessible Spots in Sydney, a post from the blog Anything Is Possible Travel, written by Jeri on Bloglovin’
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Hotels That are Accessibility All-Stars

Hotels That are Accessibility All-Stars | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Accommodations that especially excel at disability-friendly hospitality.
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Accessible tourism

Accessible tourism | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Support tools to help businesses cater for a full range of consumers, from people with disabilities to families with young children and senior travellers.
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San Antonio welcomes visitors of all abilities with an array of ultra-accessible vacation options

San Antonio welcomes visitors of all abilities with an array of ultra-accessible vacation options | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
San Antonio welcomes visitors of all abilities with an array of ultra-accessible vacation options   San Antonio, TX, 2017-Aug-07 — /Travel
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Spin the Globe / travel • Your agency for wheelchair accessible travel

Spin the Globe / travel • Your agency for wheelchair accessible travel | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Your agency for wheelchair accessible travel
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Top 10 Accessible Travel Tips

Top 10 Accessible Travel Tips | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Travelling for anybody can be challenging. Throw in a disability, and it can be even more demanding; but nothing that we don’t believe can be overcome. We have put together our top 10 tips to help wit
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Disability Holidays Guide | Disabled Holidays

Disability Holidays Guide | Disabled Holidays | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
Visit Disability Holidays Guide.com, your comprehensive guide to worldwide disabled holidays for all ages and all types of disability
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The CTO makes 47 beaches accessible to people with special needs (Full list) - Cyprus Mail

The CTO makes 47 beaches accessible to people with special needs (Full list) - Cyprus Mail | Accessible Tourism | Scoop.it
The Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO), as part of its efforts to upgrade Cyprus’ beaches, announced on Tuesday that today 47 beaches were now accessible to people with special access needs, including 26 fully accessible and 21 partially accessible beaches. FULLY ACCESSIBLE BEACHES ———- The following 26 beaches have full access to the beach, as the …
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