Our Boats Are Accessible To Everyone
We work hard to ensure that everyone on Chicago’s First Lady Cruises is able to access the beauty of our boats and enjoy a wonderful experience aboard. Below you’ll discover the easiest ways to board, and don’t forget—we can make your experience much more pleasant if you give us advance notice for any special boarding needs. Our crew is happy to help when you arrive to the dock level.
Guests with Limited Mobility – What to Expect Onboard
- Chicago's Leading Lady & Chicago's Classic Lady are wheelchair-accessible and offer a wheelchair-accessible family restroom.
- Tickets for tours on this ship can be purchased by selecting the 9am, 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm or 5pm departure times.
- For safety reasons, motorized scooters and electric wheelchairs cannot be accommodated aboard the ship. Guests who are able to transfer may use the company's manual wheelchair (based upon availability). Our dockside staff will monitor wheelchairs and scooters left at the dock during a tour.
- Please allow extra time to locate our dock as tickets are date and time specific.
- For those requesting use of the company's manual wheelchair, please visit the ticket office first upon arrival.
- When boarding the ship, guests cross two ramps and enter through an opening (doorway) that is 36 inches wide. Crew members will assist you in guiding the wheelchair across the gangway.
- Guests who are unable to climb stairs to the upper deck may choose to sit on the open-air bow deck of the vessel or the climate-controlled enclosed salon with large windows.
- Staff members will gladly take table-side drink orders for passengers with limited mobility.
Under Federal law and due to special marine safety construction guidelines, USCG-regulated small vessels are not subject to land-based architectural configuration requirements. Although we do our best to accommodate those with special mobility needs consistent with our vessel capabilities, staffing and the docking space (which is publicly owned and controlled), we can do a better job with advance notice.
Accessing the Dock Area via Ramp
Our boats board at the Riverwalk level, located down a two-level staircase, at the southeast corner of the Michigan Avenue Bridge at Wacker Drive. For guests on foot who are unable to use stairs, there are two ramps available to access the Riverwalk:
- Ramp at Wacker Drive & Wabash Avenue: Once at Riverwalk level, proceed east and you will find our ticket office marked with blue awnings just beyond the Michigan Avenue Bridge underpass.
- Ramp at Wacker Drive & State Street: This ramp is ADA-compliant. Once at Riverwalk level, proceed east 2 blocks until you see our blue ticket office awnings just past the Michigan Avenue Bridge underpass.
About the Mobility Access Drop-Off Area
The drop-off area is on the same level as our dock. See directions below to access drop-off area. After dropping off your passenger, you have two options for parking:
- Metered Parking: Located on Lower Lower Wacker Drive (steps from the drop-off area) and payable with a credit card.
- Discounted Parking at LAZ Garage (111 E. Wacker Drive): Garage entrance accessible via Upper Wacker Drive.
Please note, guests arriving by taxi will want to prearrange pick-up because no taxis are waiting on the lower lower level.