Road trips are often depicted in film and media as the idyllic, sunset-tinted adventure of a lifetime. While this might be a real part of it, road trips also come with tests of endurance, patience, and cooperation. If you or one of your traveling companions uses a wheelchair, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy the full gamut of memorable and inspiring moments that come from taking a road trip together. As with every road trip, planning one to accommodate wheelchair use takes good preparation and research. Take a look at some of this advice to help you get started on your journey.
Wheelchair users are individuals with their own specific needs and preferences. If you use a wheelchair and want to plan a road trip, you know better than anyone and can judge what you will and won’t put up with on the road. However, if it is your friend or loved one who uses a wheelchair, make sure to ask them about what they might need on the trip. It’s best if everyone taking the journey is involved in the planning, particularly if one or more of the members of your group uses a wheelchair.
Where Will You Go?
Every good road trip needs some stops along the way, as well as a destination at the end to look forward to. Plan your route as tightly or loosely as you like depending on how spontaneous you wish to be. Just make sure that places you visit have accessibility adjustments, such as ramps, to make using a wheelchair easier. You don’t need to compromise on spontaneity or wheelchair safety when on the road if you plan adequately. This means pinpointing locations on the map that you know will cater to your wheelchair needs but allowing time in between locations to enjoy the freedom of the road.
What Vehicle Will You Use?
One of the most important considerations of a road trip is what will you use to travel the road? For wheelchair-accessible vehicles, take a look at Allied Mobility and see what’s available. Make sure you have not only enough space for your wheelchair but also plenty of water and food for the long journey. Comfort should be a top priority since you will most likely be spending hours at a time sitting in the vehicle, so find some high-quality neck pillows and cushions to support your body during the trip.
Where Will You Sleep?
Chances are that if one or more of your traveling party uses a wheelchair, sleeping in the car won’t be the most comfortable option. Instead, plan some interesting places to stay along the way. Check each location’s website or call them on the phone to ask about wheelchair access, as some remote places might not have updated their accessibility structures yet.
Road trips are all about experiencing something exciting through discovering new places and creating memories. Being a wheelchair user doesn’t exclude you from making the most out of life.