AR Guide to Accessible Travel in Europe
Travel advice for those who are less-abled
Updated February 2023
We firmly believe that travel should be accessible to everybody. To be able to explore a place, journey somewhere new, feel a sense of adventure, discover new cultures and learn about local history is a very special experience. But for some, travel can be challenging.
We’ve compiled a guide to accessible travel within Europe, giving each country a rating out of five. We’ve updated our criteria for this new edition, though we still consider the accessibility of public buildings and services, transport, street movement, attractions, rural travel, government action and legal provisions.
We’ve put together a five-point criteria to score each country based on its ability to adapt and improve in five key areas.
Read our guide
Updated and simplified for 2023, our second edition guide to Accessible Travel in Europe contains updated country-by-country information. You can find the first edition guide here.
Our five-point criteria
Building upon our previous five-point plan, we’ve combined some areas and adapted others for a simplified criteria. Each country is scored against these criteria based on its ability to adapt, improve and embrace the points below.
1. Legal Provision
Are there legal provisions enshrined in the constitution to promote equality and anti-discrimination? How well-established are these laws?
2. Government Action
Is local government making reasonable efforts to improve accessibility, opportunities and awareness and promote an open attitude towards less-abled people?
3. Ease of Movement Inside
How easy is movement within public buildings? Are indoor attractions, such as museums, galleries, theatres, theme parks, water parks, and historical and cultural sites, accessible to all?
4. Ease of Movement Outside
Are public spaces, parks and pedestrianised areas easy to access? Are pavements free of bulky street furniture? Is there tactile paving, dropped kerbs and level access? Are there cobbled areas?
5. Getting from A to B
Are all main modes of transport, such as buses, taxis, trains, trams and metro services, boats etc, adapted for ease of use? Are there disabled parking spaces and on-road parking spots?
Laws & Protections
The United Nations, European Union and national governments have introduced many laws, legislation, guidance and charters covering the rights of people living with disabilities. All 27 member states of the EU have common rules, while the UK, Norway and Switzerland have implemented their own version based on those of the EU.
|Where it applies|
|Universal Declaration of Human Rights|
All UN Member States including: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland
|Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities||All UN member states including: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland|
|Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU||All EU states including: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden|
|European Accessibility Act 2019||All EU states including: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden|
|UK Human Rights Act 1998||Great Britain|
|UK Equality Act 2010||Great Britain|
|Equality & Anti-Discrimination Act 2017||Norway|
|Disability Discrimination Act 2002/2017||Switzerland|
Charities & Organisations
Disability Rights UK disabilityrightsuk.org
|A UK-based charity set up to create a society where disabled people have equal power, rights and equality of opportunity.|
|Europe-wide charity fighting for equal rights and full inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities.|
|National charity with the purpose of enhancing the lives of disabled people with transportation solutions and charitable grant programmes.|
|A UK-based charity providing help and support to disabled children and their families.|
|UK National Health Service providing healthcare, information, advice, and other health-related services.|
|A UK-based charity founded by King Charles III that provides help, support and advice to young people with disabilities and those who are vulnerable, living in poverty, struggling with education, employment or other difficult circumstances.|
|Disability equality charity that campaigns for a fairer society and provides practical information and emotional support.|