Traveling With A Disability: Ensure That Your Hotel Can Provide These Accessible Features

Posted on: 28 June 2017

When you're traveling and you have mobility challenges, you want to book lodging at a hotel that will best suit your needs. Although you can expect hotels to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, some properties go above the beyond the minimum requirements to provide lodging that is highly comfortable for those in wheelchairs, who use walkers, or otherwise have difficulty getting around. Before you choose your hotel, don't hesitate to perform some online research and call some hotels to see how they address the following criteria. Armed with this information, you can then find the best lodging for you.

Door Width

Doors must be at least 32 inches wide, according to the ADA. However, if you use a wheelchair, you know that getting through an opening of 32 inches can occasionally be a challenge depending on the layout of the room. Determine the width of the doors in the hotel's guest rooms — this should include the door getting into the room, as well as the door into the bathroom. Some hotels may offer wider openings than others, which can be appealing. When you call to ask, make sure that you specify that you're asking about accessible rooms; at some properties, standard guest room doors are smaller than the doors of the rooms geared toward guests with accessibility needs.

Pool Access

If you anticipate enjoying a splash in the pool during your hotel visit, make sure to confirm the degrees to which the pool is accessible. For starters, you want the pool to be located in an area of the hotel, inside or outside, that is easy for you to reach. Additionally, you may need the pool to be equipped with a lift that can help you get in and out of the water. Many hotels' indoor and outdoor pools include this feature, but it's an important one to confirm if you expect to use the pool.

Parking Spaces

Many people with accessibility needs drive or ride in special converted vans. Getting in and out of your vehicle requires extra space, especially if the lift is at the side of the vehicle. As such, it's useful to ask whether the hotel has accessible-friendly parking spaces. Many properties have wider parking spaces designed for people with accessibility challenges; in some cases, these are separate from the traditional handicapped spaces. Generally, these spaces will be positioned close to the building for ease of access.