Thailand presents one large, ongoing obstacle course for the mobility impaired. With its high kerbs, uneven footpaths and nonstop traffic, Thai cities can be particularly difficult. In Bangkok many streets must be crossed on pedestrian bridges flanked with steep stairways, while buses and boats don’t stop long enough even for the fully abled. Rarely are there any ramps or other access points for wheelchairs.

A number of more expensive top-end hotels make consistent design efforts to provide disabled access to their properties. Other deluxe hotels with high employee-to-guest ratios are better equipped to accommodate the mobility impaired by providing staff help where building design fails. For the rest, you’re pretty much left to your own resources.

Resources

Download Lonely Planet's free Accessible Travel guide from http://lptravel.to/AccessibleTravel. Alternatively, some organisations and publications that offer tips on international travel include the following:

  • Accessible Journeys (www.disabilitytravel.com)
  • Asia Pacific Development Centre on Disability (www.apcdfoundation.org)
  • Mobility International USA (www.miusa.org)
  • Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality (www.sath.org)
  • Wheelchair Holidays @ Thailand (www.wheelchairtours.com)