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Travel Talk

Museum Accessibility

June 3, 2020 at

More than just a place where art objects are placed behind glass, many modern museums are now catering to more than just sight. Beyond audio description and braille labels, more and more museums are offering innovative approaches such as tactile exhibitions, 3D printing, virtual reality "feeling" gloves and multisensory displays. This month we'll share tips on how to get the most out of your museum experience.
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Past Discussions

Train Travel Tips

May 6, 2020

Trains can be a low-cost method of traveling both far and near. Ted Tahquechi, a blind travel blogger from Blind Travels, has written extensively on his Amtrak experiences with his guide dog. He shared his experiences and offered practical tips for successful train travel.

Group tours can be a great way to travel. Sue Bramhall of Mind's Eye Travel Agency joined us to share tips on using travel agencies that specialize in group tours for the visually impaired. We explored the pros and cons of using such agencies, and things to consider when joining a group tour.

Bus Travel Basics

March 4, 2020

Is this seat taken? Riding the bus is still one of the most popular, low-cost, and convenient ways to get around town. We talked ticketing, shared about shuttles, and compared commutes.

Cruises have become an increasingly popular and accessible vacation choice. This month we shared resources for taking a cruise. We explored picking the right cruise, accommodations to ask for, and tips for bringing a dog guide.

Reliable transportation is an important part of staying active. Understanding your options helps pave the way to continued independence after vision loss. We asked questions and shared our experiences on how to use one of these options, paratransit services.


This month we strolled down the Champs-Élysées with Hadley's honorary Parisian, Deborah Good, who just returned from her tenth trip to Paris. Our virtual tour included the Arc de Triomphe, the Louis Braille Museum, the Tactile Gallery in the Louvre, and more.

This month we took a virtual tour of Paris with Hadley's Debbie Good! Check out the resources and information that was shared during the call.

Accessibility Resources:

Paris Sites and Culture:

Air Travel Tips

October 8, 2019

We picked up where we left off last time and shared tips on boarding and seating, international travel and customs, and bringing aboard a guide dog or cane. We also reviewed passengers' rights when traveling.

Resources for traveling through U.S. airports:

Helpful articles, books and blogs:

Navigating Airports

September 25, 2019

Airports are infamous for their hustle and bustle, but that doesn't have to stop you from flying. This month we walked through the first steps of how to start and end your air travel with less stress.

TSA Resources:

  • TSA Website
  • TSA Cares: (855) 787-2227
  • TSA Passenger Support Specialist (PSS): Specially trained TSA staff who can help you through the security checkpoint. To schedule, call TSA Cares 72 hours prior to your flight. You can also ask for a PSS when you get to the security area.
  • The Disability and Medical Conditions section of the TSA website has a lot of information about screening, packing, and more.
  • You can print your own TSA Notification Card (accessible PDF) to tell the officers about any equipment or items during screening.

Airline Resources:

  • Aviation Consumer Disability Hotline: call (800) 778-4838 for complaints
  • Each airline has a Complaint Resolution Officer (CRO) available around the clock if only by phone to discuss complaints as they are happening. Ask to speak to the CRO. You can also write a letter to the airline after the fact. Make complaints within 45 days of the incident.
  • Flying with Disability website
  • for descriptions and overviews of airports.

Apps and Gadgets:

Traveling Tips:

Planning Your Next Trip

August 28, 2019

Thorough planning increases the joy of travel. This month we explored travel and booking websites and we shared tips for planning your next travel adventure.

Resources mentioned:

  • "Behind the Map: Starting over in a new city" from the Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired. This article details how to obtain a tactile map.
  • Traveleyes, based in the UK, offers travel groups for blind and sighted travelers.
  • Mind's Eye Travel, based in the US, creates tours for people who are blind or visually impaired.
  • Dimensions in Travel is the official travel agency for Guide Dogs for the Blind. They specialize in guide dog cruises.
  • Henshaws, based in the UK, offers helpful tips for people traveling with vision loss.
  • The Blind Guide offers tips and resources for traveling while blind or visually impaired.
  • "Traveling with Blindness" is part of a blog series of ideas for traveling with a disability.
  • Information about Culinary Cruise, which offers the experience of sampling local dishes and tasting local wines. Celebrity chefs will often demonstrate their techniques, share their menus and let you participate in the process.
  • Airbnb is an online marketplace for arranging (or offering) lodging, primarily homestays or tourism experiences. Airbnb does not own any of the real estate listings, nor does it host events.
  • AARP Travel Center or call (800) 675-4318. By paying the AARP membership fee of $16 per year, you can receive discounts of 10% or more at many hotel chains, in addition to many other resources. You can also book flights, hotels, car rentals and cruises through their travel services without paying extra fees. They book through Expedia. Call for AARP Membership at (800) 566-0242.
  • TripAdvisor provides booking information for flights, hotels and cruises. The site also offers helpful reviews of restaurants, tours and attractions.
  • Couchsurfing is a way to find a place to stay when traveling. Create a profile and connect with other couchsurfers.
  • HomeAway is a site to book vacation rentals, including beach houses, cabins, condos and more.
  • is another online marketplace for home sharing.

Accessible Staycations

July 31, 2019

Let's plan a summer staycation! Join us to discover fun ways to enjoy attractions close to home. Learn tips and tricks for accessing museums, parks, beaches, fairs, festivals, farmer's markets, and other local attractions. You don't have to pack a bag for this one!

Simple Guidelines for Accessing Local Activities

  1. Decide on destination.
  2. Research location on the web or talk with others who have been there or call the place.
  3. Look into their accessibility tools. Either locate the Special Services section on their website or call and ask for their Special Services or Educaton Department
  4. Ask for what you need/want: auditory enhancement, tactile enhancement, person guide, free or reduced admission for your person guide.
  5. Remember you don't need to see everything. You can come again.

Resources mentioned:

  • Actiview, is a mobile app that offers accessibility options for enjoying TV and movies.
  • Aira, a visual interpreter service, has parternered with other organizations, including airports, to offer free Aira access to users.

Important Considerations

Content shared during discussions is for general information purposes only. We encourage you to thoroughly consider if any resource or suggestion is a good fit for you. The inclusion of links does not imply a recommendation or endorsement. The opinions expressed by the participants are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Hadley.