Over the years, my main focus has been autism travel. However, when it comes to working with clients, autism travel can turn into so much more. Maybe there are other health concerns. Or personal concerns. Or in more recent weeks, a client approached me about autistic travel for theirLGBTQ+ family.
They contacted me wanting to know how I could help them in boththese areas when they took their next family vacation. My very first goal with this family was to discuss their options of LGBTQ+ friendly destinations. There are certain destinations, like Jamaica, that are simply not as safe for LGBTQ+travelers. Instead of sharing the destinations that they could not visit safely, I chose to focus on the ones that are LGBTQ+ friendly. I already knew what this client wanted to experience during their family vacation. So, I gave them a few destinations that offered what they wanted. This allowed them to make a final decision before I planned the remainder of their travel. Once I knew their destination, I was able to find autism-friendly accommodations.
Depending on the destination, I can usually choose from autism-certified resorts, autism-friendly hotels, and vacation rental homes. If I choose a resort or a hotel for a client, I work with the staff to book a room in a quieter area. Autism-certified resorts are typically the best choice when available. The reason for this is they are better at juggling the intersections of an LGBTQ+ autistic family. The staff is already trained to be accepting of all guests and recognize when help is needed. Part of the planning process for autism travel itineraries is making restaurant reservations.
When I am making those reservations, I always ask for my clients to be seated in a quiet area whenever possible. I also tell my clients to request this type of seating for those meals they eat out on their own. As for activities, I planned those like I would for any other client. I kept their support needs in mind when booking each activity. While LGBTQ+ could potentially be a concern for some activities, this normally isn’t the case in LGBTQ+ friendly destinations. However, I did do a little extra research to ensure no issues would arise as this family was enjoying their time away from home. Speaking with this client has only reminded me of how important it is to make sure that every client is sharing their wants, support needs, and additional information with me before I plan their vacation. Being aware of what my clients need is the best way to ensure I plan a vacation for them in a safe area while making sure they have an amazing time.
Do you need to conquer the intersection of autism and LGBTQ+ travel? Contact me today and see how I can help.