Jump to content
adisguise

Able bodied in disabled cabins

Recommended Posts

Cruise out of Miami on 15 March 2015 around the S. Caribbean.

Celebrity Eclipse.

My husband is a full time wheelchair user. I always have a HUGE amount of difficulty booking a disabled cabin. I never dreamed that able bodied cruisers would be allowed to book a disabled cabin - how wrong I was.

The couple in the cabin next to us, able bodied, had booked their disabled cabin 3104, with Celebrity Eclipse, over a year ago on the advice of their travel agent, as it is 'a much larger cabin'

The US couple on our table, 229, frequently booked either cabin 3102, our cabin, or 3104 as the cabins are bigger, they even quoted the sq2!

 

On returning to the UK I learned that a work colleague also booked disabled cabins, not sure which cruiseline, over 1 yr ahead as 'it is a larger cabin!'

The disabled traveller NEEDS a larger cabin to be able to access the bathroom, bed, etc. and in fact go on a cruise holiday.

How we would love to have a 'normal' sized cabin and ditch the wheelchair and MS. If only this were an option.

I am disgusted to learn that cruise companies are allowing able bodied travellers to book disabled cabins when there are so few disabled cabins available.

We have been on 10 cruises but this has put us off going again. No wonder it is so difficult to book a disabled cabin. I am disgusted to learn that cruise companies are treating disabled travellers with such disdain! :mad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a result of the United States Supreme Court Rules on Spector et. al. VS Norwegian Cruise Lines. a Federal Law under the Department of Transportation ( commonly referred to as DOT) became effective on January 1, 2012 that requires that the cruise lines with ships embarking from the USA have to verify that the person occupying the cabin has a medical or physical need to book the cabin. Some of the key points to this new law are:

 

(g) To prevent fraud in the assignment of accessible cabins (e.g., attempts by individuals who do not have disabilities to reserve accessible cabins because they have greater space, you—

(1) Must inquire of persons seeking to reserve such cabins whether the individual (or an individual for whom the cabin is being reserved) has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the cabin.

(2) May require a written attestation from the individual that accessible cabin is for a person who has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the cabin.

 

Under this law the only times it's acceptable for an able body person to book an HC cabin is after the final payment period has past and any unsold HC cabins are than open to the general public for booking or if it's the last available cabin with the specific category. This law does not apply to cruises embarking from non-USA ports.

 

However as much as things have improved since 2012 regarding booking of Accessible cabins there are still flaws in the process. The main one is that the verification process only requires the passenger(s) to either check a box at tie of doing the on-line check-in certifying the need for the accessible cabin and or complete a special needs form. Due USA Federal Privacy laws the cruise lines are very limited as to what information they can request from the passenger. Therefore unfortunately there are still able body people that are willing to lie to get the larger room. You also have to take into consideration that not all disabilities are noticeable. There were many years that I'm certain other passengers questioned my need for an accessible cabin as I did not use any mobility items but did require the features of a zero-threshold bathroom/shower due to balance issues from MS. A

 

If the cruise line determines that the passenger(s) falsely certified the need for an accessible cabin than the cruise line can move the passenger(s) without notice to a standard cabin and or banned them all together from the cruise.

Edited by xxoocruiser

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds encouraging that some authorities are on to this dispicable practice by a minority of people. I feel that more needs to be done in particular in draughting the terms and conditions to make it a very risky thing to do where people are simply seeking a bigger cabin for the money.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thankyou xxoocruiser for that useful information. I will contact DOT.

 

I appreciate that some disabilities are unseen but the woman in the HC cabin 3104 next to us actually told me that they did not need the cabin and felt a bit guilty having it but her travel agent told them to book it, over a year ago, as it is a larger cabin. They could have said no! Their greed nearly stopped us travelling, we had a last minute cancellation.

The couple on our table, both fully able bodied, always try and have booked 3102/4 HC cabins because they are bigger. Some people have no concience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

 

I have a certain amount of sympathy for the cruise lines as they are sometimes between a rock and a hard place.

