If you’ve always wanted to take a cruise, but thought you couldn’t because you use a wheelchair, then pick up a copy of Sylvia Longmire’s new book Everything You Need to Know about Wheelchair Accessible Cruising and get ready for that bon voyage party. Not only does this well-researched resource give you the nuts and bolts of accessible cruise travel, but it also includes information on what each cruise line offers in terms of service and ambiance as well as their demographics. Longmire also points out the most accessible ships, includes helpful information for choosing an itinerary, and even offers her own personal access reviews on a number of itineraries that she has sailed.
Probably the most useful part of the book is her access assessment of each cruise region around the globe, with accessible shore excursion providers included. Round it off with tips on renting mobility equipment, travel insurance and things most people don’t even think of – like “Don’t ever make final payment or book your flights until you find out if you will be able to get off the ship at all the ports” – and you have a comprehensive resource for accessible cruising. And then there’s the appendix, which lists the tender ports and cruise line contacts and includes a section on Florida port access.
In short, it’s the kind of book I would write if I was going to do another accessible cruise book – which I’m not.
But it goes beyond that. There are three more reasons to put this travel guide on your must-read list.
- Sylvia can write.
Anyone can self-publish a book today, but self-publishing a good book is another thing. Sylvia manages to do the latter because she can write.
- Sylvia can look outside her own disability.
I’ve been covering accessible travel for almost 25 years, and I’ve only found a handful of people who can do this. And it’s essential if you want to give accurate and useful access information to your readers. Many writers assume that if they can access something, then everyone else can, and that’s not necessarily true.
- Sylvia actually visited the places (and ships) that she covered.
This is probably the most important reason. You have no idea how many accessible travel pieces I read, where it’s blatantly obvious that the writer has never set foot in the destination. Looking it up on the internet or interviewing someone who has been there is not enough – you have to actually visit the sites if you cover accessible travel.
Everything You Need to Know about Wheelchair Accessible Cruising is a handy, essential and informative resource. Don’t leave home without it!