1.0 Overview

As seen in the Section 2.5 the shortest or fastest route is not always a priority for vision impaired people. They often care more about getting to their destination by the safest and most accessible route. There are however differences in priorities for cane users and guide dog users. Taking this principle into account, vision impaired people should be guided into a venue via the most accessible route in relation to their previous location. For example, when a vision impaired person is getting off the bus in order to go into a railway or metro station, the closest or the main entrance is not necessarily the most accessible option. Similarly, when leaving a venue, they should be guided through the most accessible route based on where they want to go next.

1.1 Announcing orientation after entering or exiting a venue

Inform vision impaired people about their position when they have entered or left a venue so that they make sense of the area around them. For example:

Welcome to Central Station. You are now on the main concourse. For your train, walk forward to the ticket barriers.
You have exited from Central station. You are now on the east side of Alpha High Street facing north towards the City Hall.

1.2 Allowing users to choose entrance or exit

Venues have different types of entrances and exits, which may be close to escalators, lifts, stairs, and ramps or similar. Which option a vision impaired person chooses will depend on a variety of factors – their destination point, confidence, mobility aid (guide dog users may prefer not to use some escalators), familiarity with the route etc. This guideline therefore is targeted at digital navigation services to allow vision impaired people to choose how they enter and exit a venue based on their personal preferences.

1.3 Informing users about door type

There are different types of doors ranging from automatic sliding doors and revolving doors through to push doors and the like. When a vision impaired person is approaching an entrance or an exit with doors, inform them about the type of doors so that they are ready to take the necessary action in order to go through the door. For example:

Proceed through the automatic door in front of you. It will open towards you.
Proceed through the door in front of you. The door is a push door.

1.4 Announcing location of door opening button

As with Lifts (see Section, some doors require users to press a button in order to go through the door. In such cases it is imperative to inform vision impaired people about the location of the button. Vision impaired people are likely to locate the door first and then wall-trail with their hands in order to locate the button. For example:

Go through the door in front of you. To open the door, press the exit button on the wall to the left of the door. The button is at waist height

Suggestions for further investigation

The following paragraphs are not guidelines but suggested areas for future investigation through user research.

s1.1 Revolving doors: announcing location of an accessible door

If the main door is a revolving door inform vision impaired people where to locate the accessible door. A revolving door can be difficult or impossible for vision impaired people to negotiate, particularly those with guide dogs.