 

I am sailing from San Francisco in October and have booked an accessible cabin which I need, I booked this in the UK (which as most will know that there are similar disability laws in the UK but with differences). I received a letter from the cruise line asking for a letter from my doctor to prove that I needed the accessible cabin. I wrote back to them expressing how impressed I was with them in the fact that they were trying to ensure that the correct people were able to use these cabins but as my doctor would charge for this letter I felt that it was discriminatory for me to pay to prove that I am disabled, I also advised them that I would willingly provide them with a letter from my doctor but at their expense.

 

This was several months ago but I haven't heard anything from them.

 

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Enforcer, sorry you have to pay for your GPs letter. We are in Wales and didn't have to pay.

It's bad enough having to pay for a larger cabin and missing out on cabin deals without extra payments.

If people take a disabled cabin without the need they should be fined double the cost of the cabin. That might put them off.

 

We would love to not need a disabled cabin with roll in shower.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We paid our physician for a letter several years ago ($25 Canadian, I believe) stating that the disability is permanent, requires a wheelchair, pre-boarding, accessible rooms, etc. We keep one copy in our documents when we travel, and our travel agent has a copy to provide when booking our cruises, flights, hotels etc. That letter has paid for itself many times over. Disney, RCI and HAL have requested proof that we need an accessible room. We were disappointed recently to learn that NCL does not ask for proof, and we were very lucky to be able to book a handicapped room for our Hawaiian cruise which is over two years away. Our agent said that NCL is known for not asking for proof of need, and therefore the accessible rooms sell-out immediately.

Edited by onelegcraig

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Strange how you/we have to provide such detailed information yet others, not in need of disabled cabins, are able to book without any question.

The cruise companies need to review their booking procedures, especially as some may be breaking US law.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thankyou xxoocruiser for that useful information. I will contact DOT.

 

I appreciate that some disabilities are unseen but the woman in the HC cabin 3104 next to us actually told me that they did not need the cabin and felt a bit guilty having it but her travel agent told them to book it, over a year ago, as it is a larger cabin. They could have said no! Their greed nearly stopped us travelling, we had a last minute cancellation.

The couple on our table, both fully able bodied, always try and have booked 3102/4 HC cabins because they are bigger. Some people have no conscience.

 

Based on what 3104 cabin told you it can only be assumed that t they fraudulently falsified there need for an accessible cabin to RCCL which is a direct violation of the USA law since the cruise embarked from a USA port. If it had been me I might have left an anonymous at Guest Services a diving RCCL that the passengers in in that cabin were bragging how they booked an accessible cabin a year in advance while having not need.

 

As far as the other able body passenger at your table there is always the possibility that they originally booked a standard cabin than attempt to changed to an accessible cabin after the final period has past which is acceptable under USA law.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting. Thank you for your insights. I have problems with mobility and have my disability permit with me, when we travel. Even so I still feel guilty driving into the handicap spaces and using the Accessible Cabins, as some days I am more mobile than others. I have my odd good days and mostly very bad weeks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As the wife of an amputee...

1)maybe just because you can not see the disabilty does NOT mean it does not exsist!

2) that the aids available in the room are needed...even if you CAN'T tell by looking

3) maybe you can think of that before you assume you know someone's limits based on what you observe.

not everyone "shares" their private information.

:confused::confused::confused::confused::confused:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Interesting. Thank you for your insights. I have problems with mobility and have my disability permit with me, when we travel. Even so I still feel guilty driving into the handicap spaces and using the Accessible Cabins, as some days I am more mobile than others. I have my odd good days and mostly very bad weeks.

 

FYI - Parking Placards are generally not accepted as a proof of ones disability other than for it's primary use ... which is to park in a HC space. Reason being that there are unethical doctors that will fraudulently approve an HC Parking Placard application as well as HC Parking Placards are often easy to counterfeit. This isn't meant to imply that your placard wasn't properly obtained but rather to let you know that it's generally not accepted as proof of ones disability for these reasons.

Edited by xxoocruiser

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As the wife of an amputee...

1)maybe just because you can not see the disabilty does NOT mean it does not exsist!

2) that the aids available in the room are needed...even if you CAN'T tell by looking

3) maybe you can think of that before you assume you know someone's limits based on what you observe.

not everyone "shares" their private information.

:confused::confused::confused::confused::confused:

 

 

Well stated !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As the wife of an amputee...

1)maybe just because you can not see the disabilty does NOT mean it does not exsist!

