Julie Peasgood is a TV presenter, travel expert and Contributing Editor for Cruise International
Q. The idea of going on a cruise holiday really appeals to us, but my wife has problems with mobility. Which cruise lines would you recommend?
A. Most cruise lines take measures to cater for travellers with mobility problems, and cruises can be far more comfortable and less stressful than other modes of travel. There are specially designated cabins for passengers with physical impairments, corridors wide enough for wheelchairs and getting on and off ships is made as easy as possible with ramps and staff on hand for assistance.
The biggest challenge can be the tenders to shore and ensuring excursions are wheelchair-friendly. It’s also worth researching the destinations you’ll be visiting – check if the port is close to town and if there are any obstacles such as cobblestones or flights of steps.
Cruise lines that cater best in terms of physical accessibility are Royal Caribbean, which has some of the most spacious cabins and public areas plus lifts for pools and hot tubs; Celebrity, which shines for its bathrooms, tender policies and accessible, affordable shore excursions; and Regent Seven Seas, which appoints one staff member to each guest with a disability to make sure he or she is taken care of in case of an emergency.
Disney Cruise Line and Holland America are also good at accommodating passengers with mobility needs, and Scenic has accessible cabins on all 13 of its ships that sail the waterways of Europe and Russia.
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