Are you excluding or embracing your attendees? How mobile app platforms boost accessibility at your live events

How accessible could your live events be with the right tech in place? Read on to find out how mobile app platforms enhance the experience for everyone.
Adam Catterall
May 2024

Research by RiDC found that half of disabled consumers face issues at live events. Considering that 24% of the total population live with a disability, that’s a significant group of people struggling to enjoy a mesmerising night at a concert, or a high-octane day out at a sporting event.

You’ve got a responsibility under the Equality Act 2010 to ensure people with disabilities can access your events. But, there are benefits for you too. Disabled attendees are a top spending group—according to VisitBritain, the average spend per inbound visit to England was £660 for all trips, compared to £740 for trips taken by those with an impairment and their travelling companions.

So what can you do to ensure accessibility for all? Start by listening to your attendees.

Understanding accessibility challenges at live events

First and foremost, you need to understand the accessibility challenges facing your attendees. Disabilities can be both visible and invisible, so it’s important not to assume, and to constantly strive to meet different requirements. At your live events, you should consider how you can tailor your experience for people with:

  • Mobility issues. Do you have things in place to support wheelchair users, such as ramps and sign-posted accessible areas? Mobility issues affect disabled attendees right from the moment they park their car at your venue, so consider their whole journey with you.
  • Visual impairments. Is information available in a format that is accessible to visually impaired people? Does your signage use easy-to-read fonts and colours? 
  • Neurodivergence. Autism, ADHD and other neurological conditions affect the way a person engages with an event and the level of sensory stimulation they are comfortable with. Do you offer quiet areas? How do you communicate schedule changes? 

These disabilities affect the experience right from the first touchpoint—from using ticketing websites to finding disabled parking, access to the venue, and enjoying the show. 

So, where do you start with your improvements? 

How mobile technology can help

Using a mobile app platform gives your attendees a centralised companion app for your event. This means you have a direct channel of communication, the perfect stage for circulating your accessibility features and information.

Let’s explore some of the features that a mobile app brings to your accessibility efforts.

Improving communication with disabled attendees

In the RiDC survey mentioned earlier, respondents cited a lack of information and communication around accessibility as one of the main problems that held them back from enjoying live events. 43% said they weren’t given clear information about access at the venue, making them feel hesitant to book.

Having accessibility measures in place—such as priority queues and wheelchair lifts—is a strong step in the right direction, but if you're not communicating these features to your attendees, they can’t make use of them.

Mobile app platforms help your guests access your in-venue facilities in two key ways:

  • Centralising your information on the home screen. Content cards on your mobile app’s home screen keep your guests up to date with crucial information. This is the perfect place to house the details of your accessibility features.
  • Push notifications and Bluetooth beacons. In-app notifications send information directly to your attendees’ phones. If you have a priority queue for disabled attendees, you can shoot a quick notification to guests as they park up. You can do this by triggering strategically placed Bluetooth beacons around your venue, firing the information over once attendees are in the right spot.

Interactive wayfinding that adapts to attendees' needs

If you operate a large venue, chances are you have some sort of digital map available. These web-based or PDF maps are rarely interactive, meaning they won’t solve potential problems for attendees with accessibility requirements.

An in-app digital map with interactive wayfinding helps attendees find the quickest and most suitable route to their destination and even allows them to filter routes depending on their needs, such as avoiding uneven terrain. You can also flag facilities on your map that are relevant to disabled attendees, such as disabled bathrooms, wheelchair hires, and disabled parking spots.

Multi-lingual and page visibility support

If your event is likely to attract international attendees, you’ll have different accessibility challenges to contend with. Offering multi-lingual support ensures that all the content you’re sending to your attendees is accessible to all. The platform allows you to offer your app in any language, and can even be configured to update automatically based on the user’s device language.

Even if everyone can understand your content though, you may still run into some reading issues if your attendees have partial or full blindness. Mobile app platforms tackle this by offering:

  • Text options. Allowing your attendees to enlarge text and change fonts can help partially sighted users easily read content.
  • Colour options. Offering the option to switch up the colour scheme helps users with colour blindness see everything on the screen clearly.
  • Screen readers. These tools read out the content on the screen to the user, including messages, notifications and app interfaces.

Live events for all

Smashing through accessibility barriers all comes down to listening to your guests—understand their needs and gather as much feedback as you can from attendees throughout their experience.

The platform not only enables you to provide your guests with a powerful companion app that enhances their experience regardless of their ability, but it also gives you, as the organiser, the opportunity to collect on-the-pulse feedback. With this digital collection method, you’ll equip yourself with the insights to continue improving your event experience for all attendees. Get in touch today to find out how the platform can transform your event experience.

Adam Catterall

Roller coaster buff and black belt content writer
May 2024
Book a demo mobile app

Request a Demo

Find out how attractions of all shapes and sizes are deploying mobile apps to improve the guest experience, increase revenue and unlock visitor insights.

Be a part of the digital revolution.

Technology is rapidly changing guests' expectations. In our monthly newsletter, we explore the trends and technologies set to shape the future of the experience industry. Subscribe for expert insights and tips.
By attractions enthusiasts for attractions enthusiasts.
Related News & Resources
View all