Unlike in the past, today people with disabilities are recognized and less discriminated against. In many countries there is legislation that protects them and makes their lives a little easier. Additionally, many public buildings have been designed or renovated to accommodate people traveling with disabilities.
With all these improvements, people with disabilities can now travel to places far from home for leisure or business. With all these improvements we have made, traveling for people with disabilities continues to be a challenge for them, especially when traveling alone or traveling to an unknown destination. Below is a guide to help people with all types of disabilities travel safely.
1. Plan well in advance
Planning is the key to any kind of success. This is very important because it reduces the possibility of jams and hassles. Booking flights and hotel rooms is a priority, but if you’re staying with a friend or family member; informing them in advance is very important. They can then be prepared and even pick you up at the airport.
2. Book hotels suitable for people with disabilities
Hotels with handicapped structures are very convenient because they allow handicapped people to move freely with minimal effort. Most of these hotels also have special emergency protocols in place to ensure that people with disabilities are not left behind in the event of an emergency, unlike some hotels where these issues are overlooked.
3. Use a travel agency that offers travel packages for disabled travelers
Booking flights and hotel rooms with travel agencies that offer travel solutions for people with disabilities is beneficial in several ways. They make sure to book handicap-friendly airlines and hotels for their handicapped customers. They strive to provide services and suggestions that ensure their customers can travel comfortably.
4. Understand and know your rights at the airport
Travel is very hectic for people with disabilities, especially when they arrive at the airport. They face the challenge of getting good information and clues. Added to this is the large number of people traveling and the long queues. At airports, there are escorts who are supposed to attend to the needs of people with disabilities.
Disabled travelers should not and will not be treated differently if they take security measures. They are also protected from any form of discrimination by any airline. Disabled travelers are advised to be well aware of their rights to avoid and report any form of discrimination while traveling.
5. Carry extra medications
It doesn’t hurt to carry an extra dose of medicine when you travel. People lose their luggage while traveling, so having an extra dose will serve as a backup when a dose is lost. This also ensures that a disabled person does not run out of medication while traveling, forcing them to search for a pharmacy when traveling. These medications must be stored properly to ensure their safety.
6. Carry a doctor’s note and contact details with you when you travel
A doctor’s note contains important information about a condition faced by a disabled person and this will help doctors save a lot of time on tests in an emergency. Your doctor’s contact information allows other doctors to get important information from your doctor if needed. This small but vital piece of information can save lives.