Choosing An Accessible Hotel: Three Things To Consider Before Booking

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If you have a physical impairment or disability that requires special accommodations, you'll want to make sure you choose a hotel that can meet your needs while you are traveling. Think beyond grab bars and walk-in showers when you book your hotel room, and look for some of the following features to make sure your stay is as comfortable as possible.

Hotel Shopping and Dining

You may find it difficult to navigate to nearby stores and restaurants during certain times of the day, particularly when accessible taxi cabs may be hard to find. Having a hotel that offers some in-house amenities can make your stay more pleasant. Check to see if the hotel you are interested in offers 24/7 room service, in-house restaurants and bars, and a convenience shop to meet your needs. Some hotels sell personal toiletries beyond the typical toothbrush and shampoo, which means you won't have to make your way to a local discount store or pharmacy, and accessible restaurants inside the hotel can make it easier to plan meals during your stay.

Accessible Shuttle Service

If you are planning on using the hotel's shuttle service to get to and from the airport or major nearby attractions, call ahead to make sure the van or bus is accessible. In some cases, the hotel can make special arrangements to ensure availability of a vehicle that can accommodate your needs. While some hotels may not offer a shuttle service, the concierge may be able to arrange for a van cab to pick you up and take you anywhere you'd like to go.

First-Floor Accommodations

While some hotels offer accessible rooms on every floor, it's important to remember that hotel elevators can be busy throughout the day and the night. This can make it more difficult for you to get to the lobby when you need to. You may have to wait for bellhops and other customers before you are able to get a wheelchair or walker into the elevator. Having an accessible room on the first floor means you have the freedom to go where you want when you want without waiting for an elevator. Having a first-floor room also offers a safe option in the event of a fire, as you can exit the building without assistance or a need for an elevator.

As you look for an accessible hotel, look at each option on a map to determine how close the nearest restaurants, shops, and medical facilities are. Having these services and businesses nearby can also make your vacation easier and more enjoyable.

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