Travelling home for Christmas must include accessible options Travelling home for Christmas must include accessible options

Travelling home for Christmas must include accessible options

Posted on: by Alison Wilson

It’s the time of year when many of us will travel to visit family and friends as we celebrate the festive season.

And given the super-busy nature of public transport during the holiday season many of us may not be looking forward to making long journeys.

They can often be uncomfortable and stressful, especially at peak times.

But if you turn to social media or the news, all too often there are horror stories about passengers who are disabled experiencing major issues using public transport due to poor service and limited accessibility.

These stories show how travelling on public transport can be even more challenging if you have a disability or impairment, particularly at this time of year.

New inclusive transport strategy

The same goes for accessing transport information and services online, if you want to do things like check a timetable or book tickets on transport websites.

Unfortunately the lack of accessibility of some transport websites is still an issue for customers who have a disability or impairment.

The UK Government has recognised the harsh reality of this situation for people with disabilities and earlier this year it introduced its new inclusive transport strategy, The Inclusive Transport Strategy: achieving equal access for disabled people.

As Nusrat Ghani, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, says in the ministerial forward to the policy document:

“For our ageing population, and the fifth of people who identify as having some sort of disability, access to transport can be far from straightforward.

“That is why this Government is determined to make sure that disabled people have the same access to transport as everyone else, and that they are able to travel easily, confidently and without extra cost.”

Arriva UK Bus and GWR leading the way

While it will naturally take some time to see the positive outcomes of the new government strategy, there are some transport providers who are already going places when it comes to digital accessibility.

For example, leading transport companies Arriva UK Bus and Great Western Railway (GWR) have both added Recite Me’s accessibility and language toolbar to their websites this year.

The toolbar makes their websites more accessible for all customers including people with disabilities and people who don’t speak English as a first language.

Travelling home for Christmas shouldn’t be a huge challenge for people with disabilities.

They have a right to inclusion in everyday activities like travelling and accessing services and information online, and all transport companies must ensure they meet these needs.  

100’s of organisations already use Recite Me to make their websites more accessible for people with disabilities – call 0191 4328092 to find out more or book your free demo now.

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