Where can I get a wheelchair or mobility scooter?

Wheelchairs aren’t just for people who are completely unable to walk. They are also for people with mobility difficulties, who can only walk for short periods or have fluctuating conditions. Broadly, wheelchairs are either self-propelled, assistant-propelled or electric. There are several ways to get a wheelchair.

You can often loan them from shopmobility centres, if you just need to borrow one for going round the shops but call in advance to reserve one.

Contact the Disabled Living Foundation for advice on what to consider when buying and information on suppliers. There are often local mobility centres where you can try out equipment. Think about the costs of maintaining the equipment and where you’ll store it when not in use. 

Where can I park with a disabled badge? 

The Blue Badge scheme helps you park closer to where you're going. Display your badge and parking clock at all times.

Ask your local council about disabled parking spaces.

Am I entitled to a disability car?

Motability enables you to use your high rate mobility component of DLA or enhanced rate mobility of PIP to lease a new car, scooter or powered wheelchair. They can also adapt the car so you can drive it. Motability sometimes pays for driving lessons but you must fulfil certain criteria to qualify - contact Motability for more information.

Can I get a free tax disc?

Some disabled people can get Exemption of Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) for one car.   

Can I get discounts on public transport?

The Disabled Persons Railcard gives you a third off most rail fares. The discount is for two people – so you can save money for a friend or a carer to accompany you. You have to buy the railcard but it can pay for itself after just one journey. You can get free help with luggage as well as getting on and off the train.

Depending on where you live, you might get free or discounted bus travel. Find out more about free bus travel for disabled people in England.

There is no national concessions scheme for coach travel so check for discounts with the coach company you’re using. For example, National Express sells a Disabled Coach Card that gives a third off their standard fares.

If you’re having difficulty accessing leisure activities, ask for a care needs assessment from the Adult Social Care team at your local authority.

Community transport (sometimes called ‘Dial a Ride’ or ‘Ring and ride’) is usually run by local councils and can be a good alternative to taxis or public transport. Find your local community transport provider.

Do businesses have to cater for my needs?

Under the Equality Act 2010, service providers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments for an individual who is at “a substantial disadvantage due to their disability”. They also must also take positive steps to meet the needs of potential disabled customers.

Find leisure facilities in your area.

If a service provider fails to make reasonable adjustments, call the Equality Advisory Support Service free on 0808 800 0082 for specialist advice. 

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