What the ideal accessible trip is like
Over the past 30 years, travel has been revolutionised thanks to the increase in low-cost options, the internet and unprecedented choice. Still, there’s one demographic group that has yet to fully benefit from this: people with accessibility needs. It is estimated that, worldwide, some two billion people have some kind of special needs due to disability or age. A new study carried out by Amadeus analyses the advantages of personalising services, with the aim of facilitating accessible travel, and explains how it is possible to help create a travel industry that is more accessible for all.
1 With effective communication
According to Voyage of discovery: Working towards inclusive and accessible travel for all, a study by Amadeus, one of the greatest barriers is the lack of available information, together with a lack of specialised customer service.
Ideally, people with accessibility needs should be able to travel with the same ease as everyone else and without any need to ‘declare’ this need in advance. Amadeus identifies effective communication as one of the key elements to the ideal accessible trip. Through various channels (visual, audio and reader-friendly), users can quickly obtain complete information on how their special needs – and any that may arise – will be met.
2 With technology as an ally
Technology is a key aspect in helping to achieve the ideal trip because it provides tools that are more efficient, more dynamic and easier to use. Mobile devices would promote the offer of more personalised services with enhanced internet browsing, and by facilitating access to relevant content.
3 Personalised offer
A trip begins as soon as the travellers first think about it – and doesn’t end until they have returned home. Throughout the process, each person is offered suggestions based on previous travel bookings. This profile information – combined with data from social media on typical behaviour – would allow each part of the itinerary to be predictable for and adaptable to each person.
4 Specialised service
Good customer service is crucial for a perfect experience. At each point in the ideal trip, there would be teams trained on all aspects of accessibility and these would have clear guidelines on how to provide universal service to all customers (with or without disabilities), ensuring that there is no additional cost. Empathy would be an essential quality.
5 Standardised services and content
One of the biggest difficulties faced by travellers is that information is scattered across different sources. The integration and standardisation of this information internationally would simplify the search process. Users would have a single location for information on accessibility, and could directly select a specific area, rather than relying on personal recommendations or on making phone calls for more in-depth explanation.