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    cruise ship

    wanting to go on a cruise - any suggestions on good ones and acessibilty or anything i need to know before i plunge!

    #2
    It all depends upon the ship. Some put the accessible cabins over the kitchen - avoid those.
    T3 complete since Sept 2015.

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      #3
      Most of the major ocean cruise lines have accessible cabins. You definitely will need to book one of these, as the regular cabins are too small and have a step up into the tiny bathroom. Those most popular include RCCL, Celebrity, Princess, and HAL. These are considered "mid-level" cruise lines (price) and are generally more accessible than the budget lines such as Carnival and NCL. Fully accessible cabins book up quickly and are few in number...we used to book at least 6-12 months in advance to get these cabins.

      First, I would recommend you decide where you want to go, and then look for a deal. Rarely will you find the best prices on the cruise line websites. Check out VacationsToGo.com, and I have done well with using CruiseComplete.com (once you have decided when and where you want to go) for pricing.

      I would recommend you look for a cruise with very few or no "tender" ports (where you have to get on a smaller boat to go ashore), as most cruise lines will not allow you onto the tender unless you can walk under your own power on/off. Also, having a lot of USA ports increases your chances of finding accessible tours, etc. ashore. Consider Alaska or a New England/Canada fall color cruise. If you are looking at the Caribbean, avoid the late summer and fall due to hurricane season, and many of these ports are tendered.

      I would also recommend checking out the Disabled Cruisers forum on the CruiseCritic.com website.

      (KLD)
      The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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        #4
        I really favor the oasis class ships with Royal C. Bigger is better for wheelchair users and I never have an issue with crowds or elevators. Great entertainment and atmosphere. I really like Allure and Oasis. Someday I want to try the new Harmony and symphony ships. Plus Fort Lauderdale/port Everylades is a real easy port to go in and out of. Lots to do in Fort Lauderdale too.

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          #5
          I just went on a Royal Caribbean cruise from Tampa to Cozumel. I'm not in a wheelchair, but I saw quite a few wheelchair users enjoying themselves on the cruise. Seems like a great accessible vacation. The cruise I went on was like what SCI-Nurse described, no "tender" ports at Key West and Cozumel.
          Co-founder & CTO of MYOLYN - FES Technology for People with Paralysis - Empowering People to Move

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            #6
            I've done a couple of Disney cruises to Bermuda and around the Caribbean and found them quite enjoyable.
            Dots, lines and aeroplanes. my flying adventures.

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              #7
              I just went on Royal Caribbean over Thanksgiving. Most everything was wheelchair accessible. There were a couple places I could not get to easily and a few activities I wasn't allowed to partake in, but overall it was great. I am a low level Para, but it was still exhausting to get around sometimes. They put very thick carpet in some areas, which made it a chore to push. As far as ports, we stopped in Port Canaveral, Nassau, and Coco Cay. For Canaveral and Nassau we were at docks, so it was simple to get off. At Coco Cay it was a tender port (though they are currently building a dock that should be done this summer), but it was still easy to get there. They had roll-on roll-off tenders, so I had no issue getting from the boat to the island. Not all tender ports are like this, but there are a few. A word of caution for Coco Cay itself, the whole island was sand. I did not know that when I got off, so when I got there I knew my regular chair would be useless. I transferred to a beach chair, but that means I cannot push myself, so I ended up being placed under an overhang and just had to sit and watch while my wife and son played on the beach. Feel free to let me know if you have any questions.
              Last edited by ToastGuard; 9 Jan 2019, 9:21 AM.

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                #8
                I just started to look into a cruise . I was wondering if they would let me bring my freedomtrax for the beach ? Freedomtrax is a trax system you pull your chair onto. Also can you bring your own drop arm commode?

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                  #9
                  You can bring your own lift, shower/commode chair, and both power and manual chairs. You can also rent these through approved vendors, but it is very expensive. Hospital beds may also be rented from those same vendors.

                  I doubt they would allow you to use the FreedomTrax aboard ship, and you would have to carry it yourself when embarking and disembarking. Is that something you can do? I believe that this weighs between 75-100 lb. depending on the model/features you have on yours. Crew would not be allowed to carry it for you.

                  (KLD)
                  The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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                    #10
                    no i couldn't carry it. do they have luggage carts? i hope to travel with friends but i don't think they could carry it a long way.

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                      #11
                      No, you would have to bring your own cart. It would also be difficult to use ashore in areas other than on the sand. At most ports you disembark in a fairly industrial area that is all paved, and there are not always curb cuts. Entrances to stores and restaurants often are 1-2 steps up as well. It may be a considerable walk to the area where you can get a cab or other transportation. Ship's tour buses are rarely accessible but are parked closer to the ship usually.

                      (KLD)
                      Last edited by SCI-Nurse; 10 Jan 2019, 4:58 PM.
                      The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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                        #12
                        I believe that the door width on regular cabins is 22 inches. If you use a wheelchair full time you will probably not be able to get into a regular cabin. Some cruise ships have two types of accessible cabins, one for semi ambulatory people and one for full time wheelchair users. The semi ambulatory cabin has no barriers and a wide door, but it is very small and uncomfortable for full time wheelchair users. I once got one of those in Carnival and I had a rough time getting around inside the cabin. Other than that, enjoy your cruise, it is worth it.
                        T6 complete (or so I think), SCI since September 21, 2003

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                          #13
                          anyone got pics from inside an 'accessible' cabin?

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                            #14
                            Originally posted by RJC View Post
                            anyone got pics from inside an 'accessible' cabin?
                            Which cruise line? They can vary significantly by the line and the specific ship or cabin.

                            Here is a video of a Sapphire Princess accessible cabin from 2013 (she does not say which cabin this is though):


                            (KLD)
                            The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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                              #15
                              Here is one from the RCCL Navigator of the Seas (cabin 6304) from 2017:


                              (KLD)
                              The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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