With Valentine’s Day coming up, you might want to celebrate the occasion with a special day out. Here, Scheme customer Sarah has listed her top ten accessible date ideas – perfect for anyone with mobility requirements.
When you use a wheelchair or have mobility needs, accessibility is a factor in all decisions; from whether the bathrooms have a hoist, to if there are steps leading into a building. When it comes to planning a date, there are a lot of elements to take into consideration and you may often have to get a little creative. However, there are plenty of accessible date options available – some can require a little bit of pre-planning, but others you can be more spontaneous with.
- Attend a live event
This is the kind of date that will take pre-planning, with online research and potentially some phone calls, as lots of accessible tickets for live events need to be booked over the phone. Luckily, some ticket issuers are coming into the twenty-first century and have the option to purchase tickets online, but there are still certain hoops to jump through beforehand. However, a theatre show, a concert, a comedy night or a live sporting event can all make great dates, and many have accessible spots available.
- Get outdoors
You can be spontaneous with this one and head to a local accessible nature trail. Maybe try somewhere new to explore, take photographs and make memories. You might want to take a picnic or even take the dog if you have one (I know ours goes everywhere with us). It costs you nothing and you can connect with nature and with each other.
- Visit an art gallery or museum
There are plenty of galleries and museums with temporary exhibits that may interest you as a couple, so visiting them would make a great date. A trip to an art gallery can be a fun and stimulating way to spend time together.
- See something at the cinema
This is a simple one but a good one, because who doesn’t love seeing the latest film on the big screen? You can hold hands, snuggle up, and enjoy the blockbuster together – maybe with some snacks and drinks as well.
- Go for a day out at the zoo or aquarium
This is always a fun date as many zoos and aquariums are accessible. They are visually appealing, there’s plenty to talk about (I can usually stay at the giraffes area for hours), and there’s often something interactive to watch or take part in. I know that at Colchester Zoo you can feed the elephants and giraffes, which is an incredible experience.
- Enjoy an afternoon tea
My best friends got me and my boyfriend a gift voucher for afternoon tea as a Christmas present and we both thought it was a great idea, as it is something we have wanted to do for a long time but never got around to. It is a cute alternative to a restaurant and something you wouldn’t necessarily do all the time. It also gives you the opportunity to dress up for the occasion, if you are that way inclined, to make it that little bit more special.
- Try some tipples at a winery or brewery
If you like to sample an alcoholic beverage (or two), this could be a great one for you and your partner. You can put your palettes to good use and maybe find a new favourite drink you can both share together.
- Take a class together
Sign up for a class in something you’d both like to try. Have you both wanted to learn to bake? Learn pottery? Do a life drawing class? There are plenty more options, from acting and singing to mixology and crafting. There are even some classes you can do at home, although an in-person class can be particularly fun for some. Plenty of places offer one-off classes, but if you want to you could even sign up for a more regular class, so you have a set date night going forwards.
- Enjoy a big night in
If you’re not up to going out (and trust me, I’m a homebody), why not bring the fun to you by having a games night? Me and my partner Tom are such big fans of board games, and we love playing them together. In fact, we even bought each other games for Christmas and birthdays, and go to a gamess café in Liverpool! If video games are your thing, you could also do that together, too. Even a simple night of cooking together or ordering a takeaway and watching a film can be a fun evening, so long as you’re enjoying the company. It’s a nice change from sitting on the sofa and watching telly, so try to get creative.
- Try something new
Indoor skydiving, indoor skiing, an escape room… there are so many options for all kinds of people, and many of them are accessible, you just have to decide what you want to do. It requires a bit more effort and pre-planning, but experiencing something new together can make a fun, memorable date that you’ll talk about long after Valentine’s Day has come and gone.
And remember, as long as you communicate and your date is accessible, I’m sure it will go amazingly. So whatever you do for Valentine’s Day, I hope this list has helped inspire you to enjoy each other’s company – have a wonderful time.