Rollifahrerin in Menschenmenge

People with disability

The legend of a niche subject

 

Because of nescience, people tempt themselves quickly into stereotype thinking, see people with disability in a passive victim role and don’t believe in the capability, autonomy and joy of life of them. The reality is different!


What would happen if you suddenly would have a disability...?

Aside from diverse adverse circumstances in daily life, everything would stay the same. Because the core remains the same. Physical deficits don’t say anything about the attitude of a person. A handicap is no reason for moping – or would you permanently stay at home because of this?


People with disability have got the same interests, expectations and desires as all others. Thus they also like to go out, travel and much else. Unfortunately structural and mental barriers in the environment hinder them to realise this easily.


The above mentioned stereotype thinking is also very common in tourism. Accordingly the majority of service providers don’t realise and treat people with disability as consumers with ordinary demands yet, who want to relax, enjoy nature and much more at their holiday destination and are willing to spend money for that.
Instead of this they define the guest only by his possible impairments and add them a negative special status.

 

Demand:
People with disabilities don’t expect any social motivated offers, but they will be taken seriously as customers with additional needs.

 

Reality:

As person with handicap you are a traveller in a parallel universe!

 

  • You know what kind of trip you want to go on and need accessible accommodations, means of transportation and infrastructure.
  • The established tour operators are not prepared for this. Mostly they refer to specialised providers for barrier-free holidays. Their number and portfolio is manageable and mostly noticeable more expensive as the common mainstream offers.
  • You are pushed to the supposed niche, because people with disability are „demanding“ guests and only specialists know what is well for them.
  • Who want’s to realise his travel selection and booking via the common channels will not find the necessary information about accessibility.
  • Actually available information concerning accessibility is mostly unreliable.
  • Travel planning and handling (customer journey) is affected by an „on demand structure“.
  • Stress and frustration are inevitable.
  • Spontaneity and booking of last minute deals is impossible.

 

All of this is very uncomfortable, time-consuming and does not correspond to today’s consumption habits!

Approximate every third knows a person with disability in his personal environment. But the fewest have an exact idea
about their living circumstances
and their personality.

„The biggest barrier is the barrier of Information“.


Christian Schmidt, Director of Tourism Agency Schleswig-Holstein to the subject "Development of accessible travel services"

 

 

"There is a severe lack of quality information about disabled access in the UK [...] despite all of the legislation supporting accessibility, disabled people are effectively excluded from many mainstream venues and activities, for fear of being faced with inadequate facilities."

 

Prof. Stephen Hawking - Euan's Guide 2013

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