Most disabilities shouldn't stop anyone from traveling. There are more options and resources for disabled travelers than ever before.
A clearinghouse of official Canadian federal government information on disability issues, including those related to travel and transportation, is available from Persons with Disabilities Online at www.pwd-online.gc.ca. The Canadian Paraplegic Association (tel. 613/723-1913; www.canparaplegic.org) can offer advice for mobility-challenged travelers, as well as address issues for those with spinal-cord injuries or with other physical disabilities. From the national website, you can click to find provincial organizations.
Organizations that offer a vast range of resources and assistance to disabled travelers include MossRehab (tel. 800/225-5667; www.mossresourcenet.org); the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB; tel. 800/232-5463; www.afb.org); and SATH (Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality; tel. 212/447-7284; www.sath.org).
Access-Able Travel Source (www.access-able.com) offers a comprehensive database on travel agents from around the world with experience in accessible travel; destination-specific access information; and links to such resources as service animals, equipment rentals, and access guides.
Many travel agencies offer customized tours and itineraries for travelers with disabilities. Among them are Flying Wheels Travel (tel. 507/451-5005; www.flyingwheelstravel.com) and Accessible Journeys (tel. 800/846-4537 or 610/521-0339; www.disabilitytravel.com).
Flying with Disability (www.flying-with-disability.org) is a comprehensive information source on airplane travel. Avis (tel. 888/879-4273; www.avis.com) has an "Avis Access" program that offers services for customers with special travel needs. These include specially outfitted vehicles with swivel seats, spinner knobs, and hand controls; mobility scooter rentals; and accessible bus service. Be sure to reserve well in advance.
Also check out the quarterly online magazine Emerging Horizons (www.emerginghorizons.com), available by subscription (US$17 per year; US$22 international).
The "Accessible Travel" link at Mobility-Advisor.com (www.mobility-advisor.com) offers a variety of travel resources to disabled persons.
British travelers should visit the website www.tourismforall.org.uk to access a wide range of travel information and resources for disabled and elderly people.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.