Developing accessible destinations

Better access to attractions. Better access to website information. Better access to customers. Making a destination more accessible will naturally improve visitor satisfaction, encourage repeat bookings and boost positive word-of-mouth.

There are plenty of ways a destination can better handle the support needs of its visitors. Whether it’s providing ramps for pushchairs and wheelchairs, enabling assistance dogs to stay with their owners, or providing help for people with learning difficulties and other conditions.

Destination Managers also have an important role to play in making visitor destinations accessible to all. Information is key, with research showing 83% of people who look for access information when planning a trip will use destination websites. But only 39% find this information easily. The key is making access information easily accessible, which is why we've produced 'Winning more visitors' (PDF, 4MB), a guide to providing access information on destination websites.

A destination access audit, like the one carried out by VisitBrighton, can provide insight into the experiences of disabled visitors. Older people, families with buggies and visitors with luggage will also benefit. The Accentuate guides Access all areas: A guide to destination access audits (PDF, 752KB) and Involving Disabled People in Access Audits (PDF, 536KB) provide detailed guidance on how to undertake a destination access audit.

Our image library also offers suitable imagery for communicating accessibility information.

Destinations for allAn amputee and a friend walking on the Dorset coast

Destinations for all (PDF, 5MB) is a new and invaluable guide for destination managers in England. Divided into four main sections, the guide helps the busy destination manager create a destination that meets the needs of older and disabled visitors. It busts common myths, uncovers best practice and puts forward both quick wins and longer term actions.

Winning more visitors

Along with a wider accessibility strategy, good access information can make a destination more competitive. It can also help local businesses, and the destination as a whole, maximise market opportunities and improve the quality of every visitor's experience. 

Many potential visitors could be just a click away. But without good, easy-to-find access information, they can easily click somewhere else.

Winning More Visitors (PDF, 4MB) provides useful guidance on providing accessibility information on destination websites.

Destination access audit guide

Access All Areas (PDF, 752KB) is a comprehensive guide to undertaking a destination access audit to improve accessibility for visitors. It's aimed at local authorities and covers the key stages of the process. Including planning, procurement, carrying out the audit and producing an audit report and evaluation. 

A man in a suit pushing a man in a wheelchair up a ramp into a taxiInvolving disabled people in access audits

Giving a say to the people most affected by accessibility issues is key to improving their experience. As well as the destination itself and the local visitor economy. The Involving Disabled People in Access Audits guide (PDF, 536KB) by Accentuate focuses on how to involve disabled people in the access auditing process.

Accessibility information for tourism businesses

Visit our Providing Access for All section which provides lots of useful tips and advice to help tourism businesses become more accessible.