Municipal cities around the world are prioritizing accessibility for residents and tourists. Looking at the estimated number of people with a disability living in the world today — 1 billion — not to mention the aging population, focusing on improving accessibility isn’t just the right thing to do; it’s downright necessary.

While there isn’t a city on the planet that can be considered 100% accessible, there are cities worldwide that are leading the accessibility movement. Ten cities have been identified as most accessible by a Valuable 500 survey of 3,500 tourists with disabilities spanning five territories: the U.S., the UK, Australia, Japan and China.

How does a city make the list? Respondents based their choices on how close accommodations were to cultural attractions, restaurants and shops, as well as transportation links and how available information was regarding accessibility.

Which are the world’s most accessible cities? How many are in the U.S.?

Out of 10 Cities, 3 Are in the U.S.

The world’s most accessible cities identified in this survey were Singapore, Singapore; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Paris, France; Shanghai, China; London, UK; Sydney, Australia and Tokyo, Japan.

The three U.S. cities to make the list are Las Vegas, Nevada; New York, New York; and Orlando, Florida.

Las Vegas makes sense according to the timing of its development. Much of the Las Vegas strip was developed and renovated after the 1990 passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This means that the majority of its hotels and venues are ADA-compliant.

What makes Las Vegas an accessible city is also how it caters to people with disabilities. Many casinos train their staff on how to assist guests with vision and hearing disabilities at gaming tables. Large-print cards, braille and the use of electronic machines are often options as well. Some hotels also offer free lessons in gaming with sign-language interpreters.

As for New York, it made the list thanks to its information on accessibility. New York’s official guide features an accessibility page with a searchable database. You can search for accessible hotels, restaurants, attractions and more using a filter. Unfortunately, the subway system is far from accessible Only about 29% of its over 470 stations are accessible and, even then, they aren’t fully accessible.

Orlando’s 12 theme parks put Orlando on the world’s most accessible cities list. These theme parks are accessible to people with physical disabilities, as well as those with hearing, vision, cognitive and sensory disabilities.

Other U.S. Cities Known for Accessibility

While they didn’t make this particular survey, there are other U.S. cities that have been selected by various organizations and polls throughout the years for their accessibility.

For instance, Denver is known for being accessible, thanks in part to its highly accessible public transportation. It includes RTD light rail and bus services that are not only accessible but also offer 50% off for people with disabilities and seniors.

In addition to accessible public transit, Denver also has well-maintained sidewalks with plenty of curb cuts. Coupled with its flat terrain, Denver is easy to navigate. And thanks to almost all of its tourist attractions and city gardens being accessible, Denver is an ideal destination for tourists with disabilities.

More than just being an accessible city, Denver also prioritizes inclusive sports. It’s home to the National Sports Center for the Disabled, which has pioneered adaptative outdoor experiences over its 50-year history, and the non-profit Adaptive Adventure, which also provides adaptative outdoor sporting activities.

Another U.S. city known for accessibility is Seattle. It has over 900 restaurants and landmarks that are wheelchair accessible. The city itself also offers parking options for drivers with disabilities, including those who are legally blind or have a sensitivity to light. There are mandatory accessible bus options and the King Count’s Access service that will take you anywhere a Seattle streetcar, Metro bus or Sound Transit light rail goes.

Emphasis on Accessibility for an Increase in It

By celebrating cities that have focused on accessibility, the hope is more U.S. cities will follow suit. While there are many cities throughout the U.S. that offer accessible transportation, lodging and attractions, the country — and the world — is far from being fully accessible. One of the best ways to get there is by voting using your dollar. Visit those cities making accommodations!

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