Wheelchair-accessible vans give independence to those who need to use a wheelchair and for their drivers that take them around. However, the van is considered to be an unappealing thing for wheelchair users because it is, well, a minivan. It is known as a family car and some users would rather have a regular coupe or SUV instead. The downside with regular cars is that they are not wheelchair friendly in terms of storing it, but some would conform to it because it is inexpensive. Still, the pains of moving around with the wheelchair folded in the trunk or backseat, or even moving the person seat to seat is something bothersome to many for being physically hard. These are some of the benefits of a having wheelchair van.
With a car, the physicality of carrying people to the front seat and trying to get the wheelchair into the backseat leads to bodily pain and fatigue for the caretakers. For the back and neck, shoulders and arms, the consistent heavy duty works against the body, causing joint and muscle stress that could lead to tendinitis. Just moving the body hurts in itself after a period of time and people will seek to basic pain medications or braces to help those sore areas. With a wheelchair-accessible van, that hassle is reduced with the installation of a ramp for easy entry into vehicles where the person can just change seats from inside or not even have to leave the wheelchair. Some vans even lets the person in the wheelchair pull into the driver’s seat and they can drive.
That means a whole lot more freedom to do what they want in their van, regardless if the van is not an attractive vehicle to get behind. Yes, vans in general is not a fun car or a sporty, stylish thing, but it has a ton of room inside to move around and the side doors are usually automatic sliding ones. The rear chairs are removed to make the pathway for the ramp to sit and fold automatically outside for the wheelchair (or scooter) to get in and out.
With wheelchair-accessible vans, there is the cost factor and, as noted, is more expensive than a regular car or van. It should not be a deterrent because the cost of these customizable vans is part of the special features, just like how leather upholstery, LED lights, and a powerful engine are part of the high price in luxury cars. There are ways to help finance a specialized van such as worker’s compensation, job rehabilitation, and any other Veterans programs. Financing can also come through specialized programs and even deals with van dealerships.
A lot of people would want to not buy a wheelchair-friendly van, but it helps overall. The quality of people who move around will help with the van especially when they can park in parking spots right up front. For whatever imperfections a van has, it makes things a whole lot easier compared to the unfriendly sedan or convertible.