The month of February has been full of workshops. Our entire team has been travelling to different places. While I was planning to travel with my team, I was constantly bothered by how we would make this travel experience ‘inclusive’ for Krishna, who uses wheelchairs. The questions that frequented my mind constantly were:
“How will they get him on board without a ramp?”
“Will there be an alternative to a ramp?”
“How would he manage if it turned out to be a journey for more than one day?”
In such circumstances, these issues will be a constant worry on every parent’s mind. Imagine the condition of 10 crore people with disabilities in our country. I am not here to crib about the problem of accessibility. I am here to share the experiences that we had during the journey.
Coming back to the point, I was searching for ‘budget hotels’ in Pune, which have all the facilities, including those to accommodate wheelchairs and accessible rooms. That’s when I came across Ginger Hotels, a leading chain of budget hotels in India, where they confirmed over phone that they had a ‘special’ room which was spacious and also had accessible bathrooms. I was delighted to hear this.
I booked the ‘special’ room for Krishna and his partner Nataraja. The ‘special’ room had a spacious hall and a bathroom big enough to accommodate a wheelchair. For the rest of us, I booked another room.
We were very pleased to see the kind of facilities the hotels had put to make their place accessible. We were much relieved – especially after the careless handling we were subject to, by the airline staff, while deboarding the flight. We arrived one day earlier than scheduled, and although the special room was occupied, we had to wait for only five hours to avail of the services of the room.
The hospitality provided by the hotel staff was commendable. They provided the wheelchair without even being asked for it and without much delay. Krishna was extremely happy after having a look at the facilities. I am sure that the next time we go on a trip with Krishna, we will definitely look up Ginger Hotels before opting for any other hotels.
I therefore request that all hotels be made accessible for all.