2) that the aids available in the room are needed...even if you CAN'T tell by looking

3) maybe you can think of that before you assume you know someone's limits based on what you observe.

not everyone "shares" their private information.

:confused::confused::confused::confused::confused:

 

Have you posted this on the wrong thread? The people getting stick on here are the ones who admit they are not disabled but book a disabled cabin because it's bigger. No-one is criticising genuinely disabled who don't look disabled.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
FYI - Parking Placards are generally not accepted as a proof of ones disability other than for it's primary use ... which is to park in a HC space. Reason being that there are unethical doctors that will fraudulently approve an HC Parking Placard application as well as HC Parking Placards are often easy to counterfeit. This isn't meant to imply that your placard wasn't properly obtained but rather to let you know that it's generally not accepted as proof of ones disability for these reasons.

 

 

Wasn't what I was implying as having that permit with me as proof of disability.

 

Agree with you that some of the HC permits are questionable, but have to think that the system does work well in the greater picture of life. I take it with us when we travel to use if we rent a car on Holiday, as we usually do a TA and take time once we disembark to travel. As I suffer from severe Chronic Pain and use a cane; some days I am better than others and can get around while other days, well.

 

It is difficult as it is to get an HC Cabin without those who do brag of getting one when they really do not qualify for one. More stringent controls do need to be in place.

 

Agree with the other poster " Elle64" who was mentioning about not having someone comment, just because you do not look like you are disabled.

 

This will be the first time we have been able to get an HC cabin so we will see what transpires.

Edited by Folk Singer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to be clear...I was saying that to some it may appear that we DO NOT have a handicap ..a reason for the larger room....maybe NCL should be more careful when booking these limited rooms. :o

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have had an hc cabin on ncl,x,princess and have a reservation for rci and ncl....not one question of why I need the cabin nor request for any proof.....I could easily provide it...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I agree that it would be a hassle to have to provide a Doctor's note justifying the need for the cabin - we would happily provide one. Especially since that is one of the only ways we could help the cruise ship keep the cabins for those who really need them.

 

I don't understand the resistance to providing documentation of your disability. To me its no different than having to put up the handicapped placard on the car when parking in a disabled space.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have had hemiplegia (CP) since birth and I am a partial wheelchair user. At home I have a level access shower so when I go on a cruise I can cope in a standard cabin because I know there are people who need a disable cabin more.

I have only had a disabled cabin on RCI but got a few looks. On ship I use a walker but am often seen as abled bodied. I am on Britannia at weekend ( May) and I would love to use the pools and I know there is a hoist. I have been told that only full time wheelchair users can us it. Even when you obviously have a disability people don't see it.

 

Yes I have come across people who have a disabled cabin and are abled bodied and I do not find it offensive to prove I am disabled after all I have nothing to hide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I felt that it was discriminatory for me to pay to prove that I am disabled, I also advised them that I would willingly provide them with a letter from my doctor but at their expense.

 

This was several months ago but I haven't heard anything from them.

 

Pete

 

It is a pity you took this hard line on the issue with a cruise line which was trying to insure fair play on this problem. The cost of a doctor's letter would be about £30 I should think which is a very small amount when you consider that it would be valid for many cruises thereafter the first. Many people in the UK get special financial allowances because they are disabled; and rightly so, and in many cases these special payouts are in place to try and address the additional expense of coping with a disability.

 

Regards John

Edited by john watson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I fail to understand what is so difficult about carrying or having travel documents from one's doctor. Make it part of a regular check-up. My doctor has mine on file and just up-dates, prints, signs and hands it to me; along with all the test results and other paperwork. I keep my current travel letter with my travel documents. Also, when traveling in Europe, I take my HC placard. My letter does not indicate my illness, only what my needs are and certain capabilities.

 

For every cruise, I always fill out and provide the SNF (Special needs form) when I make my reservation.

 

I view the documentation as something for my own health and safety. It is not discrimination against me, it is something to protect me.

 

Betty

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It is a pity you took this hard line on the issue with a cruise line which was trying to insure fair play on this problem. The cost of a doctor's letter would be about £30 I should think which is a very small amount when you consider that it would be valid for many cruises thereafter the first. Many people in the UK get special financial allowances because they are disabled; and rightly so, and in many cases these special payouts are in place to try and address the additional expense of coping with a disability.

