The impact of the pandemic on an accessible travel business

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The pandemic has affected everyone differently, but people with disabilities have been hit the hardest, with many at high risk for complications or death from COVID-19 and therefore had to experience the longest periods of social isolation and sometimes reduce on certain health necessities for fear of catching the virus.

About 61 million Americans live with some type of disability, and according to The Open House organization, 27 million of them generated $ 58.7 billion in trips in 2018 and 2019, demonstrating that they play a vital role in the economy of the travel industry, although many are still under-represented and underserved, or afraid to travel.

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The World Travel and Tourism Council released new guidelines in April to help travel and tourism businesses become more accessible and inclusive for people with disabilities, which include training staff on disability awareness and l ” inclusion of information and accessibility features on websites and booking engines.

However, there is a travel agency that has made people with disabilities the center of their efforts.

Roll the world makes travel accessible across the world, from popular adventure travel destinations like Machu Picchu to beautiful cities in Europe. The website offers hotel recommendations, tours, and multi-day experiences, which you can customize to suit your accessibility needs.

The travel agency recently updated its website to offer a better experience and more content. Customers can complete an accessibility needs profile to receive personalized recommendations, making it easy for them to find what they need.

“When the pandemic started, we had to reimburse all the bookings we had, which is not only difficult from a business point of view but also personally: our travelers had to postpone trips they were so passionate about. It was heartbreaking for us and for them, ”said Camilo Navarro, Co-Founder and COO of Wheel the World. “We adapted quite quickly: we changed our priorities and focused on creating a wider variety of offerings. Each list posted on our website provides very specific accessibility information and safety measures for COVID-19. “

On a specific hotel’s website page, for example, guests can find everything they consider to find a place to stay, from the height of light switches on the wall to whether or not there are bars. support in bathrooms and how wide the doors are. There is also a special area on each accommodation or tour page that lists the health and safety measures taken to provide greater peace of mind.

“We definitely see a more accessible world in the future: that means more hotels and travel providers with better accessibility standards and better education. When you think one way or another, a billion people are disabled today. We’re talking about fifteen percent of the world’s population who are underserved today, “Navarro said.” At the same time, there is a huge opportunity for the travel industry to become more accessible and inclusive to meet those fifteen percent … Driving the world, we are working hard to help make travel more inclusive in the future.

Please check Wheel the World, the newly redesigned website or follow Wheel the World on Instagram Where Twitter @WheeltheWorld, on Facebook Or on Youtube.



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