Travel should be accessible to everyone, including people living with a disability.
However, people with disabilities are more likely to report a greater number of difficulties when travelling; 25% of people with disabilities report challenges when it comes to their travel, compared with only 10% of people without disabilities (according to GOV.UK).
With that being said, we have collected data from Tripadvisor and Yelp to reveal the most disability-friendly travel destinations in Europe for 2024.
Using each capital city in the continent, we have discovered the percentage of accessible restaurants, hotels and things to do. A final average accessibility score was then calculated to reveal the top 10 cities*.
Please note - as defined by the Disability Information Bureau UK, the term accessible is the degree to which a product, device, service, or environment is available to as many people as possible. It is also considered to be the "ability to access".
London, UK - one of the most popular tourist destinations, London has the highest combined average for accessible restaurants, hotels and things to do at 30%, making it Europe's most accessible capital city. 50.5% of restaurants in London are accessible, the highest out of any other capital city in Europe, 9.4% of hotels in London are accessible according to Tripadvisor, and 30% of things to do in the city are accessible, according to Yelp data.
Paris, France, has a combined average accessibility score of 29.6%. The French city scored highly for hotels, with 23.5% of hotels being accessible. 46.1% of restaurants and 19.2% of things to do in Paris are accessible.
In third place is Amsterdam, Netherlands, with a combined average percentage of 25.6. Amsterdam scored the highest for things to do out of all the capital cities, with 39.2% of things to do in Amsterdam being accessible, according to Yelp.
Bern, Switzerland has a combined average accessibility percentage of 23.6, scoring highly for both restaurants and things to do. Oslo, Norway has a combined average score of 21.7%. Oslo has the highest percentage of accessible hotels in Europe, with 24.8% of hotels in the Norwegian capital being accessible.
Other capitals in the top ten include Dublin, Vienna, Reykjavik, Madrid and Rome.
The average number of restaurants that are accessible across Europe as a whole is 22.7%, with only 9.7 hotels being accessible. 17.9% of things to do across Europe are accessible, on average.
Chief Commercial Officer at Iglu Cruise, Dave Mills, said:
“Through our research, we have discovered the capital cities in Europe which are most accommodating to those living with a disability”.
“We can see that whilst many cities across Europe are disability-friendly, there is still a lot of work to be done across the continent to make accessible travel more widely available.
“Cruise is one sector that is paving the way for accessible travel. From accessible cabins and amenities throughout the ship to accessible shore excursions, cruise lines are ensuring that guests with disabilities have all the amenities they require both onboard and ashore.”
We have revealed some of the most accessible cruise lines that accommodate those living with a disability.
Destinations include: Caribbean, Mexico & The Mediterranean
Royal Caribbean was one the first major cruise lines to prioritise accessibility throughout its fleet. Cruise ships such as Anthem of the Seas, Wonder of the Seas and Symphony of the Seas, offer several features that cater to guests with different disabilities.
Accessible staterooms have been designed for guests with mobility issues and other disabilities. These accessible cabins feature larger sleeping, sitting and bathroom areas, allowing for easier manoeuvrability.
Royal Caribbean also offers accessible shore excursions that accommodate wheelchairs and other mobility devices. This includes accessible transport, step-free routes and local independent operators.
See our range of Royal Caribbean cruises here.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Destinations include: the Arctic, Canada & the Norwegian Fjords
Norwegian Cruise Line is another major cruise line that offers extensive accessibility assistance for those with disabilities. With 19 ships in their fleet, they aim to give guests the “freedom of choice to cruise your way”.
Within the cruise line, there is a team of Accessibility Coordinators that will contact guests to discuss accessibility requirements (after they have filled out a guest special needs request form). All Norwegian Cruise Line ships have pool lifts and accessible bathrooms throughout.
Boarding and disembarkation assistance are available throughout the cruise for anyone who may need it. Those with hearing and visual impairments have access to amenities and services such as a visual-tactile alert system in their cabins, pagers to assist with ship announcements and more.
Discover our wide selection of Norwegian Cruise Line getaways here.
Destinations include: the Canary Islands, Greece & the Philippines
Britain's biggest cruise line, P&O Cruises offers cruises that set sail from Southampton and is a popular cruise line with UK guests who are looking for a no-fly option.
There have accessible cabins which feature large doorways and floor space for easier manoeuvrability, wet room bathrooms with grab rails in the shower and toilet, pull-down shower seats and lower toilets and accessible balconies.
Alongside accessible cabins, there are wheelchair-accessible toilets, braille cabin numbers and lift buttons and Infrared hearing support systems in show lounges onboard.
Explore our variety of P&O Cruises getaways here.
Book Your Cruise Getaway with Iglu Cruise Today
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See some of our other relevant blog posts here:
- Service Dogs on Cruise Ships: The Top Cruise Lines that Allow Assistance Dogs Onboard
- Top 10 Global Disability-Friendly Tourist Destinations
- Top Autism Friendly Cruises
* The accessibility average was calculated after adding together the percentage of restaurants, hotels and things to do and dividing the total by three. The accessibility average score is out of 100%.