 

Regards John

 

Hi John,

 

Where would you want it to stop, do I have to provide a doctors letter every time I require reasonable adjustment when trying to live as normal life as I can.

 

So that you understand it is discriminatory for any provider of a service to require someone who is disabled to do something that an able bodied person doesn't - namely pay for a doctors letter, an able bodied person doesn't have to provide a letter to say they are "fit to cruise"

 

As I said in my original post

"Hi,

 

I have a certain amount of sympathy for the cruise lines as they are sometimes between a rock and a hard place.

 

I am sailing from San Francisco in October and have booked an accessible cabin which I need, I booked this in the UK (which as most will know that there are similar disability laws in the UK but with differences). I received a letter from the cruise line asking for a letter from my doctor to prove that I needed the accessible cabin. I wrote back to them expressing how impressed I was with them in the fact that they were trying to ensure that the correct people were able to use these cabins but as my doctor would charge for this letter I felt that it was discriminatory for me to pay to prove that I am disabled, I also advised them that I would willingly provide them with a letter from my doctor but at their expense.

 

This was several months ago but I haven't heard anything from them.

 

Pete"

 

It is a shame that you failed to quote the full post as I have highlighted relevant points that show your post up a borderline offensive.

 

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So that you understand it is discriminatory for any provider of a service to require someone who is disabled to do something that an able bodied person doesn't - namely pay for a doctors letter, an able bodied person doesn't have to provide a letter to say they are "fit to cruise"

 

Pete,

 

I think maybe you missed the problem.

 

The whole issue is the “Accessible or Handicap cabin”, not the cruise. If the cruise lines could insist that those who need an HC cabin had to provide a doctor's statement indicating their needs, not their medical condition, able bodied people would not be using those cabins for their comfort. So, if an able bodied wanted to reserve one of those cabins, they would have to provide a doctor's certificate, the same as a HC person; and there is not any discrimination.

 

As I suggested, in my earlier post, an individual can have a letter created as part of their standard checked, thus no charge involved. The European medical services provided documentation with check-ups long before the U.S. did, thus it should be available without question or charge. My doctors require I have semi-annual check-ups, but I only request the letter with the spring visit. Most airlines require doctor's certification be within a year of flight.

 

Even you missed the comment that the cruise line ask for the letter for the specific cabin, not the cruise. The HC does not need any documentation for a standard cabin. They can submit a SNF form for their own safety if they wish, however that is up to the individual.

 

Again, the need for a doctor's certificate is for the cabin, not the cruise. If you do not want the able bodied people using those cabins, then help the cruise lines restrict those cabins.

 

Betty

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi John,

 

Where would you want it to stop, do I have to provide a doctors letter every time I require reasonable adjustment when trying to live as normal life as I can.

 

So that you understand it is discriminatory for any provider of a service to require someone who is disabled to do something that an able bodied person doesn't - namely pay for a doctors letter, an able bodied person doesn't have to provide a letter to say they are "fit to cruise"

 

As I said in my original post

"Hi,

 

I have a certain amount of sympathy for the cruise lines as they are sometimes between a rock and a hard place.

 

I am sailing from San Francisco in October and have booked an accessible cabin which I need, I booked this in the UK (which as most will know that there are similar disability laws in the UK but with differences). I received a letter from the cruise line asking for a letter from my doctor to prove that I needed the accessible cabin. I wrote back to them expressing how impressed I was with them in the fact that they were trying to ensure that the correct people were able to use these cabins but as my doctor would charge for this letter I felt that it was discriminatory for me to pay to prove that I am disabled, I also advised them that I would willingly provide them with a letter from my doctor but at their expense.

 

This was several months ago but I haven't heard anything from them.

 

Pete"

 

It is a shame that you failed to quote the full post as I have highlighted relevant points that show your post up a borderline offensive.

