We are still currently experiencing a COVID pandemic, but states are starting to opening to travel again. When you feel it’s safe to travel again this blog will help you find travel sites that cater to people with different types of disabilities.
Anthony Bourdain once said, "travel isn't always pretty. It isn't always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that's okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves a mark on your consciousness, on your heart, and your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind." I love this quote for many reasons, and I think it is especially true for people with disabilities. Even when I have done my research and confirmed the necessary accommodations, often I arrive to find nothing is accessible. One problem with finding accessible accommodations when traveling is that accessible means different things for different people. Traveling with a severe mobility impairment is often uncomfortable and frustrating but, in my opinion, worth the hassle. I have had amazing trips with few mishaps, but most of my trips had multiple disability-related complications. I have researched accessible travel many times over the years, but I recently found some websites that have me excited about hitting the road again soon. Here are four of my favorites.
Wheel the World
Wheel in World offers tour packages in the United States and across the World. The list of countries Wheel the World offers is extensive. Travel packages include activities and excursions that are wheelchair accessible, and they have people at each destination willing to assist people with mobility impairments. One unique feature of Wheel the World is that they offer customized tour packages. Some of the places mentioned on their website are Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, Fiji, Netherlands, and much more. The website has beautiful pictures and detailed explanations about the accessible adventure packages you can buy. Wheel the World supplies the adaptive equipment for many of the activities they advertise. The prices are reasonable for many of these exotic and accessible destinations. Looking through the Wheel the World
website got me excited about my next adventure. One specific trip that appealed to me was Tenerife Spain, which the largest of the Canary Islands. According to the website, people on the island go the extra mile to assist when needed. Las Vistas beach in Spain has a wide promenade, floating wheelchairs, and all-terrain chairs. Las Vistas beach is my idea of a good time!
is another of my favorite accessible travel websites because you can filter your travel options for different types of disabilities. TravelStride compiles packages for many different accessible travel companies. Two of the unique trips I found on TravelStride was an accessible African Safari in Durban, South Africa, and a trip to Peru to see Machu Picchu, neither of which I did not think was possible for wheelchair users. TravelStride’s website also has helpful articles providing tips on traveling with a disability. TravelStride offers a Flexipass, which is pre-paying for travel. The benefits of the Flexipass mentioned on the website are the savings of up to $600 per person. Once you purchase the Flexpass, you can cancel your booked travel at any time, and the pre-paid voucher is valid for the next two years. The Flexipass from TraveStride was the number one rated product on Product Hunt
. I like the Flexipass because of their generous cancellation policy since travel is uncertain due to the pandemic. The prices on TravelStride seem reasonable, yet traveling is expensive. I would rather spend money or travel than on things since travel has given me the best memories of my life.
specializes in European destinations for people with disabilities. Sage Traveling has an extensive library of reviews that you can research before choosing your travel destinations. Also, Sage Traveling will work with you on fully customizing a European vacation, eliminating barriers to access. The founder of Sage Traveling is a well-traveled wheelchair user, John Sage. John has personally visited and evaluated the accessibility of the hotel and destinations. I think it's important that a wheelchair user visit travel destinations because we catch barriers to access that others might miss. I always favor spending money with disability-owned businesses, another reason that Sage Traveling is on my favorite’s list.
I love that Travel-for-All
is a small travel agency with travel agents who also have disabilities. Their mantra is, "Disability will never be a constraint anymore, as long as your mind envisions and dreams of adventure, we can get you there." Their website has pictures and bios of each travel agent, another unique aspect of Travel-for-All is their Travel Ambassador Program. Travel Ambassadors are people who love to travel and share their travel stories and insights with the subscribers of the Travel-for-All newsletter. The perks of being a Travel-for-All Ambassador are a 15% discount on travel books with their agency, and if you host a group to different destinations, you can travel at a reduced cost of free. The ambassador program is something I plan to participate in as soon as possible.
Traveling feeds my soul, and I know that I am not alone in feeling that way. I have never let my disability prevent me from packing a bag and getting on an airplane to find my next adventure. The place I have seen and the people I have met have made me a better version of myself. These travel websites specialize in helping people with disabilities, but that doesn't ensure that everything will go perfectly. All travelers with or without a disability know that there will be problems that will require flexibility. Patience is a virtue, which is especially true for travelers with a disability. Have a blast planning your next adventure, and go live your best life possible!