Tips on Finding the Right
Wheel Chair Accessible Hotel

Finding a good wheel chair accessible hotel can be a challenge. With so many lodging options from which to choose, travelers need a quick way to compare hotels and identify the accommodations that best meet their mobility needs.

The following trip planning steps serve as a guide to help you choose the right wheel chair accessible hotel that can make the difference between a great vacation or a frustrating trip.

1. Begin by narrowing your list of hotel choices.

While wheel chair accessibility is the top priority for a disabled traveler, many travel agents and travel reservation sites forget that a person with a disability has other needs too.

In addition to good mobility access, disabled travelers are also interested in amenities such as a swimming pool, restaurants in the hotel, pet accommodations, and internet access.

Therefore, look for reservations sites that offer advanced search capabilities that allow you to select the specific accommodations you need and amenities you desire. This will enable you to develop a list of viable lodging choices for your trip.

2. Call the hotel directly and ask questions.

Calling each wheel chair accessible hotel and asking the following questions can quickly determine if the hotel is disability-friendly and right for you.

  • "Do you provide special disability services?" This should be the first question you ask. The answer you receive will immediately indicate the property’s experience and desire in assisting disabled travelers.
  • "Which floors are the disabled rooms located?" It is important to be on or near the ground floor in case of an emergency, especially when elevators are not in service.
  • "Are the disabled rooms ADA compliant?” If the answer is yes (and it should be), ask for specifics on how the room is equipped to accommodate ADA guidelines.
  • "Can the beds and other furniture be moved in order to make the room more comfortable and accessible?" Depending on the room size and configuration, you may not need to make any adjustments. Yet, it is a good question to ask particularly if you are unfamiliar with the hotel brand.
  • "How high is the bed and is it easily accessible from a standard wheelchair?" Some hotel beds rise 30 inches or more from the floor. While, wheelchair seats may be under 18 inches. Be sure to confirm that the bed height will enable you to easily get into bed without assistance.
  • "Does the hotel provide a wheel chair accessible shuttle to nearby tourist attractions and public transportation?"
  • "Is disabled or handicap parking available?" You may want to follow-up by asking how many spaces are allocated per wheelchair accessible room.

3. Listen "between the lines."

A disabled traveler should be listening for clues that indicate the hotel has a good understanding of the difficulties faced by an individual with a disability.

If the reservation desk at the wheel chair accessible hotel is knowledgeable about ADA requirements such as passages, counter heights, door hardware, bathroom fixtures, and roll-in showers, there is a good chance the property frequently serves disabled guests.

However, be wary of a hotel representative that appear to promise too much. If the hotel seems too good to be true... it probably is.

This article was written by Blair Jensen of

Disabled Travel Resources
Accessible Travel Tips

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Published by Jules Sowder

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