 

Pete

 

Hi Pete,

 

The only reason I only quoted part of your posting was because you focused on the money and cite discrimination in having to pay as the issue. I do not dispute that this is discrimination. The doctors letter as I see it would only be needed to be written once and thereafter reused for other purposes as well as for cruising, where adjustments to accommodate your needs would need to be made accordingly as appropriate. This cost in my view is therefore trivial whereas the broader issue is much larger which I see as the cynical booking of adapted cabins to get a larger cabin at a budget price. I see the likely outcome to be that cruise lines will drop the procedure of insisting on seeing appropriate evidence regarding whether passengers need an adapted cabin or not and just booking anyone into the far too few adapted cabins available which I think will be a major tragedy. I feel this broader issue is best addressed first then afterwards an examination of how to get round the payments issue. In this respect consultation with ones member of parliament might be the answer.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Pete,

 

The only reason I only quoted part of your posting was because you focused on the money and cite discrimination in having to pay as the issue. I do not dispute that this is discrimination. The doctors letter as I see it would only be needed to be written once and thereafter reused for other purposes as well as for cruising, where adjustments to accommodate your needs would need to be made accordingly as appropriate. This cost in my view is therefore trivial whereas the broader issue is much larger which I see as the cynical booking of adapted cabins to get a larger cabin at a budget price. I see the likely outcome to be that cruise lines will drop the procedure of insisting on seeing appropriate evidence regarding whether passengers need an adapted cabin or not and just booking anyone into the far too few adapted cabins available which I think will be a major tragedy. I feel this broader issue is best addressed first then afterwards an examination of how to get round the payments issue. In this respect consultation with ones member of parliament might be the answer.

 

Regards John

 

Based on the law sited in Post # 2 it's unlikely that any cruise ship departing from a USA port will intentional drop the certification/verification process for booking accessible cabins. Unfamiliar with any laws in other countries pertaining to this matter.

Edited by xxoocruiser

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Based on the law sited in Post # 2 it's unlikely that any cruise ship departing from a USA port will intentional drop the certification/verification process for booking accessible cabins. Unfamiliar with any laws in other countries pertaining to this matter.

 

Yes, the United States is taking this abuse very seriously; rightly so, and draughted specific legislation. In other parts of the world crusing is not such a major industry and there they might well be a bit more lax and any opportunity to not bother may well creep in with some cruise lines in those parts of the world. Lines could adopt the policy wherever they are sailing and stick rigidly to it. In this respect; it is my opinion that everybody should try as much as they can to encourage and support any effort from any cruise line in upholding these principals worldwide even passengers reporting cruise lines that did not insist on seeing relevant documentation to make sure that standards are upheld.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi John,

 

Where would you want it to stop, do I have to provide a doctors letter every time I require reasonable adjustment when trying to live as normal life as I can.

 

So that you understand it is discriminatory for any provider of a service to require someone who is disabled to do something that an able bodied person doesn't - namely pay for a doctors letter, an able bodied person doesn't have to provide a letter to say they are "fit to cruise"

 

As I said in my original post

"Hi,

 

I have a certain amount of sympathy for the cruise lines as they are sometimes between a rock and a hard place.

 

I am sailing from San Francisco in October and have booked an accessible cabin which I need, I booked this in the UK (which as most will know that there are similar disability laws in the UK but with differences). I received a letter from the cruise line asking for a letter from my doctor to prove that I needed the accessible cabin. I wrote back to them expressing how impressed I was with them in the fact that they were trying to ensure that the correct people were able to use these cabins but as my doctor would charge for this letter I felt that it was discriminatory for me to pay to prove that I am disabled, I also advised them that I would willingly provide them with a letter from my doctor but at their expense.

 

This was several months ago but I haven't heard anything from them.

 

Pete"

 

It is a shame that you failed to quote the full post as I have highlighted relevant points that show your post up a borderline offensive.

 

Pete

ok pete!!! so instead of paying the doctors for the note, and the cruise line asking , lets say someone who wants a "larger room " does so with no dr. note... now you cant even go!!! wasn't it worth the dr. note? ?????

ALSO>>>>>

if you are truly disabled,(not saying your not)chances are more then likely you should see your doctor before traveling . so WHILE there, request the note in hand from the dr.... it wont cost you a thing!! plus your disability most likely causes extra dr. visits ,and/or visits with a specialist.. who know you, and therefor will give you the note!

a great idea comes form your post... they can make it so that the note must be faxed /sent to them directly from your doctor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
if you are truly disabled,(not saying your not)chances are more then likely you should see your doctor before traveling . so WHILE there, request the note in hand from the dr.... it wont cost you a thing!!

 

Can't speak for the Original Poster (OP) but I can for my mother. Anytime she wants a note for anything or paperwork completed, there is a $25 charge.

