5 Tips for Choosing a Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle

Different Challenges, Different Mobility Solutions

Whether you’re looking to maintain your current lifestyle or increase your independence, your vehicle solution will depend on a few factors. If you have limited mobility, you might consider an accessible vehicle designed to give you the ability to comfortably travel in your wheelchair.

1

How Important is Convenience to You?

One of the biggest perks of a wheelchair accessible vehicle is the convenience it offers the owner. With a key fob that remotely operates the ramp, you can wheel right into position, saving time and eliminating headaches. The hassle of transferring into a vehicle or breaking down and packing a wheelchair is gone—for you and your loved ones.

2

Location, Location, Location

Where you live and work can play a big role in what you drive and which options you choose, like side-entry or rear-entry. Restrictions outside your control might have an influence. Some communities are more proactive about providing accessible parking spots. Some homes have garages that are too narrow for certain types of vehicles. And curb height can even impact your choice when deciding between a foldout or infloor ramp.

3

Plan for Your Current (and Future) Driving Needs

In some cases, wheelchair users may face diminishing mobility due to conditions such as multiple sclerosis or muscular dystrophy. So it’s critical to consider not only what your vehicle needs are today, but what they could be tomorrow. What might not seem necessary now, could very well pay off later.

4

Stay Dry, Warm and Safe

No one wants to waste time in the snow, rain or blazing sun when they’re transferring into a vehicle or loading a wheelchair. A wheelchair accessible vehicle can conveniently get you out of the bad weather faster and on your way comfortably.

5

Seek the Advice of a Certified Mobility Consultant

When shopping for mobility equipment, it’s impossible to overstate the importance of working with a Certified Mobility Consultant. They’ll guide you through the products and solutions available, as well as help you make the best decision for you and your family.

How Important is Convenience to You?

One of the biggest perks of a wheelchair accessible vehicle is the convenience it offers the owner. With a key fob that remotely operates the ramp, you can wheel right into position, saving time and eliminating headaches. The hassle of transferring into a vehicle or breaking down and packing a wheelchair is gone—for you and your loved ones.

Location, Location, Location

Where you live and work can play a big role in what you drive and which options you choose, like side-entry or rear-entry. Restrictions outside your control might have an influence. Some communities are more proactive about providing accessible parking spots. Some homes have garages that are too narrow for certain types of vehicles. And curb height can even impact your choice when deciding between a foldout or infloor ramp.

Plan for Your Current (and Future) Driving Needs

In some cases, wheelchair users may face diminishing mobility due to conditions such as multiple sclerosis or muscular dystrophy. So it’s critical to consider not only what your vehicle needs are today, but what they could be tomorrow. What might not seem necessary now, could very well pay off later.

Stay Dry, Warm and Safe

No one wants to waste time in the snow, rain or blazing sun when they’re transferring into a vehicle or loading a wheelchair. A wheelchair accessible vehicle can conveniently get you out of the bad weather faster and on your way comfortably.

Seek the Advice of a Certified Mobility Consultant

When shopping for mobility equipment, it’s impossible to overstate the importance of working with a Certified Mobility Consultant. They’ll guide you through the products and solutions available, as well as help you make the best decision for you and your family.

Compare Your Options

Side-Entry Wheelchair Vans

Rear-Entry Wheelchair Vans

  • Gives you extra room for maneuverability because some or all of the floor has been lowered
  • Users can typically drive or ride in the first row (except for CompanionVan)
  • Users can also ride securely in the second row
  • Good fit for communities with plenty of handicap or parallel parking due to ramp deployment
  • Users ride from the second row to the rear via a channel
  • Offers plenty of ground clearance because most of the van’s floor has not been modified and the rear is  slightly elevated
Which entry style is best for your lifestyle?

Standard Height Vans

Extra Tall (XT) Height Vans

  • Between 52.5'' to 55'' of headroom at the doorway’s ramp entrance
  • Over 55” at the doorway’s ramp entrance
Not sure which size best fits your wheelchair?

Foldout Ramp

Infloor Ramp

  • Puts easy entry and exit within reach when you deploy the ramp over the curb
  • Allows user to push out and deploy the foldout ramp in case of an emergency
  • Less debris is collected resulting in less ramp maintenance
  • Ramp must be deployed for entry or exit through ramp doorway
  • No ramp deployment required for entry and exit
  • Ramp concealment helps the interior look closer to that of a standard minivan
  • High curbs may be a problem during deployment
  • Ramp maintenance is possible because ramp tends to collect more debris
Which is right for you?

Manual Ramp

Power Ramp

  • Offered on some BraunAbility wheelchair vans
  • Ideal for users who will always travel with a companion who can access the ramp easily
  • Cost-effective mobility option
  • Available on both side- and rear-entry vehicles
  • Provides exceptional convenience
  • Key fob remote opens the door, deploys the ramp and kneels the van
Which option best suits your lifestyle?

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