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Summer Travel

Reprinted from PN August 2012

When you're planning a vacation or other trip, use these tips to make your travel as hassle-free as possible.

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Summer will be gone before you know it, but there is still time to take a great vacation, even if you have to make a few extra arrangements for traveling in a wheelchair.

Nathan Watkins, president of Troy Technologies, a company specializing in travel wheelchairs and accessories, shares some tips on how to make summer travel as hassle-free as possible.

Plan Ahead

One of the most important things to do before booking your trip is call ahead and relay your needs to the services you will use during your trip.

“Although it is required by law for service providers to accommodate people with specials needs, most need time beforehand to make these arrangements,” says Watkins. “And don’t be afraid to go into detail about your disability. The more information you give, the better the accommodations you will get.”

Be Prepared

Watkins advises that when you travel far from home, make sure to clear the trip with your doctor beforehand. It can help prepare you and your traveling team in case of a medical emergency.

“By letting your doctor know where you are going, they can often help give you advice about what challenges to expect that you might not have anticipated,” says Watkins.

Pick the Right Place

Most places and almost all forms of transportation are now wheelchair accessible.

However, Watkins advises to always read the reviews and get the best accommodations.

“If you have a choice between a new hotel and a renovated hotel, choose the new hotel,” Watkins says. “They are better equipped for wheelchairs due to newer safety standards.”

The Right Equipment

Hauling special-needs equipment is inconvenient and not always trouble-free. It can be easily damaged or even lost in transit. It’s also extremely difficult to repair if you’re overseas.

A better option is to invest in a travel wheelchair (travelwheelchair.net) which can make all the difference.

“A travel wheelchair that is comfortable and easily portable can turn a good trip into a great one,” says Watkins.

Several organizations can provide helpful resources:

-          accessible-travel.com/worldtrv.htm

-          independenttraveler.com/travel-tips/senior-travel/disabled-travel

-          disabilitytravel.com/accessible-travel-tips.htm

-          accessiblejourneys.com/blog

-          access-able.com

-         disabled-world.com/travel/wheelchair-travel-tips.php

 

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