Been There Done That — or Not?

candy2Believe it or not accessible travel is becoming a very popular topic on the internet these days. That’s both good and bad news. The good news of course is that there’s more information out there. The bad news is, that a good chunk of that informaton is inaccurate.

And unfortunately the latter is happening all to often these days. It stems from a combination of lazy writers, and website owners who want down-and-dirty accessible travel articles, but who aren’t willing to fork over the bucks it takes to do the real research. And in the end it’s the consumer who really loses.

With that in mind, here are a few tips to help you separate the wheat from the chaff as far as accessible travel information is concerned.

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Don’t Get Left at the Gate!

Learn the law, so you don’t get left at the gate!

Sometimes knowing the finer points of the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) can make the difference between having a trouble-free flight, and literally being left at the gate. Such was the case for Jerremy Lorch, a wheelchair-user who was recently denied boarding on an Air Canada flight to Toronto from the Greater Rochester International Airport. Continue reading

Five Survival Strategies for Visiting Zion on Holiday Weekends

A two-hour wait for the Zion Canyon shuttle bus on Labor Day weekend

Summer weekends mark peak season in Zion National Park, but Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day holiday weekends bring even more crowds into this Southwestern Utah national park. Although nothing kills the natural experience like standing in a shuttle bus line for two hours, there are ways to make the most of your visit if you absolutely must come on a holiday weekend. Continue reading

Why You Should Bother to File an ADA Complaint

I get a lot of feedback from my readers, and a good chunk of it pertains to what I call “access shortfalls”. In most cases the incident usually involves a hotel or other travel related business that failed to provide appropriate access. And although the degree of severity varies from case to case, my advice is usually the same; “File a complaint with the Depart of Justice (DOJ) for a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.”

Unfortunately that sage advice is usually met with a deafening silence. Continue reading

Downy Wrinkle Releaser Really Works!

My very wrinkled test t-shirt.

I have to admit that I was more than a little skeptical when a PR person contacted me about Downy Wrinkle Releaser. Granted it comes in a nice three-ounce size, so it’s easy to pack along on trips, but does it really work? I remember some of the wrinkle releasers from the 70s, which just kind of wet your clothes and didn’t do much for the wrinkles. They  ranked right up there with waterless shampoo, as far as product efficiency goes.

But I digress. Continue reading

Privacy, Access Laws and Common Sense

Everywhere you turn these days there’s talk of privacy. In fact we’re literally being bombarded with privacy notices. Every time you visit a new doctor, dentist or other medical provider you’re asked to sign a privacy policy and you get a copy to take along with you. In fact I recently found a purse I hadn’t used since I broke my foot several years ago, and it was crammed full of privacy policies — from the orthopedist, the lab, the hospital and even the medical equipment supplier.

In the long run, I know it’s good that my medical history is protected by these privacy laws, but sometimes it seems that the paperwork is a bit much. Still, I know it’s necessary. And everyone that goes into a new doctor’s office expects to come out with at least one copy of their privacy policy these days. Continue reading

What Does the C-Word Really Mean?

No not THAT C-word — get your mind out of the gutter! I’m talking about an entirely different C-word –Certified. The whole subject came up last week when I got an advertisement from a Certified Dating Relationship Consultant. Let’s forget the fact that I’m happily married, but I thought to myself, “What kind of malarkey is this?”

And my Facebook friends pretty much had the same take on it, and one particularly astute gal even asked the million dollar question “Certified by who?” Continue reading

Why Do Travel Agents “Push” Travel Insurance?

As I was going through my mailbox and answering “Ask the Expert” questions, I stumbled across one that really stood out. Now granted I’ve answered just about every accessible travel question you can imagine– and a few you can’t — however this one really didn’t ask for advice, but instead solicited my opinion about a travel agent that “pushed travel insurance”. It wasn’t like I could do anything to solve the problem at hand, but I thought if I explained the rationale behind the travel agent’s actions, then perhaps the person who wrote to me would have a better understanding of it all.

And although it really didn’t make the “Ask the Expert” cut, it seemed incredibly blog-worthy. So if you’ve ever experienced the hard-sell on travel insurance from your travel agent, here are some of the reasons behind it all. Continue reading