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Published 12 December 2023

A passport to a smooth journey

Ah, the scorching heat of summer beckons for spontaneous adventure! But for our disabled whānau and friends, summer trips might need a bit more thought and planning. So, let’s dive into the top five travel flags, based on what you have told us 😉.

🚙5 - Parking is available: An ample parking space isn't just a convenience; it's a reassurance that your travel is stress-free. 6% of you who joined our competition mentioned parking! Echoing the wise words of Shelley “Never forget your disability parking card!”

If you haven’t already applied for a Total Mobility Card check out the insider’s guide from The D*List (external link) . The Total Mobility Scheme aims to help out by working alongside public transport services, making sure disabled people can easily and safely get around. Check out if you’re eligible on the New Zealand Transport Agency website. (external link)

🚧4 - Spaces designed for safety: Most people will agree with Susan when she says, “what makes or breaks a place across the mōtu is the safety factor!”

Whether you're prone to falls, or serious seizures, or just need that extra support to get somewhere; ample walking spaces, areas with no steep terrain and gated areas are green flags this summer.

💆‍♂️3 - Rest stops galore: About 7% of you pointed out that the availability of multiple stops - be it for food, rest, refuelling, or toileting - speaks volumes about the consideration for all travellers’ comfort.

If you’re stopping accessible toilets, are a must! This leads us to the next couple of green flags.

“For me travelling with a little child always have to ensure we have accessibility to public toilets, making sure you know your surroundings is a must and travelling long distance making sure you have regular toilet stops.” – Gen.

♿ 2 - Accessibility at the forefront: Accessible toilets were mentioned by 40 people. This is high on the list along with roll-on curbs for easy footpath access, and flat surfaces. These are like welcome mats for travellers with disabilities. A scarcity of accessible toilets or inadequate space for mobility might signal a bumpy road ahead.

Knowing you're not miles away from repairers or backup plans in case of a breakdown is like having a safety net beneath your journey.

Now we come to our top-mentioned green flag!

📝1 - Plan, plan, plan! Almost every comment mentioned planning. No one grasps the significance of planning better than someone with a disability.

The absence of a clear plan might lead to unnecessary confusion or difficulty visiting places. Even a quick Google search of your destination before leaving can prevent unforgiving situations. Check out some favourite Accessible Places across Aotearoa.

And a quick bonus green flag 🟩🏳 Choosing your travel buddy wisely.

You wouldn't want to travel with someone who doesn't get your situation, right? So having the right travel companions can truly make a difference! It's all about having someone who understands to ensure a smoother and more enjoyable journey!

In the grand tapestry of travel, these flags serve as markers guiding your path. So, whether you're setting off on a summer roadie or just visiting the beach, these flags can be your trusty companions. After all, the journey is just as important as the destination!