Seeing your way around trams and trains
People who are blind or who have vision impairments tell some of their stories of using public transport. Sometimes the loudspeaker announcements on trains tell these people the wrong station. Sometimes drivers forget to tell these people the right tram stops. Some blind users think that drivers should know their tram and bus routes. Users might try to complain but it doesn't work. Drivers need to learn how to deal with blind people.
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Posted by: Graeme Turner, on 12/04/13
Four taxis and a wedding
My friends were getting married in Melbourne and my girlfriend and I were invited. The wedding was great but we had many problems with multipurpose taxis. The first didn't come. The second was late. But the third was the worst. The driver took us to the wrong house which was another bridal couple's barbecue. It was like suddenly being taken to another world. The people were friendly but not my friends. After getting to the right barbecue, at the end of the night the taxi agency didn't want to pick us up. It was a strange day which I can now laugh about.
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Posted by: Gary Barling, on 13/07/12
Being able to fly alone is important for me. I use a walking frame and get tired easily. It is easier for me to use a wheelchair at airports. When I fly I get help getting on and off the plane. I also need to use oxygen on the plane and this can cost a lot. I chose to fly with Qantas and British Airways when I visited my parents in Israel this year. British Airways do not charge for oxygen. Qantas charges $700 to use their oxygen tanks. On this trip I was happy to have a good flight.
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Posted by: Tully Zygier, on 12/07/12
Next station is
Train travel is often the best way for me to get around Melbourne. With practice I am becoming more confident travelling further from home. Using an electric wheelchair means I am noticed in the crowd. Some people on public transport think it's okay to talk to me and offer advice because I use a wheelchair. I have had people quote words from the Bible. Others think they can use the bar at the back of my wheelchair to rest on. I don't mind when children ask me questions. Sometimes I have interesting conversations. But I usually like to be left alone.
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Posted by: Nicole Smith, on 04/07/12
Pushing buttons and the Smart Bus
Being blind, I often use public transport. The bus driver always has to tell me when I have arrived at my bus stop. But recently I caught a Smart Bus. A recorded announcement told me the bus number. I could sit, relax and talk to a girl next to me. Each bus stop was announced. I was excited. I could be independent. I waited to press the button for my stop. It was a special moment. I pressed the button, the bus stopped and I thanked the driver. And I say a thank you to everyone involved in the Smart Bus.
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Posted by: Christine Casey, on 17/04/12