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Getting out: apps that help you plan an accessible day out

A man and a woman sitting on a park bench looking at a phone

Did you know there are apps available to assist you in planning a worry-free accessible day out? We look at a couple of the apps available.

If you need to factor in accessibility, planning a day out can sometimes be really overwhelming. As everyday technology evolves, people with and without disability can all benefit from tools designed to reduce and overcome barriers. It can solve problems and make tasks like planning travel, going out for the day or finding some new accessible places in your local area easier.

We look at a few apps that can help you to find accessible cafes, bars, restaurants and car parks. We also look at more advanced technology like virtually connecting people with vision impairment to volunteers who can be their eyes.

AccessNow

AccessNow is an app that allows users to search, rate, discover and filter accessible places local to you. It can be really useful if you want to know how accessible a café, restaurant or community centre is or browse to see what is nearby and filter based on the accessibility features you need like an alternative entrance or ramp access, automatic door or accessible washroom. You can also read reviews and check whether the location has been rated accessible, partially accessible, or not accessible. Available on Google Play and Apple Store.

Accessible Australia

Accessible Australia is a free online resource from Spinal Life helping you to ‘know before you go’. Similar to AccessNow, the app allows users to leave personal reviews on the accessibility of local venues, plan for holidays and day trips and see what’s accessible in the nearby area. You can also add new places to the app if they aren’t already on the platform.

Be my eyes

Be my eyes is a free service connecting people with a vision impairment via video call to volunteers who can be their eyes and explain or describe things. The app could be used for things like reading the menu at a café or working out a public transport schedule. Available on Google Play and Apple Store.

BlueBays

If you live in South Australia, BlueBays is a free app to help people with disability parking permits find accessible car parking spaces. You can also add new car parks to the platform to help others. It’s available on the Apple Store and Google Play.

Getaboutable

Created by Dr Yasmine Gray who suffers from MS and loves to travel, Getaboutable is a global information sharing platform, similar to Trip Advisor, but designed for people with disability. The platform enables people to explore and share inclusive experiences like visiting a playground or theme park and accessible services and activities like going to a winery, entertainment venue or sports stadium. You can also leave reviews on accessible services based on mobility, hearing, vision and other access needs for each location. By sharing mobility-specific travel information, visitors to the site can help others with the advice they need before their visit.

We hope some of these apps can help make getting out and about a little bit easier for you. You might even like to share some of your own tips for others to benefit from.


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