 

We usually take 2-3 cruises a year, plus stay at between 10-15 hotels a year - what if all of them started to request a doctor's letter for their files?

 

Why can't they just have a form that is mandatory for people to fill out saying:

 

a) I have a disability and require the accessible stateroom;

b) I require the following accommodations / am bringing the following supports.

 

The special needs form should be filled out but let me tell you - I recently booked over the phone with Celebrity and booked an accessible cabin (at a guarantee rate - that was a first and I have to thank this board for knowing we could do that). Despite obviously consulting with special needs, the agent never told me to complete the online form for special needs, nor have I been contacted by special needs to fill out the form.

 

If everyone who booked an accessible stateroom was told, fill out the form, you have two weeks or you're automatically moved to a regular stateroom, you'd probably have less people booking accessible staterooms who don't need them.

 

People get this idea (from the cruise websites, from TAs, from wherever) that if they book an accessible stateroom and it's needed by someone with a disability, they'll be moved from that stateroom into a "better" stateroom.

 

If people had to sign the attestation, fewer would book the cabins they don't need because most people would feel guilty about signing a paper that says, "I am disabled." when they are not. And frankly, those who wouldn't feel guilty, would also probably have no issue going to their doctor and getting a note saying they needed an accessible cabin anyways (and I'm sure many doctors would sign the form).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Can't speak for the Original Poster (OP) but I can for my mother. Anytime she wants a note for anything or paperwork completed, there is a $25 charge.

 

We usually take 2-3 cruises a year, plus stay at between 10-15 hotels a year - what if all of them started to request a doctor's letter for their files?

 

well if your mom is not known/liked enough by the doctor for him to hand it to her at the visit...(do not ask the secretary, but the actual doctor WHILE seeing him/her)..then she would get the paper ONCE, and if the disability is permanent,it will say so,and she would keep it safe, and reuse it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
And frankly, those who wouldn't feel guilty, would also probably have no issue going to their doctor and getting a note saying they needed an accessible cabin anyways (and I'm sure many doctors would sign the form).

true.. but the chances go down drastically when not only do they have to be slightly dishonest, but also ask a doctor to be dishonest for them, and have a doctor be dishonest enough to write it ...

NOT SAYING IT WOULD NOT HAPPEN.. but many who will say yes disabled to get the room will not want to even admit to their doctor they want to do so... much less have the dr. sign on that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
true.. but the chances go down drastically when not only do they have to be slightly dishonest, but also ask a doctor to be dishonest for them, and have a doctor be dishonest enough to write it ...

NOT SAYING IT WOULD NOT HAPPEN.. but many who will say yes disabled to get the room will not want to even admit to their doctor they want to do so... much less have the dr. sign on that.

 

Not too mention that most States have laws that specifying that if a Doctor falsely signs a document that the information contained in that document cannot be backed up with the appropriated medical records and or legal records than that Doctor can be fined as well as potentially lose their medical license. No credible Doctor will take the chance of losing their license.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
well if your mom is not known/liked enough by the doctor for him to hand it to her at the visit...(do not ask the secretary, but the actual doctor WHILE seeing him/her)..then she would get the paper ONCE, and if the disability is permanent,it will say so,and she would keep it safe, and reuse it.

 

It has nothing to do with that. Our OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan) does not cover medical documentation AT ALL. My mother gets a home visit due to the fact that her doctor's office is not wheelchair accessible so he comes to the house every 3 months for a check up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some physicians require payment for completing letters or documentation regardless of how often you see them. For instance, school forms required to play sports...some physicians charge $25 to fill those out (and that's a standard form, not a customized letter). I'm in the U. S. Where everything is monetized, though....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cruise lines could formulate a range of documents which are acceptable as evidence that the passenger has a disability which people could choose from and turn up with.

 

This could include a doctor's letter (which you pay for once and re-use) and Disabled Persons "Blue Badge" parking permit etc. There must be a number of official documents which would be acceptable.

 

The alternative to just going on the basis that people just have to say "I'm disabled" is that unscrupulous people will acquire unfairly a big cabin at a bargain price.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The cruise lines could formulate a range of documents which are acceptable as evidence that the passenger has a disability which people could choose from and turn up with.

