Trouble getting into and out of a car?
Read our tips for making getting in and out of a car easier.
- You may simply need to change how you sit and stand to get in - see below.
- You may need to think about specialised equipment or a wheelchair-accessible vehicle (WAVs).
- If you need a car with higher seats or wider door openings, see our car search.
Techniques for getting in and out of a car
Sitting and standing
If you’re standing outside the car, try using the sit and swivel method of sitting down.
Sit first, then swivel your legs into the car. Do this the other way round to help you stand.
If you need a little more help, there are fairly simple accessories you can buy to hold onto when you sit or stand, like a strap to pull on, a bar to push against, or a leg lifter.
From a wheelchair:
Transfer to and from a car
If you can’t stand and sit, as above, you could look at trying new ways to transfer to and from your car.
Your arms may not be strong enough to do this.
A transfer board could be the answer. They come in many models, from quite cheap to more expensive sliding or folding boards.
When you need more help getting in and out of a car, you have three options:
- swivel seats. You may need someone to give you a hand stowing your wheelchair with this option. You’ll need another person with you for the next three
- hoists (sling-style person lifts)
- wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs) - by far the most expensive option
When you choose specialist equipment, think about how much you can afford, what your future needs may be, and whether you’ll have someone around who’ll be strong enough to help you.
Always try out equipment before you buy.
A new or a different car?
There are many different makes and models of cars which are easier to get in and out of, including cars with boots big enough to take a wheelchair.
Remember, don’t get pressured into buying what you don’t want or need, or can’t afford. And if you’re sold equipment that’s faulty or broken, find out if you can claim a refund, repair or replacement.