Abstract

Importance: Engaging in travel is linked to quality of life. People with disabilities travel less often than people without disabilities, likely because of the challenges they experience during hotel stays.

Objective: To explore how people with various physical and sensory disabilities experience hotel stays and to identify opportunities for occupational therapy intervention.

Design: Qualitative, phenomenological design with semistructured interviews.

Participants: Eight adults with physical or sensory disabilities who had at least two hotel stays in the past year.

Outcomes and Measures: We used a semistructured interview guide to ask participants about their experiences during hotel stays.

Results: We identified six themes: (1) customer service, (2) reservation process, (3) built environment challenges, (4) traits and skills, (5) use of technology, and (6) safety and emergency preparedness.

Conclusion: The physical, virtual, and social environments of hotels create challenges for people with physical and sensory disabilities. People with such disabilities use skills to improve their hotel experience. Occupational therapy practitioners can affect the hotel experience of people with disabilities through advocacy, consultation with hotels, and direct intervention with clients.

What This Article Adds: This article offers novel information about the impact of the hotel environment on people with physical and sensory disabilities, the ways in which people with such disabilities manage these challenges, and intervention opportunities for occupational therapy practitioners.

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