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Special Needs at Sea works with Crystal to provide mobility services for thousands of travelers aboard their handicap accessible cruises each year!

Crystal Cruises aims to provide travelers with the finest experience in all of luxury travel. Best known for its signature features like onboard sushi bars, extensive wine cellars and complimentary language classes, Crystal Cruises is like no other line. In 2009, Crystal was voted the “Best Large-Ship Cruise Line” by Conde Naste Traveler magazine for the 16th straight year. 

Crystal Cruises has two ships in her fleet, the Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity. Both ships were designed for handicap accessible cruises for the physically challenged, with ramp access to most decks and public areas. The Crystal Serenity is the larger of the two ships with 535 staterooms, eight of which are wheelchair accessible handicap cabins. Two of the handicap cabins are Penthouses, two have verandahs and four have large picture windows. The Crystal Symphony is slightly smaller with 461 total staterooms, four of which are handicap cruise cabins. Two of the handicap cabins are Penthouses and two have large picture windows. Handicap cabins have 32” entry doorways to both the room and bathroom. The bathrooms have a roll-in shower, grab bars, lowered sink and vanity, fold-down shower stool, hand-held showerhead, a ramped threshold and toilet seat risers upon request. The handicap cabins also have accessible closet rods and shelves.   

The ship itself is quite accessible with features including accessible gaming and accessible showroom seating. Additionally, many of Crystal cruise line’s shore excursions are wheelchair accessible and guests with disabilities should check with the Land Program department to schedule an excursion. Guests must bring their own wheelchair or scooter or must rent one through a company such as Special Needs Group as wheelchairs are only provided onboard for emergencies and for embarkation/disembarkation. 

Oxygen-dependent guests are limited to handicap accessible cruises on which they can be properly supported by equipment vendors and which have itineraries that will easily allow medical disembarkation if it should be required. Portable oxygen tanks and concentrators may be used on board. Guests must bring their own oxygen equipment or rent through a company such as Special Needs Group. Crystal Cruises also requires oxygen-dependent guests to travel with a companion who is also completely familiar with the operation of the equipment. 

For guests with hearing impairments, Crystal cruise line provides closed-captioned televisions in their handicap accessible cabins. Also available upon request in the handicap rooms on these cruise ships are portable room kits that include alerts for door knocking, telephone ringing, smoke detector and alarm kit. And a TTY Text Telephone is available upon request in the stateroom. For guests with visual impairments, these handicap accessible cruises are equipped with accessible elevators. Features available upon request include a service animal relief area and a cabin steward to orient the guest to cabin facilities. All guests with disabilities may request Crystal Cruise priority check-in, boarding, and disembarkation.

Guests with any disability must notify Crystal Cruises at the time of booking as they may be required to submit forms for Release and Indemnity directly to Onboard Guest Services. Forms must be submitted to Onboard Guest Services at least two (2) weeks prior to sailing and at least 30 days before sailing if it is for a guest who is oxygen dependent or traveling with a service animal. Guest with disabilities should also fill out and return the emergency assistance card which comes with the ticketing information packet.

Crystal Cruises does not provide wheelchairs or scooters for their guests. For wheelchair rentals, scooter rentals or other special needs equipment rentals, contact Special Needs Group at (800) 513-4515. To learn more about both handicap friendly cruises, email Crystal’s Onboard Guest Services Department at

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