| What The Cruise Lines Have To Say About Access |
The Princess Access program raises the standards of cruise ship access to a new level while keeping in mind the inherent constraints and special considerations of a ship at sea.
Here's what Princess has to say:
"We're proud to have the highest number of wheelchair accessible staterooms in the industry. Doorways wide enough for most chairs, rooms designed with wheelchair movement in mind, and bathrooms featuring roll-in showers and hand-held detachable shower heads are among the list of special accommodations.
Additionally, special wheelchair transportation gangway mechanisms, ramps, and elevators with Braille call buttons as well as audible arrival sounds are available aboard many or all of our ships.
We also have a supply of ADA "all in one kits" including telephone amplifiers, visual smoke detectors, door knocker sensors, text telephones and other aids for guests with hearing impairment.
If there is additional information you require, please write to us or have your travel agent give us a call. We sincerely hope to be of service to you and we look forward to welcoming you aboard. "
| TSA Announces Program To Help Disabled Passengers |
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Security screeners at airports no longer will separate a blind passenger from a guide dog, and then take the harness off the animal. They will ask passengers in wheelchairs if they would like to move to a private area before they search the traveler by hand.
Such procedures have become part of screener training, Transportation Security Administration officials said Tuesday.
"You'll be greeted with respect and dignity," TSA spokeswoman Heather Rosenker said. "What people will notice more than anything is that there is an interest to treat them with the same courtesy as an able-bodied person coming through."
The training program was designed with the help of groups representing people with disabilities and lists guidelines that all screeners must follow.
For example, screeners will talk to blind passengers, helping them to empty their pockets of metal and making sure they reclaim their items at the other end of the X-ray machine. They will keep the guide dog's harness on as the animal goes through the metal detector, then pat down the dog by hand.
Passengers in wheelchairs who can't walk through the detectors will be offered a private area where a screener will search them by hand.
"TSA's goal is to ensure that every passenger with a disability knows what to expect at every airport, every time, everywhere," said Sandra Cammaroto, manager of TSA's screening of persons with disabilities program.
David Stempler, president of the Air Travelers Association, an advocacy group, said such procedures will make it easier for passengers with disabilities to fly.
"At a time when we're trying to encourage people to get back on the airplanes, this should help encourage people with disabilities to fly again," Stempler said.
| Princess For Disabilities |
Princess has placed a high priority on making our ships as accessible as possible for travelers with disabilities. Recognizing the unique aspects of a shipboard environment, Princess is committed to ensuring that a cruise vacation is an enjoyable and comfortable experience for all passengers. Inherently, a cruise is a wonderful vacation choice for travelers with disabilities because it's easier to travel to destinations around the world and visit many different ports without experiencing typical shoreside inconveniences.
As more and more travelers from all walks of life turn to cruising as thier vacation of choice, cruise lines are responding by accomodating all groups including the disabled. Miami based Carnival Cruise Lines, the "most popular cruise line in the world" has taken the lead in removing barriers to challenged individuals allowing them to fully enjoy the cruise experience. As the Carnival fleet expands, more handicapped accessable features are added to each ship. Not all ships have all the features so you should check with Carnival or a travel professional well versed in this area but the list includes:
Accessible elevators with reachable tactile controls and audible signals.
Between 16 and 30 handicapped cabins per ship which are located close to elevators
Accessible staterooms with wide entry doors, accessible closet rods, shelves, safe, telephones and desks; and bathrooms with roll-in showers, grab bars and accessible lavatories.
Carnival also has various services for the deaf including a text phone (TDD) for guests to communicate with the pursers desk, a "door knocker" which flashes a light in the room when someone knocks on the door as well as a "bed shaker" which is ofeten used by deaf guests as a wake-up call
All showrooms, lounges and dining rooms have accessible seating areas.
Accessible public restrooms in addition to your stateroom's bath.
The Nautica Spas® offer accessible gym equipment.
Guests unable to access our onboard spa may request to have a spa representative render services in their cabin.
Laundry service, upon request is available for guests with disabilities.
Specially trained service animals are permitted on board and allowed full access to all passenger areas
Also in addition to priority embarkation, at the conculsion of the cruise handicapped persons are advised where to meet during the ships "Debarkation Talk" and Carnival staff is available to assist as necessary. All this is a natural extension of Carnival's highly effective customer service orientation. Former President, now CEO, of Carnival Corp, Bob Dickinson recently noted in speaking of the companies success "We measure success in only one way. If at the end of the day, if people had a great vacation, then it'sa success"
It's refreshing to see a company that extends that concern to those with disabilities
MORE GOOD NEWS:
The World's Leading Cruise Lines (WLCL) marketing alliance - composed of Carnival, Costa, Cunard, Holland America, Princess, Seabourn and Windstar - and the Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality (SATH) have signed a sponsorship agreement in which SATH will provide marketing expertise in expanding the potential customer base for the WLCL to travelers with disabilities. Additionally, SATH will serve in an advisory role regarding the accessibility features of the vessels among the WLCL's seven brands.
The sponsorship makes the WLCL the largest cruise alliance to sign such an agreement with SATH, which was formed in 1976 as a non-profit educational membership organization whose mission is to raise awareness of the needs of travelers with disabilities among all segments of the tourism industry, as well as serving as a clearinghouse for information for consumers (www.sath.org).
"While the brands of the World's Leading Cruise Lines strive to make their ships accessible and enjoyable for travelers with disabilities, this agreement with SATH will enable WLCL brands to build upon these efforts even further," said Jack Anderson, WLCL executive director.
Commented Roberta Schwartz, CTC, MCC, SATH Director of Education, "Cruising is a favorite vacation option among travelers with disabilities and we are looking forward to working with the WLCL in promoting the alliance's broad diversity of cruise vacation offerings to SATH members. SATH applauds the WLCL for recognizing this market potential and creating this outreach for travelers with disabilities."
According to Schwartz, there are an estimated 54 million Americans with disabilities, making it one of the largest niche markets in leisure travel. "Traveling for people with disabilities can be a life-altering experience. Our goal at SATH is to help these guests in making informed vacation choices, allowing them to enrich their lives and spend quality time with friends and family," she said.
As part of the new agreement, the WLCL will participate in SATH's annual World Congress and Trade Show for Travelers with Disabilities and the Mature, and other trade shows. Cross-promotional opportunities such as consumer awareness seminars and media/publicity efforts will be included, as well.
SATH will also work closely with WLCL in developing a wide range of strategic initiatives that may include comprehensive Web-site information and specialized training for shipboard employees of WLCL member lines.
The World's Leading Cruise Lines marketing alliance was established by Carnival Corporation & plc as a means of communicating a highly diversified, global cruise product that capitalizes on the unique attributes and amenities of its seven distinct member lines, which include: