Everyone loves a vacation. Whether relaxing on the water with warm summer breezes or going on an adventure in a new city, traveling can build confidence and strengthen independence. It can also be great fun too!
No one knows this better than Mary Peterson, an accessible travel consultant with Able to Travel. A full-service, accredited travel agency, Able to Travel offers wheelchair users and individuals with limited mobility access to travel agents who are well versed in available accommodations around the world.
“I work with my clients to build a trip around their needs and coordinate all of the logistics,” said Mary. “People might at first be concerned with how a disability will affect their travel options, but I assist them in finding the right resources and maintaining independence.”
At the Living Well With A Disability Conference & Expo this August, Mary will share tips on finding accessible ground transportation, as well as the best ways to work with airport staff and security to reach your destination via air travel. She will also share insights regarding one of the most accessible and enjoyable modes of transportation – aboard a cruise ship!
“Cruising allows travelers to stay on one ship, but see many different destinations,” said Mary. “Many ships are now specifically designed for accessibility and provide a less-daunting option for first-time travelers.”
One of her most memorable clients was a family in which the husband had multiple sclerosis. He and his wife wanted to take their two daughters to the Galapagos Islands for graduation, but they were a bit nervous given the father’s disability. Mary worked very closely with the family to arrange all of the logistics, and they had a wonderful trip with memories to last a lifetime.
“When they got back, they said ‘wow, that was fantastic,’ and they want to travel to South Africa next,” she said.
From Mary’s perspective, providing this knowledge is power, and she looks forward to helping Conference attendees learn about all of the options that are available for their travel needs.
“To me, Living Well With A Disability means feeling good about yourself and having a positive attitude,” said Mary. “Traveling allows people with disabilities to rediscover their independence and encourages an ‘I can’ attitude.”
To learn more about Able to Travel, visit www.abletotravel.org. Learn more about the Living Well With A Disability Conference & Expo by visiting www.livingwellwithadisabilityexpo.org, or connect with us on Facebook.