Travel Tips - Private Transfers
SouthAfrica still has a serious lack of accessible public transport, despitecontinuous pressure from the Disability Sector. Although it is our basic humanright to be able to move through society in order to obtain education, trainingand employment - as well as social interaction and travel - none of these arepossible without accessible transport. It has fallen mainly on the shoulders ofenterprising NGOs and the private sector to try and fill the gap.
Many NGOs, special schools andretirement homesetc have accessible vehicles. Some of them hire them out
QASA has vehicles for hire in Durban and Jo’burg with fitted hand controls.
House Otto (Springs) provides accessible transport in Jo’burg and Ekurhuleni as well as transfers toand from OR Tambo. The charge is R4/km and R500/day. Driver costs extra.
CapeTown: According toGeraldine, who answered the phone, they offer transport to and from work andschool during the week and for shopping on weekends. She says they will alsotake you to the doctors during the week but this requires seven days notice. Itoperates as a bus-like service on the same routes as mainstream buses, sevendays-a-week from 06h00 – 19h00. You must complete a registration form andqualify for the service. I heard that there is a two-year waiting list for thisservice.
Durban: Durban now provides a similarservice to Cape Town throughout the eThekwini Metro Area, Monday to Fridaybetween 05h30 and 19h30 and weekends from 06h00 to 19h00. A fleet of speciallyadapted long wheel-base minibuses take 13 conventional seats and threewheelchair users per trip, using hydraulic lifts as access. The drivers aretrained to the specific needs of people with disabilities but some users arecomplaining of high costs.
Anotheroption is to hire a wheelchair friendly vehicle and driver for the entire day.Most of the options below accommodate a number of passengers in wheelchairs andare therefore expensive but you could sign up a bus load of friends and sharethe costs between you. Many of them have disability savvy drivers and some havehand controls.
Avis offer their specially adapted,chauffeur-driven Quantum minibus with assisted access in Cape Town andJohannesburg.
Rikkis in Cape Town run a fleet of Londonstyle cabs with ramps that will fit one person seated in a manual or electricwheelchair plus one other traveller. Please remember to ask for your extenderseat belt strap to go around your chair.Prices seem quite reasonable. There are also a number of RIKKIfree phones dotted around Cape Town. You just pick up the receiver and wait foran operator to speak to. How cool is that?
EpicEnabled in CapeTown and Jo’burg are very willing to help. They have a Mercedes Benz SafariTruck with a passenger lift and a Mercedes Benz Sprinter bus with ramps. Theyalso offer 8-day Kruger Safaris, 5-day Garden Route tours, 12-day Kruger andGarden Route tours as well as day trips in Cape Town and Jo’burg.
Travelwith René is CapeTown based. The owner, René Moses, is a quadriplegic herself and wellunderstands our needs! They have a Nissan Primastar with a wheelchair lift thatseats various seating options including x3 wheelchairs plus x2 seated or x1wheelchair plus x5 seated passengers. The vehicle is air-conditioned and hastinted windows.
FlamingoTours is a Capebased company that specialises in satisfying customers with special needs. Whenyou tour with them you have access to their qualified nursing staff and 24/7emergency care from their medical doctors. You can either get their traineddrivers to transport you or take advantage of their vehicles with handcontrols.