For people with disabilities, finding accessible hotel rooms can be a challenge. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to find places to stay in your desired vacation destination. Use this guide to help find where to stay in the area you will be traveling in.
While some hotels will advertise on their websites or on travel websites that they have accessible rooms available, it's always a good idea to call and verify that you have been booked in an accessible room. You don't want to arrive only to find out that you have been booked in a standard room. If you are vacationing during the busy season, this may mean the hotel won't be able to put you in an accessible room.
Ask About The Bed
If you use a wheelchair, it's important to ask about the bed in your room when you call to confirm your reservations. Hotel beds can be higher off the ground than your bed at home, and you may have difficulties getting in and out of bed. You may be able to arrange to have the bed modified by adding a different mattress to make it more accessible.
Find Out What Floor You Will Be On
Accessible rooms should be on the first floor, as this will ensure you are able to get out in the event of an emergency. While the hotel may offer elevators and accessible rooms on other floors, you won't be able to get to the exits if you are on an upper floor with a wheelchair. Don't be afraid to ask that your room be switched to a different floor so you can feel more at ease.
Inquire About Other Services
Some hotels offer additional services for people with disabilities. Be sure to ask about them before you select a hotel. Some offer accessible transportation to and from the airport and local attractions, while others offer additional amenities in their rooms. You'll also want to know what parking is like, as some hotels have parking lots that are separate from the hotel structure, which can make it more difficult for you to get to your vehicle. Here are a few upgrades and services to look for:
- Audio/visual smoke detectors
- Vibrating alarm clocks
- Lowered sink counters, closet poles and dressers
- Added grab bars on walls
- Braille room service menus
- Connecting rooms for caregivers
- Valet parking/parking assistance
The key to finding a great place to stay is to do your research first (for example, scheduling a Hamptons vacation in a place like The Baker House 1650). This will ensure your hotel room offers everything you need to feel comfortable and at home during your stay.