 

This could include a doctor's letter (which you pay for once and re-use) and Disabled Persons "Blue Badge" parking permit etc. There must be a number of official documents which would be acceptable.

 

The alternative to just going on the basis that people just have to say "I'm disabled" is that unscrupulous people will acquire unfairly a big cabin at a bargain price.

 

Regards John

 

In the State of Illinois the HC Parking Placard is NOT considered to be an expectable document to be submitted to any agency and or company as legal proof of ones disability. Rather it only proves that the individual has met the State's requirement to have such a placard. It is NOT proof that a person has a disability the requires the features of an accessible cabin as is stated in the USA Federal Law that went into effect 1/1/2012

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
In the State of Illinois the HC Parking Placard is NOT considered to be an expectable document to be submitted to any agency and or company as legal proof of ones disability. Rather it only proves that the individual has met the State's requirement to have such a placard. It is NOT proof that a person has a disability the requires the features of an accessible cabin as is stated in the USA Federal Law that went into effect 1/1/2012

 

On this basis I should suggest somebody from the cruise lines looks at the Federal Law that went into effect 1/1/2012 and see if an appropriate list of documents may be formulated to make it easier for passengers and cruise lines to comply because at the moment it seems anyone can book and travel in these cabins so long as they just say they are disabled. In suggesting the Blue Badge parking permits I was simply thinking it is better than nothing, cheaper as people already have them and generally understood throughout Europe.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On this basis I should suggest somebody from the cruise lines looks at the Federal Law that went into effect 1/1/2012 and see if an appropriate list of documents may be formulated to make it easier for passengers and cruise lines to comply because at the moment it seems anyone can book and travel in these cabins so long as they just say they are disabled. In suggesting the Blue Badge parking permits I was simply thinking it is better than nothing, cheaper as people already have them and generally understood throughout Europe.

 

Regards John

 

The law that went into effect 1/1/2012 does not specifically list the documents required to prove one's disability rather it states that the individual needing the accessible cabin has to a have a disability or mobility disability requiring the features provided in an accessible cabin and the cruise line has the right to ask for verification.

 

Following is an example of why a Blue HC Placard does not serve as proof that an individual requires the features provided in an accessible cabin :

  • My sister and I both meet the State of Illinois requirements for eligibility of a Blue HC parking placard.
  • Though my sister has a blue HC parking placard her reason for eligibility does not require her to have to book accessible cabins as she does not require the features of such cabin as is required under the 1/1/202 Federal Law.
  • I on the other hand have a mobility disability that requires the need for extra space to accommodate a walker, mobility scooter. Additionally requiring a zero threshold entry into the bathroom and shower as well as the need for grab bars and a raised toilet.

 

As a result of the United States Supreme Court Rules on Spector et. al. VS Norwegian Cruise Lines. a Federal Law under the Department of Transportation ( commonly referred to as DOT) became effective on January 1, 2012 for cruise ships departing from a USA port that requires that the cruise lines have to verify that the person occupying the cabin has a medical or physical need to book the cabin .

 

(g) To prevent fraud in the assignment of accessible cabins (e.g., attempts by individuals who do not have disabilities to reserve accessible cabins because they have greater space, you—

(1) Must inquire of persons seeking to reserve such cabins whether the individual (or an individual for whom the cabin is being reserved) has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the cabin.

(2) May require a written attestation from the individual that accessible cabin is for a person who has a mobility disability or a disability that requires the use of the accessible features that are provided in the cabin.

 

Under this law the only time it's acceptable for an able body person to book an HC cabin is after the final payment period has past and any unsold HC cabins are than open to the general public for booking.

Edited by xxoocruiser

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The law that went into effect 1/1/2012 does not specifically list the documents required to prove one's disability rather it states that the individual needing the accessible cabin has to a have a disability or mobility disability requiring the features provided in an accessible cabin and the cruise line has the right to ask for verification.

 

Following is an example of why a Blue HC Placard does not serve as proof that an individual requires the features provided in an accessible cabin :

  • My sister and I both meet the State of Illinois requirements for eligibility of a Blue HC parking placard.
  • Though my sister has a blue HC parking placard her reason for eligibility does not require her to have to book accessible cabins as she does not require the features of such cabin as is required under the 1/1/202 Federal Law.
  • I on the other hand have a mobility disability that requires the need for extra space to accommodate a walker, mobility scooter. Additionally requiring a zero threshold entry into the bathroom and shower as well as the need for grab bars and a raised toilet.

