Wheelchair Accessible Vans – Should You Rent Or Own One?

Before wheelchair accessible vans became available to the general public, handicapped people were forced to stay home. They could not drive themselves to school or work and had to rely on family members and friends to help them into car seats. It was in the 1970s when technological advances allowed car makers to design vehicles for the handicapped. Because of this, disabled individuals gained the capability to be completely mobile, allowing them to be gainfully employed or go to school.

Wheelchair accessible vans are specially modified vans that allow disabled individuals to act as drivers or passengers. Handicapped drivers use special controls installed in the driver’s seat area that allow them to drive themselves and even their friends to different places. Floor rails secure the wheelchair in place. Brakes and gas pedals are placed in the steering wheel area and are controlled by hand.

Buying a Wheelchair Accessible Van

If you are physically handicapped and use a wheelchair, you may have considered buying a wheelchair accessible van. Owning one is an advantage because you will no longer have to ask someone to drive you around. The biggest stumbling block in buying a new van is the price. The price of a new wheelchair accessible van is anywhere from $45,000 to $80,000 depending on the mobility conversion work done on the vehicle. Accessibility conversions are often done on mini vans for personal use because they are easier to operate and drive in metropolitan areas.

Most people who use these vans cannot afford to buy a new one. To make the vans more affordable, mobility conversion manufacturers purchase slightly used mini vans from car rental agencies and place a new conversion on the vehicle.

Several types of wheelchair conversions are available today. Some conversions use a side entry while others use rear entry. Ramps or lifts may also be used. Different seating options are available for greater flexibility. With used wheelchair accessible vans, users have a more affordable option and can possibly save thousands of dollars.

Renting a Wheelchair Accessible Van

If you need a wheelchair van only occasionally, you may find it more cost-effective to rent instead of buy one. You may need a van only for the weekend or to run errands once a week. Wheelchair van rentals are very affordable, with rental rates close to car rental prices.

The decision to buy or rent a wheel chair accessible van depends on a number of factors. You have to consider the price and how often you will use the vehicle. Depending on your circumstances, you will be able to decide whether you should buy or rent a van.

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