The concept of choosytravellers.com website started some time ago.
Without my realizing that a plan was hatching in my subconscious because of unsatisfactory stays and bookings at different establishments.
I could have accepted the mishaps as every day happenings, and moved on … but then I would not have created the mindset of establishments considering employment of disabled staff.
Initially I got my Travel agent to do my bookings.
Then PA took over and finally I undertook to do it myself. I at last realized that I had unique traveller accommodation needs like WIFI, a desk and good lighting facilities to do my work in the evening.
I started to enjoy the flexibility that I afforded myself on my trips.
Started experimenting with staying on farms as opposed to in town and was pleasantly surprised. My unique traveller accommodation needs then extended to include the facility of “dinner on demand” and was pleasantly introduced to home-cooked meals on offer.
I was even asked once if I had any favourites when suggested “Babotie” and was duly spoilt.
Go and collect fresh eggs for your breakfast
Most of my trips were for business purposes and I grasped the opportunity to enjoy our nature more and more.
Especially birds, and birding became one of my unique traveller accommodation needs wherever possible.
- Some years ago, I bought a copy of Roberts to identify species, their migratory habits and locality where you were most likely to encounter them.
- Half the fun is identifying and adding spotting to your checklist for that particular trip.
- I have extended my enthusiasm on birding to visitors from overseas and they are really taken with the numbers and beauty of our birds
I have managed to visit all of the large SAN Parks game reserves (and Pilansberg) and some others in Africa. We are truly blessed by our game and parks. I must confess to having to get my annual fix by visiting a park and taking some pics to share.
I was doing a lot of training during my trips and often found that I had to change my booking plans at the drop of a hat.
Here I found a huge problem and that was that the Online Travel Agents (OTA’s) I used did not display contact details of establishments on their pages. I wasted valuable time searching and finding the details and often had to take pot luck without WIFI and A Desk!
Employment of disabled staff has many benefits to the establishments and the people with disabilities
Seeing there are are approximately 4 million people with disabilities in South Africa, this makes up about 5,03% of the population. Operating computers and laptops is a skill that disabled people learn from an early age.
It is ability that matters, not the disability
It goes without saying, that I have many skeptics who have reminded me, that Choosytravellers.com has entered into a very competitive market and I am wasting my time. So be it.
- Change for the sake of change and I have no argument… leave accommodation selected for travellers on a price basis as is.
- Change for the sake of satisfaction of the unique traveller accommodation needs and then only consider price …. I have a case and will pursue this argument.
- Not so long ago I had a fall in Madagascar and broke bones, tore ligaments and somehow managed to clip a nerve which has left me with dead feet. I am limited in walking on uneven ground, rocks, and can’t swim in the sea any more because I can’t keep my balance.
- Now when choosing accommodation, I have joined the select group with unique disabled traveller accommodation needs which includes a shower and railing on stairs, swimming pool with steps and rail or ramp with a rail.
- In addition there is an opportunity for employment of disabled staff
Just to expand on my particular circumstances on choosing accommodation via a search, I need preferably
- WIFI and a Desk and Appropriate Lighting
- Swimming Pool with Steps and a Rail
- Ramp or Steps with a rail
- Game Viewing
- Dinner on demand
- Dietary Breakfast and or Dinner
I have tried to search for this combination of these unique disabled traveller accommodation needs or as close as possible to them and regret to say that search engines and other Online Travel agents (OTA’s) can’t help.
Choosytravellers.com gives me the answer immediately of those establishments listed on the choosytravellers.com website.
I will pursue my dream to persuade establishments to provide and become “Certified Disabled Access Accommodation” so there is one in every town in South Africa.
President Cyril Ramaphosa was very enthusiastic about increasing Tourism and labour that goes with it.
Choosytravellers.com, a local organisation, will take up this challenge and work to this end to increase the Universal Accessibility Tourism and employment of disabled citizens.
Create Accessible Establishment Facilities and employment of disabled staff becomes a possibility
Conclusion, Choosytravellers.com, is disrupting the Disabled Tourism and Booking market with its innovative search capabilities to match and satisfy unique disabled needs.
Thank you for taking time to read this newsletter.