Accessible and inclusive experiences and places are identified as an emerging strength for New South Wales in the NSW Visitor Economy Strategy 2030.

What is accessible and inclusive tourism?

Accessible and inclusive tourism is about creating an environment and visitor experience that is welcoming to people of all ages and abilities. This could include parents with young children in prams, seniors with mobility requirements and people with permanent or temporary disabilities. Their access requirements may include physical/mobility, sensory, intellectual or neurological disabilities and are not limited to those who are wheelchair users.

Offering accessible and inclusive experiences can deliver a positive experience for the whole travel group.

More than a billion people globally are living with a disability, including more than 4.2 million in Australia. Ninety per cent of travellers with a disability take at least one leisure trip per year and 39 per cent travel three or more times per year, with their spend on accommodation, tours and activities more than the average trip when compared to someone not living with a disability. This is an important visitor market to consider when designing your experiences. Offering accessible and inclusive tourism experiences not only makes it easier for people with accessibility needs to travel, it can deliver a positive experience for the whole travel group.

Quick Tips: Tailor your product and marketing to become more accessible and inclusive


  • Provide images and videos on your website that clearly show access — including your entrance and reception area, outside areas, dining, rooms and parking — to help visitors plan their trip.
  • Provide clear signage with large, easy-to-read text.
  • Offer flexible arrangements for check-in and checkout.
  • Where possible, provide access to manual wheelchairs, powered wheelchairs and electric scooters, crutches, walkers and prams.
  • If meals are included, offer flexible menu options for people who have food allergies or intolerances.
  • Identify any barriers to the entry point and use of the hotel or room, and consider updates to address these, such as installing railings or a ramp, removing the lip on the floor of the shower, removing unnecessary furniture and reducing clutter.
  • Look at converting a number of rooms to provide more accessible options.

Tours & Attractions

  • Offer a Hearing Loop (or audio induction loop) to assist visitors with hearing aids to participate in audio experiences.
  • Visitor attractions can work with companies like BindiMaps to use Bluetooth beacons to map indoor spaces, allowing vision-impaired visitors to confidently navigate independently through a mobile app.
  • Where seating is included, consider offering seats with arm rests, to assist visitors to easily get back up. Consider offering seating throughout venue or tour itinerary.
  • Consider adapting your tour itinerary to be more inclusive of visitors' physical, sensory and cognitive needs. This could include an option for visitors to join or meet at different points, scheduling around quieter times for attractions and providing noise cancelling headsets.
  • If meals are included, offer flexible menu options for people who have food allergies or intolerances.
  • Ensure your site or tour vehicles have the right equipment to assist visitors to access your experience, such as wheelchair lifts.


  • Provide clear signage with large, easy-to-read text.
  • Read out menus or offer the option to download them onto a smartphone audio player.
  • Be willing to move tables around and provide seats with and without arms.
  • Use contrasting colours. For example, avoid using white crockery, white linen and clear glasses all together on a table setting.
  • Provide quieter areas with no background noise.
  • Provide the option to be seated in a well-lit area.
  • Offer flexible menu options for people who have food allergies or intolerances.

Customer service

  • Everyone is unique in their ability, so it is important not to assume you know how someone can participate – it’s best to ask as appropriate.
  • Be prepared to ask questions to ensure the guest is accommodated and comfortable with their experience.
  • Reinforce confidence within the team by preparing staff with inclusive training.
  • Get feedback on the service and stay in touch.
  • Ensure all staff have an in-depth understanding of the experience and the environment, this builds confidence with staff and visitors alike.
  • Remember that your visitors are coming for an experience, so think beyond the built facilities to how you can deliver a great experience to all. Consider the size of the whole travel party and making improvements for one particular need can deliver a positive experience for the whole group.

Quick tips: Be inclusive when communicating with visitors

Accessible and inclusive communication is clear, direct and easy to understand. Opportunities to use inclusive communications include:

  • Ensure you have an accessible website. See the recommended guidelines for making web content more accessible: Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0
  • Include a dedicated accessibility page on your website and link it from your home page, including:

- An access statement on your website that clearly outlines your accessible and inclusive offering

- Images that instil confidence, e.g., display an image of a wheelchair user or someone with limited mobility participating in your experience

- Videos that can be viewed on a mobile phone

- Include functionality to change text font size or a read out loud feature

- Contact details or a contact form to enable queries any time

  • Use appropriate language, for example Accessible Toilet, rather than Disabled Toilet.

Update your business plan to include your accessible and inclusive communications approach, and ensure that as your visitor economy business grows, so does your accessible and inclusive offering.

Quick tips: Update your ATDW-Online profile with accessibility features

The Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) is a national platform for digital information on tourism experiences in Australia. ATDW now include additional features on accessibility facilities within ATDW-Online, with selected fields appearing in search results on and

It is important fields are completed accurately to ensure the visitor can make an informed decision and the experience meets expectations. The fields are listed below:

  • Alternative text (alt text) must be included for images, providing a brief description of what is in the photo. This mandatory information benefits the visually impaired and improves the search engine optimisation (SEO) results.
  • Any accreditation received through accessibility programs can be selected from a dropdown list under the section of accreditation (optional).
  • Accessibility (mandatory). Select the truest statement reflecting the accessibility of the experience.
  • It is recommended to complete the additional optional fields under accessibility where appropriate, to provide more information to customers about the accessibility of an experience.

Checklist to get you started

  • Communicate clear and concise information on the website, including images and videos, on how visitors can access or participate in the experience
  • Update accessibility facilities information section on ATDW-Online
  • Update booking software details to reflect that the experience is accessible and inclusive
  • Train staff on disability awareness to instil confidence
  • Assess and adapt physical environment, i.e. Building access and experience surroundings


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Produced by Destination NSW in collaboration with Push Adventures.