As I was exploring downtown Philadelphia yesterday, I heard a familiar “quack”, and I looked up to see a Ride the Ducks tour filled with enthusiastic passengers. Since the tour is operated by the same company that operates the San Francisco Ride the Duck Tours, I decided to drop by Duck Central at Chestnut and 6th to check out their accessibility. And I was very pleased with what I found!
Just like the San Francisco ducks, they have vehicles that were purpose-built to be accessible, with a space in back that will accommodate a portable lift. Guests can just wheel on the lift, then wheel off to the accessible space with tie-downs on the vehicle.
Unlike the San Francisco location, the duck folks in Philadelphia require 72-hours advance notice if you need the lift. They are not doing this to make your life more difficult, but it’s just that they don’t have a place nearby where they can store the lift, and they have to transport it from their warehouse. This of course requires some logistical coordination on their part.
The San Francisco ducks have a place near duck central where they can store their lift, so they can be more flexible. The Philadelphia Ride the Ducks manager reports that they would be thrilled to find a local partner who would be open to letting them store the lift on their premises, but so far they’ve had no takers. But who knows what the future will hold.
For now, if you want to book an accessible duck tour in Philadelphia, call (215) 351-9989 and press #2 when prompted. This is the local duck office and they will work to make your accessible tour happen.
It looks like a great tour, and there was certainly no shortage of visitors lined up to quack their way around the City of Brotherly Love. The 80-minute tours cruises through the historic part of the city and around the museum district before it splashes down into the Delaware River. What could be better on a hot summer day?