For his PhD research, Kristof Tomej (Modul University Vienna, Austria) has been working on the topic of organized inclusive holidays that take place in groups consisting of people with and without visual impairment. Through three studies that involved qualitative interviewing, participant observations supported by a wearable camera, and two surveys, he explored the motivations of people for participating in such holiday, the various combinations of factors that lead to an interest in inclusive holidays, and ways in which such inclusive holidays can be designed to increase customer satisfaction.

Check out two video lectures delivered by Kristof on the topic:
* Disabilities and socially inclusive participation in tourism
* Motivations for participation in socially inclusive holidays with sighted guiding

You can read more about Kristof’s research here

The Netherlands / Thailand

Right to travel by air book cover

Dr. Lalin Kovudhikulrungsri (University of Bangkok, University of Leiden) wrote her doctoral thesis on the rights to travel by air of Persons with Disabilities.

Read more here.

Italy – SWAN (Smart Wheelchair for Air-travel Needs)

Four students from Technical University of Milan developed a device to facilitare air travel for passengers with reduced mobility: SWAN (Smart Wheelchair for Air-travel Needs).

Team Move_EZ from Technical University of Milan (Italy) developed SWAN in order to participate to the Airbus concourse “Fly Your Ideas”. They are currently developing the final structure of the device.

“Currently, for people with reduced mobility, taking a plane is stil stressful and painful. Airports and airplanes are still not developed to be fully accessible. SWAN is our idea to solve this crucial problem, it concerns a detachable airplane seat, which can be motorized through our device and controlled by a dedicated app.

Our goal is to avoid the stressful handling inside the airplane. With our device the passenger is free to use his personal wheelchair inside the airport and then switch to his actual airplane seat while he is still in the airport, if necessary our device can be also used from check in.

Since the concourse is still running we are not allowed to share more details about the App and about the features of our device, which we will give when it is concluded. Thanks to ATO for letting us share our project!”