Accessibility

GENERAL INFORMATION FOR ATTENDEES WITH DISABILITIES

How to Contact SXSW

Contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible with any questions or specific accommodation requests. During the SXSW Conference, information is available at all Information Desks in the Austin Convention Center.

Accessibility Designated Badge & Companion Wristband

Attendees with disabilities who require accommodated seating and/or the assistance of an attendant during SXSW can request an Accessibility Designated Badge by emailing access@sxsw.com or reg@sxsw.com after you purchase your credential online. The Accessibility Designated Badge allows for one Companion Wristband. When picking up Accessibility Designated Badges, go through the Help Desk at SXSW Registration to pick up the Companion Wristband. The following rules apply to the Companion Wristbands:

  • One Companion Wristband per Accessibility Designated Badgeholder.
  • The bearer of the Companion Wristband must be accompanied by the person with an Accessibility Designated Badge. The Companion Wristband does not grant access to any events by itself.
  • All registrants must pick up their own credentials by showing their state-issued photo ID at Registration in the Austin Convention Center.

SXSW Does NOT Provide

  • Devices that are personal or individually prescribed, such as wheelchairs, prescription eyeglasses, or hearing aids.
  • Services of a personal nature, such as assistance in eating, toileting or dressing, or the pushing of wheelchairs. Specific circumstances are detailed below.
  • Connections to soundboards.

Accommodations

Deadlines for making requests are:

  • SXSW EDU: Monday, February 4, 2019
  • Interactive and Film: Friday, February 8, 2019
  • Music: Monday, February 11, 2019

SXSW Hotels

To request an accessible room online with SXSW Housing & Travel, choose your ideal hotel from our list of available hotel rooms and follow the steps to book. When you reach the “special request field” in step 3 of the booking process (where you’ll also enter your payment information), let us know that you require an accessible room and any other additional details about your stay. We’ll pass this information along to the hotel, so they can accommodate your request.

General Accommodations

SXSW allows ADA-recognized service animals trained specifically to assist a person with disabilities at all events. SXSW provides accessible facilities at all outdoor events where there are portable toilets. Any additional accommodations may be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

PATRONS WHO ARE BLIND/VISION IMPAIRED
Patrons and presenters who are blind or have vision impairments should contact us at access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss reasonable accommodations. During normal business hours, SXSW volunteers will be available at the Information Booths to read information to patrons requesting an accommodation.

PATRONS WHO ARE DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING
Patrons and presenters who are deaf or hard of hearing should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss reasonable accommodations and to schedule interpreters for conference events that fall outside of Keynote Presentations, select Featured Speakers, and the Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake, which are already scheduled to be interpreted into American Sign Language.

Interpreters:

  • Presenters. Deaf presenters will be provided interpreters for their own presentations, but accommodation(s) at other SXSW Conference panels and events must be requested.
  • SXSW Conference. SXSW does not provide interpreters to accompany individuals to trade shows, satellite events or parties. We will work to find an agency to provide pre-certified interpreters at no cost to SXSW Conference participants for such events. This free service is dependent on sufficient notice and is subject to availability. Requests for interpreting at these types of events should be emailed to access@sxsw.com.
  • SXSW Film Festival. Interpreting during screening of movies is provided only on a limited basis dependent on filmmaker, venue and sufficient request notice to access@sxsw.com. The Film Festival Pocket Guide designates which movies are closed-captioned or subtitled.
  • SXSW Music Festival. The musical performances at the SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake will be accessible, featuring professional and certified ASL interpreters, but SXSW does NOT provide interpreting at music venues or showcases.
  • Deadline for making ASL Interpretation requests for SXSW EDU is Wednesday, February 27, 2019. The deadline for SXSW is Monday, March 4, 2019.

PATRONS WHO ARE MOBILITY IMPAIRED
Patrons and presenters with mobility impairments should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to discuss and arrange accommodations. Please know that SXSW does not provide push services for presenters or patrons. Attendants are allowed with the Companion Wristband.

Wheelchairs and/or Scooters
Wheelchairs and 3- or 4-wheel electric scooters are allowed and are reasonably accommodated. Users of any other mobility devices should contact access@sxsw.com. Presenters with mobility impairments should contact access@sxsw.com as soon as possible to make appropriate accommodations.

SXSW Outdoor Stage
SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake is a large outdoor venue with natural terrain. Attendance may require covering large distances over grassy, uneven and sometimes muddy ground. The accessible viewing platform is on the eastern side of the venue. The accessible viewing platform is available to patrons who use mobility devices plus one adult companion and/or minor children, as applicable. Information is available on directional signs or from any volunteer.

Transportation

SXSW takes place throughout downtown Austin. Traffic may be congested and parking can be scarce. Patrons should be prepared to travel long distances. Available transportation services include the following:

  • Accessible Van. SXSW will provide an accessible van for attendees who use mobility devices. The van will only be available for pick-ups and drop-offs during scheduled shuttle hours and between established shuttle stops. Attendants wearing a Companion Wristband may accompany mobility-impaired registrants with the Accessibility Designated Badge in the van. To request accessible transportation please speak to any shuttle driver, shuttle staff (identified by shuttle staff t-shirts) located at most shuttle stops or by TEXTING the Customer Service Line: 512-675-0155. Once the request has been received , an accessible vehicle will be dispatched to the location requested. Information about shuttle stops is available at the Information Desks in the Austin Convention Center, on the SXSW transportation services page, or on the SXSW GO App.

  • Taxis. Accessible taxis servicing locations not covered by free SXSW shuttles include:

  • Public Transportation. Public transportation information is available at: http://www.capmetro.org/accessibility.

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