If you’re planning a staycation in the UK for your next holiday, and you require accessibility for mobility or wheelchair equipment, the best thing you can do is plan in advance. By doing your research ahead of time, it’s possible to have a quiet, comfortable and enjoyable holiday – no worries, no limitations and no nasty surprises. Whether you’re planning on a city break or you fancy a little time in the country, we’ve got you covered.
Here are just a few of the things to look out for if you’re planning an accessible UK holiday or break:
Use your filters
If you’re booking accommodation or travel online, the first thing you should do is look for that filtering option. Many online booking sites allow you to filter disability-friendly or accessible rooms, chalets and properties when you’re browsing. Finding accommodation with the specific accessibility you need is far easier when you’re not wading through a sea of unsuitable properties. That’s precisely when that handy filter is your friend, providing you with a list of accessible accommodations based on the location you’d like to stay and the requirements you have.
Read the reviews
Many accommodation listings may say a place is accessible, but with that meaning so many different things it’s best to double-check ahead of time. Things like steps up to access certain areas, a lack of lifts or frequently out of order disabled accommodations are things you want to know ahead of time. Thankfully, online reviews are a fantastic way to know ahead of time if a location is suitable for you. Accessibility can mean all kinds of things – someone using a stick or walker may be able to navigate steps, while someone without may not. Getting some context into the accessibility included from a third party is a great way to know if a holiday is the right fit for you.
Go for package holidays where possible
In many cases, holidays tend to be more accessible when well-known brands host them as opposed to smaller-scale businesses. While this certainly isn’t the case all the time, for specific holidays, it’s a safe bet to go with the commercial holiday that’s been designed to be accessibility friendly. If you’re considering the Lake District, for example, opting for a package holiday will offer you apparent accessibility to all the activities and entertainment owned on-site. By contrast, booking a cottage or property separately means that the owner won’t be able to make unowned land or public paths accessible for you.
Check out local government websites
For national parks and many of the UK’s biggest cities and most-tourist-friendly counties, local government websites can be a wealth of valuable information. Before booking on that holiday, find the official website of the destination you’d like to travel to. Generally, plenty of details on local attractions, accommodation and even upcoming events will be included. From there, you can visit each platform to find out more about the accessibility of exactly which activities you’d like to do. You can also get in touch with the local councils directly to ask about accessibility quickly and easily.
Use online transport tools
If you’re planning a city break, many of the transport services for these destinations now have accessible journey maps, planners and tools on their websites. Transport For London (TFL) is just one example of this, allowing travellers to plan out their journey around London ahead of time using dedicated accessibility services. If you know where you’re going, and the places you’d like to visit, these apps and tools can be invaluable to guide you – both in the planning stage and during your holiday.
Use a dedicated disability holiday website
If you know you have highly specific requirements for your holiday, there are now particular services out there that cater to your personal needs. Disability-friendly holiday packages are springing up online, allowing you to book holidays that are specifically designed for people in need of accessibility. Not only is this quick and easy, but everything is checked and confirmed ahead of time – which means no problems and surprises on arrival. Sites like Disabled Holidays sort everything for you, from travel requirements to full audits of their properties to ensure it’s the right fit for your needs.
With so much information available online, booking a UK holiday with great accessibility is easier than ever before. With a little research and the help of technology, travelling anywhere in the world is no longer a challenge. By making use of the tools and support available, your UK-based accessible holiday could be better than ever.