 

As a result of the United States Supreme Court Rules on Spector et. al. VS Norwegian Cruise Lines. a Federal Law under the Department of Transportation ( commonly referred to as DOT) became effective on January 1, 2012 for cruise ships departing from a USA port that requires that the cruise lines have to verify that the person occupying the cabin has a medical or physical need to book the cabin .

 

In establishing that a passenger may appropriately have an adapted cabin the cruise line seems to have to satisfy themselves that the passenger has a disability and that the type of disability present makes the adaptions in the cabin necessary.

 

I am thinking that stage one is easiest to establish with documentation and whilst you and your good sister would be able to produce your Illinois Blue HC Placards and others similar documents as appropriate, many bogus people would not get past this stage at an attempted booking. This would cut them out at the early booking stage.

 

Stage two, providing evidence that your disability necessitates the use of an adapted cabin is more difficult. A doctor's letter specifically outlining this point would be useful as would a form from the cruise line or industry outlining all the points or adaptions to make it easier and cheaper for doctors to complete. The form could be reused and cruise lines can also keep records for future cruises. From what you said about your sister she would not be able to get through this stage. I am wondering how else this problem could be addressed. The number of adapted cabins on any cruise ship is very small and they should only be taken by people who genuinely need them.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
In establishing that a passenger may appropriately have an adapted cabin the cruise line seems to have to satisfy themselves that the passenger has a disability and that the type of disability present makes the adaptions in the cabin necessary.

 

I am thinking that stage one is easiest to establish with documentation and whilst you and your good sister would be able to produce your Illinois Blue HC Placards and others similar documents as appropriate, many bogus people would not get past this stage at an attempted booking. This would cut them out at the early booking stage.

 

One thing you haven't factored in to your plan is the high rate of counterfeit blue HC placards in circulation. Not every state has checks and balances to help minimize the circulation of HC placards nor are placards standardized in the USA. Additionally high grade color printers have made it even easier to produce counterfeit placards.

 

Some states don't even code them to have the gender and the birth year of the person make on the placard. The State of Illinois is constantly challenged with making HC placard harder to counterfeit. It has even imposed fines for Doctors that fraudulently approve the application for someone that does not meet the state's criteria but instead just wants it so their car doesn't get scratched. Additionally Illinois placards are coded with gender and the birth year of the person it's assigned as well as having a hieroglyphic symbol. Even with all these check and balances 20% of the placards being used in Illinois are counterfeit or were fraudulently obtained.

 

Bottom line - An HC placard is NOT considered as legal proof of a person having a disability that requires the features of an accessible cruise cabin. So if the cruise lines use that a criteria someone will just produce their parents and book an accessible cabin any way resulting in the continuing problem of able bodied persons booking an accessible cabin just for the added space.

 

.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
One thing you haven't factored in to your plan is the high rate of counterfeit blue HC placards in circulation. Not every state has checks and balances to help minimize the circulation of HC placards nor are placards standardized in the USA. Additionally high grade color printers have made it even easier to produce counterfeit placards.

 

Some states don't even code them to have the gender and the birth year of the person make on the placard. The State of Illinois is constantly challenged with making HC placard harder to counterfeit. It has even imposed fines for Doctors that fraudulently approve the application for someone that does not meet the state's criteria but instead just wants it so their car doesn't get scratched. Additionally Illinois placards are coded with gender and the birth year of the person it's assigned as well as having a hieroglyphic symbol. Even with all these check and balances 20% of the placards being used in Illinois are counterfeit or were fraudulently obtained.

 

 

.

 

This is just get beyond stage one. There will be unscrupulous dealers in false parking permits and fraudulent doctors. Many places are being hit by fraudsters looking to park conveniently close to the city centre for less money. However the fact is that this larger cabin on the cheap problem exists and needs to be stopped.

 

What surprises me is that not many people on this thread are offering a positive way of how to stop these people. Many just complain which is understandable but no suggestions on how the cruise lines can sort out these people.

 

Regards John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Explore the Night. Sweepstakes - Enter now for a chance to win win a free cruise for two with Azamara Club Cruises!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Community Contests
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×