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Which countries are best for Persons with Disabilities and why?

By, The Say Foundation Team

As a person with a disability, you want to live in a place that will make your life easier. You want to be able to get around easily, have access to healthcare and public transportation, and feel like you can be yourself.

But which countries are best for persons with disabilities? In this article, we'll take a look at the top 5 countries for persons with disabilities and why they're so great.

1. Portugal

Portugal is a wonderful country. It has many stunning places to visit, great food and wine, and friendly people.

The country has a rich history and culture, which is reflected in its architecture, art, language and cuisine. Portugal is one of the oldest countries in Europe, having been colonized by the Romans since the first century BC.

Portugal is also known for its beautiful beaches and coastlines that stretch along its Atlantic coast.

Why it is a great country for persons with disabilities?

Portugal has made significant strides in recent years to become a more inclusive and accessible country for persons with disabilities. From public transportation to accommodations and dining, here are some of the reasons why Portugal is a great place to call home:

  • Public Transportation: Metro and many public buses are wheelchair-accessible, making it easy to get around the city. However, most taxis lack ramps for motorized wheelchairs, although they're great for foldable wheelchairs.

  • Accommodation: Many of Portugal's hotels are accessible, including ground-floor alternatives, ramps, accessible swimming pools, lower mattresses, and bedside lighting. This makes it easy to find a comfortable place to stay no matter your needs.

  • Restaurants: While many restaurants in Portugal are still working on accessibility, dining al fresco means avoiding stairs and small interiors. Plus, Portuguese cuisine is delicious – you won't want to miss out!

2. Brazil

Brazil is the largest country in South America and one of the most diverse countries in the world. It has a population of over 200 million people, which makes it the fifth most populous country in the world. 

The country is divided into 26 states, which are further divided into 5,570 municipalities. It also boasts a rich history, with many ancient civilizations such as the Mayans and Incas having made their home there hundreds of years ago.

Why it is a great country for persons with disabilities?

persons with disabilities often face many difficulties in their daily lives. However, Brazil is a great country for persons with disabilities for a number of reasons.

  • Sidewalks: For starters, big cities like Rio de Janeiro have wheelchair-accessible walkways. This means that people with mobility issues can still get around the city without too much difficulty. Additionally, most curbs in Brazil provide level access. This makes it easier for people in wheelchairs to manoeuvre around the streets. However, parking and deterioration are major difficulties in Brazil.

  • Accommodation: Many hotels provide elevators, ramps, handrails, and shower seat but not all buildings are accessible. Additionally, the subway is only wheelchair-accessible by street elevator – which can be difficult to find and use. Brazil has a lot to offer for persons with disabilities. The country's biggest tourist attractions – such as Iguazu Falls and Christ the Redeemer statue – are typically wheelchair accessible.

3. Australia

Australia is a country with a lot of diversity. It has a lot of people who are from different countries, and it also has a lot of unique natural features.

Why it is a great country for persons with disabilities?

Australia is a great country to live for persons with disabilities for many reasons. 

  • Government’s Effort: The federal, state, and territory governments work collaboratively to help and incorporate disabled people into society. Several initiatives help handicapped people to access jobs, healthcare, education, transit, and housing. Australia works hard to safeguard handicapped people's rights and has lowered numerous job hurdles.

  • Special Pension: Disabled people in Australia are entitled to the Disability Support Pension (DSP). This pension is a financial safety net that helps cover the costs of living for those with a disability. It is available to both Australians who have a permanent disability as well as those who are temporarily unable to work due to their disability.

  • Wheelchair Accessibility: Melbourne has one of Australia's best public transport networks and is very accessible for wheelchair users. Sydney also has wheelchair-accessible bus services and ramps for boarding ferries. Some cities, like Sydney, have accessibility maps that show where to find handicap bathrooms, parking, and public transit. This makes it easier for disabled people to get around and enjoy all that these cities have to offer.

4. United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is a country that is part of the British Isles. It consists of several islands, including Great Britain and Ireland. The UK also has lands on continental Europe and in North America.

Why it is a great country for persons with disabilities?

The United Kingdom is a great country to live for persons with disabilities. 

  • Free Medical Care and Education: NHS provides free medical care to all specially-abled citizens, and the government is currently working on investing £1.6 billion to help persons with disabilities – including a £300 million boost for special education.

  • Wheelchair Accessibility: Nearly all cabs in London have ramps, making it one of the most wheelchair-accessible cities in the world. Other attractions such as the London Eye also have accessibility ramps and elevators. And when it comes to public transit, most places in London are wheelchair-accessible with cobblestone-free walkways. Additionally, at least 5% of hotel rooms are typically reserved for disabled visitors.

5. United States of America

The United States of America is a country that is known for its diversity. From the many different religions to the many different types of people that live in the country, there are many things that make America stand out.

Why it is a great country for persons with disabilities?

There are many reasons why the United States is a great country to live for persons with disabilities. 

  • No Discrimination: The Americans with Disabilities Act outlaws disability discrimination. This act has helped protect Americans with disabilities from discrimination in many areas of life, including employment, education, and access to public places.

  • Several State-Programs for Disabled: There are several programs in place to help disabled people in all aspects of their lives. For example, there are programs that help with transportation, education, and jobs. In addition, nearly all businesses, services, and public transit must be wheelchair accessible under the ADA.

  • Wheelchair Accessible Parks: The United States is also home to many beautiful national parks which include wheelchair-accessible paths and lookouts so that everyone can enjoy them. Permanent residents who are permanently disabled can get a free “America the Beautiful” permit which gives them lifetime access to federal parks and leisure areas.


In conclusion, there are many places that are ideal for persons with disabilities. However, it is important to consider the specific needs of each individual and make sure that they will be able to live comfortably. 

It is also important to consider whether or not there are resources available if something goes wrong with your disability.

Which other countries have you heard of or experienced that are wonderful for PwDs? Write to us: 

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