It’s not always easy for wheelchair users to get around, especially in built up areas. From the negative attitudes of other passengers to stubborn buggy users in the designated wheelchair area, taking public transport has never been as simple as it should be. So what other options do you have?
By Dave Jones
Have you considered buying a wheelchair accessible vehicle? Wheelchair accessible vehicles – also known as WAVs – are designed so that the user can get in and out of the vehicle without leaving their wheelchair, which makes it quicker, easier and in many cases safer to get around.
While non-accessible vehicles may be suitable for those in folding wheelchairs, they are not an option for most powered or rigid wheelchair users – especially those who require the extra support that high-backed wheelchairs provide. The ability to properly secure the wheelchair, as well as the comfort of the user, is a very important element of WAVs.
Once you have your WAV, combining it with a Blue Badge will immediately make day-to-day life, socialising and leisure time far easier. With transport on your own terms and more flexible access to parking, you have more time to do things you need to do. Grocery shopping, for example, becomes a much quicker task, as does visiting relatives or trips to the hospital. With your Blue Badge allowing you to park in any on-street parking and on yellow lines for a limited time, you have far greater freedom. And with more and more locations nationwide becoming wheelchair accessible, the world is your oyster.
You also have a far wider variety of holiday options when you have access to a WAV. There are an extensive range of wheelchair accessible holiday options in the UK that are far easier to reach with your own private vehicle, from cottages to hotels to wheelchair-accessible walking routes.
If you are thinking of buying a WAV, you should keep in mind the fact that while buying one that is right for you is potentially life-changing, buying one in a hurry could lead to a WAV that is claustrophobic, uncomfortable or even unsafe. Although obviously being happy with the look, sound and fuel consumption of a car is important, the thing you need to be most concerned with when buying a WAV is your own personal comfort. Don’t settle for a vehicle you don’t feel right in, even if it is the most affordable or fuel efficient.
Wheelchair accessible vehicles can make your life far easier. Take the time to choose the right one and it will change your life forever.
About the author
Dave Jones is the Director of Mobility Nationwide, a family-run business who are dedicated to helping people find the right wheelchair accessible vehicle for their lifestyle. In addition to Dave’s 30 years of automotive experience, Mobility Nationwide have been industry leading specialists for over 12 years, supplying wheelchair accessible vehicles throughout the UK.