Most disabilities shouldn’t stop anyone from travelling. There are more options and resources out there than ever before, but Egypt poses a number of challenges.
Cairo is emblematic of the difficulties that you will face: high curbs, a complete absence of ramps, and broken pavements. The situation is best in the high-traffic tourist areas.
Many hotels in Luxor and Sharm El-Sheikh, for example, now offer a few wheelchair-accessible rooms, and an increasing number of dive centres are equipped to deal with less-mobile customers.
Organizations that offer a vast range of resources and assistance to disabled travellers include MossRehab (tel. 800/CALL-MOSS [225-5667]; www.mossresourcenet.org); the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) (tel. 800/232-5463; www.afb.org); and SATH (Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality; tel. 212/447-7284; www.sath.org).
AirAmbulanceCard.com is now partnered with SATH and allows you to preselect top-notch hospitals in case of an emergency.
Access-Able Travel Source (tel. 303/232-2979; www.access-able.com) offers a comprehensive database on travel agents from around the world with experience in accessible travel; destination-specific access information; and links to such resources as service animals, equipment rentals, and access guides.
Flying with Disability (www.flying-with-disability.org) is a comprehensive information source on aeroplane travel.
Avis Rent a Car (tel. 888/879-4273) has an Avis Access program that offers services for customers with special travel needs.
These include specially outfitted vehicles with swivel seats, spinner knobs, and hand controls; mobility scooter rentals; and accessible bus service. Be sure to reserve well in advance.
Also check out the quarterly magazine Emerging Horizons (www.emerginghorizons.com), available by subscription ($16.95/year U.S.; $21.95/year outside the U.S).
The “Accessible Travel” link at Mobility-Advisor.com (www.mobility-advisor.com) offers a variety of travel resources to disabled persons.
British travelers should contact Holiday Care (tel. 0845-124-9971 U.K. only; www.holidaycare.org.uk) to access a wide range of travel information and resources for disabled and elderly people.