Losing some of your mobility or having a medical condition doesn’t mean you can’t go on holiday ever again, it just means that a holiday will need a little extra planning.
There are many tour operators catering for the retirement travel market, but not all of these can accommodate people with disabilities or limited mobility, so use the services of a specialist travel company or do your research yourself to check that all the facilities you need are provided.
Specialist travel companies include Disability Holidays Guide and Disabled Holiday Directory.
Where can you go?
You could choose to stay within the UK, but if you would prefer to venture further afield, the facilities are there to travel abroad if you wish to, it’s just a matter of choosing the right place and booking ahead for any extra services and facilities you need for the travelling and for at your destination.
One option for seeing the world is to travel on a cruise. Many of the major cruise liners are able to accommodate wheelchair users and you can choose a sailing from Britain or take a flight to join a cruise.
What do you need?
You need your holiday accommodation to have as many of the facilities as possible which you’re used to having in your own home.
For example if you find it difficult to get up stairs unaided, and are used to the assistance of a stairlift, you will need to make sure your accommodation either provides a lift or stairlift or is all on one level.
Many places are fully accessible for wheelchairs and some can provide hoists and shower chairs. Some holiday companies will arrange nursing care for guests, or you could book interconnecting accommodation for a carer if you prefer to travel with a carer you know. If you need an oxygen supply, this can be arranged for some holidays and during your journeys.
Other things to consider
It’s not always easy to get travel insurance if you are older or have medical conditions. Some of the major insurance companies simply won’t insure people over a certain age.
However, there are some insurance providers who specialise in these types of policies and understand the needs of older travellers. It is even possible to get a policy with cover in case you need to cancel your holiday because your carer is unable to travel with you.
Don’t let age or illness make you give up on travelling to those places you always wanted to visit. Plan ahead, arrange some help and make use of expert knowledge, and you might yet get to your dream destinations.