Here is a round-up of the latest news in the world of accessible travel and disability — stories that can inspire your future travels, inform you of the latest in accessible innovation, and shine a light on the work still needed to create a truly accessible world.


Disabled diver wearing a swimsuit seated on the ground next to her wheelchair.
Photo courtesy Quicksilver Dive.
  • Australian dive company welcomes disabled people to the Great Barrier Reef — Earlier in 2023, the Professional Association of Diving Instructors launched a program recognizing diver centers that adapt to the needs of disabled customers. Quicksilver Dive, located near the Great Barrier Reef in Port Douglas, Australia, is the first PADI Adaptive Service Facility in Queensland and one of only four such facilities in Australia. Through their adaptive programs, wheelchair users and others with disabilities can join accessible dive adventures to the world’s largest reef system. Who’s ready to dive into the deep blue sea?
  • Accessibility improvements included as part of $500M Superdome Renovation — Last year, I attended a college football game in the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans. It was a terrible experience. Accessibility was at best an afterthought, the bathrooms were disgusting and largely inaccessible, and the concourses were packed wall-to-wall with people. I vowed never to return to the Superdome again, but this substantial investment has me rethinking that position.
Wide angle view of Chicago White Sox baseball stadium and field.
Image © redlegsfan21, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
  • Beyonce covers travel costs for disabled fan who missed show due to airline snafu — Two weeks after he had flown Alaska Airlines to Seattle for another concert, wheelchair user Jon Hetherington was told that his wheelchair couldn’t fly — on the same flight, with the same airline, on the same aircraft type — to the Beyonce concert. The airline’s decision not to load his wheelchair on its side meant Jon would miss Beyonce’s performance, but the “BeyHive” sprung into action and the artist covered the expenses of getting him to a different show. Although wheelchair users should use my guide to airplane cargo door heights to pick flights that can best accommodate their power wheelchairs, it’s still frustrating that a major carrier like Alaska is unable to accommodate travelers like Jon Hetherington.
  • High school baseball coach asks for ADA compliant bathrooms in Virginia Beach — A longtime high school baseball coach has sent a letter to school board and city government leaders, asking for ADA compliant bathrooms at the ballfields. The coach, a wheelchair user for many years, told local media that, with games at 4 p.m., “I actually stop eating or drinking at 10 a.m. just so I don’t have to worry about the rest of the day.”
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