Wheelchair user Elissa Fischer, 64, suffers from ataxia, a brain condition that affects her speech, coordination and ability to walk. Nonetheless, the retired Floridian and her husband recently spent eight days exploring Iceland, the Nordic island nation known for its rugged landscape and challenging outdoor adventures. Their itinerary included a dip in the country’s famous Blue Lagoon. Fischer couldn’t have made such a trip without the help of Iceland Unlimited, a Reykjavik-based travel company specializing in accessible tours.
Companies like Iceland Unlimited work hard to make travel accessible to people with all types of physical issues, including those that come with age, such as less stamina and balance issues. They organize their own tours to prime destinations, focusing primarily on making travel easy and feasible for their customers by carefully reviewing hotels, restaurants and attractions to ensure truly accessible accommodation; using accessible vans with lifts to eliminate transportation hassles; provide wheelchairs, scooters, walkers and other special medical equipment as needed; securing accessible cabins on cruises, and more.
In addition to their guided tours, some also offer travel agency services, such as booking trips that their clients wish to undertake on their own, always focusing on the particular needs of their clients.
Below is more information about Iceland Unlimited, along with four other accessibility-focused companies.
Easy Access Travel
Debra Kerper, a bilateral amputee, found few options when looking for travel experiences she could do given her disability, so she founded Easy Access Travel in 1995. Since then, the Carrollton-based company , Texas, has arranged a variety of trips both on land and sea. Additionally, as a travel agency, it helps clients plan and book domestic and international trips, Hawaii and New England being at the top of the list for getaways to the United States.
Kerper’s philosophy for serving its special clientele is simple: “Eliminating surprises and informing clients of possible situations remain paramount to successful planning,” she says.
Two of the many ways the company ensures customer satisfaction are through the use of guides in each region experienced in working with travelers with special needs and following itineraries for various excursions specially designed to be easily navigated by wheelchair users. It currently has accessible cabins booked for an Alaskan cruise this summer and a Mediterranean cruise in October, both with Royal Caribbean. Itineraries for 2023 are still in preparation; check the site for updates.