Accessible travel: mobile homes for people with disabilities
Anyone who travels would like to be able to enjoy the highest possible degree of freedom and flexibility – this, of course, also applies to people with disabilities. With the right equipment, people with disabilities can travel more independently and enjoy the real advantages of access camping holidays: the closeness to nature, the freedom to choose where to go and the relaxed atmosphere on the campsite.
What are the requirements for barrier-free camping?
To make a barrier-free holiday possible for people with limited mobility, several prerequisites must be met:
The means of transport to the destination must be accessible to people with disabilities.
Accommodation at the destination must be barrier-free.
Leisure activities can be accessible designs: e.g. access to beaches, wheelchair-accessible hiking trails.
In terms of camping holidays, this means that both the mobile home and the campsite should have no barriers. Travelling to the campsite should be as comfortable as possible and wheelchair users should be able to explore the campsite grounds without difficulties. Those wishing to explore a little should find out whether the local facilities are barrier-free and whether any local excursions are accessible for wheelchair users.
What equipment does a wheelchair-accessible motorhome need?
A specially adapted motorhome allows people with physical impairments to travel without any problems. For campers who are dependent on a wheelchair, there are generally two options:
Convert a motorhome to be barrier-free: The biggest advantage is that the motorhome can be adapted to the needs of individuals and no compromises must be made in terms of equipment.
Renting a motorhome that is accessible to the disabled: This option is particularly worthwhile for holidaymakers with an impairment who first want to try out whether they will enjoy an accessible holiday in a motorhome. In addition, it is much cheaper to rent a motorhome than to buy and convert one.
A wheelchair-accessible mobile home must have the same adaptations as barrier-free flats or houses. The basic requirements are:
Access to the motorhome via ramp or lift
Wider doors (approx. 35 inches)
Wider and accessible interior
Adaptations to the driver's cabin (e.g. driver's seat or steering)
Wheelchair-accessible restroom (e.g. accessible toilet and shower with handrails)
Wheelchair accessible adaptations to the living area (e.g. beds and kitchenette)
Driving in a wheelchair-accessible motorhome
A wheelchair-accessible conversion to the cabin must enable wheelchair users to travel safely - either as a passenger or as the driver. The following vehicle modifications will make driving the motorhome accessible to more people:
Specially adapted accelerator and brake controls
Easy entry to the cabin
Transfer aids from the wheelchair to the driver's seat
A safe wheelchair restraint system is important for wheelchair-user passengers. The wheelchair must be securely fastened to the motorhome’s floor along with seatbelts.
Barrier-free motorhome bathroom
A barrier-free toilet and shower are the most important parts of a wheelchair-accessible motorhome - this means that the bathroom area should be at ground level and easily accessible. Wheelchair users should be able to use the bathroom independently and at any time. The following equipment is essential in a barrier-free bathroom:
Grab rails or bars
Comfortable toilet seat height
A sink that is accessible from underneath or can be pulled out
An accessible shower (with shower wheelchair) or folding shower seat
Mirror at a usable height
Interior fittings in a barrier-free motorhome
A barrier-free motorhome is not only a means of transport but also a living space. Therefore, the motorhome must also have wheelchair-accessible modifications. These include:
Accessible tables/kitchen units
Appliances and switches at a usable height
Benches/tables that can be folded away
Large beds with space to manoeuvre in and out
How can I tell if a campsite is accessible?
An accessible campsite can enable people with limited mobility to enjoy their motorhome holiday to the full. After all, no one wants to spend their stay stuck inside their motorhome. Disability-friendly campsites must meet various requirements to enable all visitors to enjoy their accessible holiday:
Important campsite facilities such as reception, supermarkets or restaurants are designed to be accessible. For example, the entrances should have ramps and doors that are wide enough for a wheelchair.
The paths between the campsite facilities should be accessible by wheelchair and as direct and flat as possible.
Facilities that have steps should also have a ramp or lift.
Parking or pitches are adapted for campers with disabilities.
The campsite should have easily accessible facilities (including within certain facilities, e.g. restaurants). The campsite's sanitary facilities should be adapted for wheelchair access, i.e. they are level, have enough space, and are equipped with grab rails or bars.
Comfort facilities and communal facilities such as swimming pools, saunas, or wellness areas should be accessible.
Find accessible campsites
On many campsite websites, holidaymakers can search directly for accessible campsites. Depending on the website, you can filter out which facilities each campsite has or read about them in the detailed description.
The following websites list accessible campsites in the UK and Europe:
There are also useful apps for searching for accessible campsites, such as:
eurocampings.co.uk (developed by ACSI Holding BV)
Camping.info POIbase pitch & camping guide (developed by pocketnavigation.de GmbH)
The various websites and apps can make the search for an accessible campsite easier, as their filter options provide a first insight into the facilities available for people with disabilities. Ideally, this describes all the features in detail. The ACSI camping app, for example, offers these detailed filter options.
Conclusion: Barrier-free travel in a motorhome
Camping holidays can be enjoyed by many people with disabilities: With the right equipment, a holiday in a motorhome can be a good alternative to holidays by bus, train, or plane. A wheelchair-accessible motorhome and a barrier-free campsite make a carefree holiday possible. The requirements for a barrier-free converted motorhome are the same as those for the living space at home - from low switches and wide doors to a wheelchair-accessible bathroom area. Additional equipment such as fully electronic environmental controls makes camping holidays even safer and more comfortable. At the campsite, it is also important that the site has been designed to be barrier-free, not only in the sanitary area but also in important facilities and communal areas. This guarantees that the camping holiday is also a pleasure for people with limited mobility and does not become an unwanted adventure.
More than 700 stations worldwide
Choose one of the most popular destinations:
- Campervan hire Adelaide
- Campervan hire Amsterdam
- Campervan hire Auckland
- Campervan hire Barcelona
- Campervan hire Berlin
- Campervan hire Bilbao
- Campervan hire Birmingham
- Campervan hire Bordeaux
- Campervan hire Brisbane
- Campervan hire Calgary
- Campervan hire Catania
- Campervan hire Christchurch
- Campervan hire Cologne
- Campervan hire Dublin
- Campervan hire Edinburgh
- Campervan hire Glasgow
- Campervan hire Halifax
- Campervan hire Hamburg
- Campervan hire Lisbon
- Campervan hire Liverpool
- Campervan hire London
- Campervan hire Los Angeles
- Campervan hire Lyon
- Campervan hire Madrid
- Campervan hire Malaga
- Campervan hire Melbourne
- Campervan hire Milan
- Campervan hire Nantes
- Campervan hire Paris
- Campervan hire Perth
- Campervan hire Porto
- Campervan hire Queenstown
- Campervan hire Reykjavik
- Campervan hire Rome
- Campervan hire Sydney
- Campervan hire Zurich