Hotels etc. for a fairly ambulant disabled but chronically sick person for a short break — Scope | Disability forum
If we become concerned about you or anyone else while using one of our services, we will act in line with our safeguarding policy and procedures. This may involve sharing this information with relevant authorities to ensure we comply with our policies and legal obligations.

Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.
Please read our updated community house rules and community guidelines.

Hotels etc. for a fairly ambulant disabled but chronically sick person for a short break

Florine Community member Posts: 60 Connected

I'd told the site to save my previous draft of a long post, but it hasn't, so I'll have to start again from scratch.  Hey ho :-(

I'd like to ask the forum for input on trying to find some accommodation for a short break for a person who is technically ambulant disabled, but can't actually walk very far, sit upright unsupported for long or do much of anything else, as she easily gets worn out due to being chronically sick.  She doesn't need a holiday service for the disabled or anything like that, just somewhere she can stay for a few days and have a bit of a rest/change of scenery, but I'm struggling to know where to start in these days when information is scattered over multiple websites.

Mobility: she can walk around indoors okay (assuming that "indoors" isn't too huge, as it might be in a hotel), but would need a wheelchair (and pusher) for distances of perhaps more than 15 metres or so.  She also couldn't manage more than 1 flight of stairs per day. 

Rooms: so realistically we're talking about a ground-floor room (or one up/down only a few steps) or one with lift access for her - and either en-suite or toilet/bathroom close by.  It's going to need to be somewhere she can spend most of the day in if necessary, so preferably not some soulless identikit hotel room.  It doesn't need to be a fully-equipped "disabled" room or anything, as long as we can get the wheelchair (folded) in there somewhere.  (I'll also need a separate room or something - sofabed? - for myself, as our sleeping patterns aren't exactly compatible!)

Transport: we don't have any, so would need to use cabs or get a friend to give us a lift.  The longer she travels, the more likely it is to adversely affect her condition, so we're looking for somewhere local (South London, to be precise).  I'd need public transport to be able to go anywhere. 

Catering: apart from breakfast, this may be tricky, as she's not going to be able to go out and eat in a restaurant, even a hotel one, so we might be reliant on having to order takeaways or something, which a hotel may not be keen on.  Maybe something more like a studio room with a kitchenette would work better, but again, how do you find those?

People: lots of people she doesn't know, except in very small doses, could be very exhausting for her.

She'd like somewhere, maybe a quiet guesthouse or B&B, with a garden she could sit in.  A retreat centre (without associated expensive courses) has been suggested, but again I'm struggling to find something.  Self-catering would obviously be better for many reasons, but we live in a cramped flat as it is, and most of the self-catering locally seems to be in blocks of flats, so is far from ideal.

The problem, I think, is how to find the sort of places which might suit.  It's so difficult when most websites seem to assume that customers come in standard packages and don't have specific specialised needs, so I'm finding filtering on appropriate venues very difficult.  I don't think she fits any particular "disabled" profile for which venues and rooms might be designed, either.  I'm surprised at how many accommodation websites don't even allow you to filter for e.g. ground-floor rooms, let alone anything more complex.  Ironically, I think it might have been easier pre-internet, when virtually everything available accommodation-wise would have been listed in a publication from the local tourist board or whatever, and lifts, ground-floor rooms and the like would have been specifically mentioned!

It's incredibly late now, and I'm sure I haven't posted everything I need to tell you, but I'll post now and hopefully I can add extra information later as it occurs to me.  If anyone has any recommendations/suggestions about where to look for the sort of information which might be useful, or anything else I might need to take into consideration, please do post.  Thank you.



  • janer1967
    janer1967 Community member Posts: 21,964 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi there 

    Have you tried specific disabled holiday websites as they are more filtered to your needs 

    Disabled holidays is one I don't know others buf if you put that in as a search you will find others 
  • Richard_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 3,559 Scope online community team
    I would suggest Premier Inns. Accessible rooms are great.
    Specialist Information Officer and Cerebral Palsy Programme Lead

    'Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.

    Want to tell us about your experience in the community? Talk to our chatbot and let us know. 
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 15,465 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Florine - from personal experience I can recommend  as they provide details of accessibility about their properties. I have some mobility issues, so my son has found properties that are on the flat, or with one or two steps leading in.

  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Scope Campaigns Posts: 12,465 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Florine :) Just to add to the above, you might also like to check-out Scope's information and advice pages on holidays if you haven't already. 
    National Campaigns Officer, she/her

    Join our call for an equal future.
  • Florine
    Florine Community member Posts: 60 Connected

    Thank you, everyone, for your comments - they were very helpful. I'll just summarise:

    I did have a look at the Disabledholidays website, which was fairly useful despite the fact that I wasn't really looking for a holiday as such.

    I've looked at Premier Inns, and they indeed look good.  Unfortunately, the hotel I was after doesn't have a lift, and there's no way of specifying ground-floor rooms, which is unhelpful. was indeed very helpful - and I found one possible venue which is worth considering, although you really need your own transport.  Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of cottages in the London suburbs :(

    And thanks, Tori, for the reference to the Scope pages, which I hadn't thought about.  Most of the advice seemed to relate to holidays abroad, though.

  • rubin16
    rubin16 Community member Posts: 278 Pioneering

    I just wanted to add but most of the times special requests have to be made before booking. My nan had to book down London once and needed a ground floor and she spoke to the booking agent who was accomodating. So I think you have to research a hotel you might think is suitable and then phone the hotel/booking agent and personally request a ground floor room and ask for availability.

    Most arn't advertised on websites as people with book them without having any needs, so most of the time you have to personally ask.

    Hope this helps and you find somewhere suitable.
  • Florine
    Florine Community member Posts: 60 Connected
    Well, we did find somewhere - a small family-run hotel fairly locally which ticked enough of the boxes to be do-able, although it wouldn't be useful for many disabled people, I think.  Managed to get a ground-floor room close to the breakfast area, so that worked well enough for a few days.
  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Scope Campaigns Posts: 12,465 Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks for the update @Florine :) I'm glad you managed to get away. Did you have a good time? 
    National Campaigns Officer, she/her

    Join our call for an equal future.
  • Florine
    Florine Community member Posts: 60 Connected
    Is there a sort of Tripadvisor equivalent for people with disabilities?  I think I could usefully make a contribution based on the hotel we've just stayed in.
  • Alex_Scope
    Alex_Scope Posts: 7,562 Scope online community team
    There's Euan's Guide @Florine perhaps you could leave a review there? :) 

    Was it a good, bad or mixed stay at the hotel?
    Online Community Coordinator

    Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.

    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
  • Florine
    Florine Community member Posts: 60 Connected
    Distinctly mixed :smile:


Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.