Essay – Wheelchair User Transportation Accessibility in Netherlands

The degree to which a space’s physical infrastructure enables people to carry out activities that require space is what defines accessibility (Geurs & van Wee, et al 2013). The availability and effectiveness of infrastructure and transportation networks determine whether it is possible to access specific locations. This aspect is crucial for people to help them mobilize for certain purposes such as going to work, hospital, shop, and sort of. The accessibility of public transportation by wheelchair users should be unrestricted and on their own. This was already clear from Dutch equal treatment laws and the 2016-ratified UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (NIHR, et al 2017).  

However, this is still a big issue since the implementation is not completely perfect in every sector.  One of the biggest bottlenecks is the automatic wheelchair ramp, which frequently has problems. It is a major factor in why wheelchair users are occasionally left behind at the bus stop. Wheelchair users claim that the help provided by the bus driver whether boarding, sitting down, or exiting the bus is not always sufficient. Although the bus is frequently handicapped-accessible, the wheelchair placement does not always accommodate wheelchair users’ preferences.

Despite this, wheelchair users often have nice things to say about taking the bus. There are hints that people who use wheelchairs are reluctant to take buses. To eliminate this resistance, it is the duty of contracting authorities, transportation providers, and wheelchair users themselves (NIHR, et al 2017). Although there are pros and cons regarding the facility for disabled people in the Netherlands, it is still growing for the better. The majority of care facilities and services for the disabled are funded through public health insurance, through the Exceptional Medical Expenses Act (AWBZ), which provides entitlement to expensive long-term health care (Angloinfo, et al 2019). Care, support and treatment are provided to people with mental disability, psychological problems, epilepsy and those with non-congenital brain damage.


Angloinfo. (2019). Notes for the Disabled in the Netherlands. Retrieved from

Karst Geurs, B. v. (2013). Accessibility evaluation of land-use and transport strategies: Review and research directions. Journal of Transport Geography.

Rights, N. I. (2017). Accessibility on the bus?


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