Creating ‘all inclusive’ experiences for the travel and tourism sector
Web accessibility can increase customer satisfaction, generate revenue, improves brand loyalty and can even enhance search engine performance. It’s also a legal requirement under the Equality Act 2010. But how many travel companies recognise this potential? We chose the following selection of the top UK travel websites:
- P&O Cruises
- Premier Inn
- Royal Caribbean International
- Travel Republic.co.uk
- Virgin Holiday Cruises
We assessed them against the W3C’s new Easy Checks, providing a preliminary review of a page’s accessibility. We reviewed the homepage and the subsequent page of our sample websites, considering how to make a booking, or search for something to book.
W3C’s Easy Checks cover the basics of web accessibility
Check that there is a title that adequately and briefly describes the content of the page, and that it distinguishes the page from others.
Every image has appropriate descriptions associated.
There should be headings (e.g. <h1>) for pages with substantial content, and the hierarchy of those headings should indicate how the page is structured.
Text should have a minimum contrast ratio with the background of 4.5 : 1 or 3.5 : 1 for text over 14px bold, or 18px regular.
When you increase the size of text to 200% (through either zoom or text size) text should not get cut-off, overlap, or be wider than the browser view.
Check that you can tab to all the elements, including links, form fields, buttons, and media player controls.
Visible keyboard focus
Check that the focus is clearly visible as you tab through the elements, that is, you can tell which element has focus, e.g., links have a grey outline.
Form controls should be keyboard accessible and properly labelled.
Video and audio should have suitable alternatives, such as transcripts and captions.