How to Ride with a Disability

All standard NICE buses contain features and equipment that allow disabled riders to board, ride, and get out of vehicles easily and comfortably.

Buses Feature:

  • The capability to "kneel," or tilt themselves closer to the curb
  • Ramps that fold out to make a bridge between the bus and the curb
  • Areas where wheelchairs can be secured
  • Priority seating areas

Steps for Riding the Bus when Disabled

  • Wait for the bus an official NICE bus stop. Please arrive about 5 minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive.
  • The bus driver will pull close to the curb. When the doors of the bus open at each stop, a recording will announce the route number and destination of the bus.
  • Get on board. You can ask the bus driver to "kneel" or tilt the bus. If you would like to use a ramp to help you get on board, ask the bus driver to put down the ramp for you.
  • Pay your fare. As a disabled rider, you may qualify for reduced or free fares. Visit the MTA's Reduced-Fares page here for more details.
  • If you are not in a wheelchair, take a seat in the priority seating area in the front of the bus. For more information on priority seating, read the section about it below.
  • If you are in a wheelchair, the bus driver will strap your wheelchair to the walls to prevent it from moving when the bus is in motion. Seats in the front of the bus behind the driver will fold up to make room for this strap-in area. The bus driver will assist you before other passengers can get on board.
  • You may wish to tell the driver your destination so you can be sure to get to where you're going without any problems. An automated recording will announce stops and transfer points.
  • As the bus is approaching your desired stop, pull on the pull cord.
  • Exit the bus. The bus driver will pull close to the curb. Just as when you got on board, the bus driver will "kneel" or tilt the bus and will put down the ramp for you if necessary. If you need help getting out of the bus, please let the bus driver know.

Priority Seating Areas

NICE buses contain an area near the front of the vehicle that is marked as priority seating for senior citizens, pregnant women, and disabled riders. If you are one of these types of riders, you have priority over other passengers to sit in this area.

If all the seats in the priority seating area are taken, ask a non-disabled passenger to offer you a seat or ask the bus driver to make the request for you. Keep in mind, however, that bus drivers can only ask a non-disabled passenger to move from a seat. They cannot force anyone to give up a seat. The reason for this policy is because a passenger may actually have a disability that's not visible, and asking anyone to prove a disability would violate their privacy.

NICE asks that any of our passengers who are not disabled, especially those in a priority seating area, to please be courteous and offer their seat to a disabled rider who might need it.

Features on Vehicles for Specific Types of Disabled Riders

  • On buses, the capability to “kneel,” or tilt the bus closer to the curb
  • On buses, ramps that fold out to make a bridge between the bus and the curb
  • Priority seating areas

Features for the visually impaired

  • Automatic announcements of bus stops
  • Permission to bring service animals on board

Reasonable Accommodations:


NICE Bus/Able-Ride Reasonable Modification/Accommodation Policy

The Federal Department of Transportation (DOT) has recently revised the rules for the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The revised rules provide for public transit organizations to make reasonable modifications and accommodations to policies, practices, and procedures to avoid discrimination, and to ensure accessibility to individuals with disabilities.

Individuals with disabilities may request that NICE Bus/Able-Ride make a reasonable accommodation in order for that individual to fully use transit services. All requests should be made in advance by filling out and submitting a Reasonable Accommodation Request form to NICE Bus/Able-Ride. Please see information below to obtain and file a request.

NICE Bus/Able-Ride will accommodate requests provided that:

There are several ways to obtain and submit a Reasonable Modification/Accommodation request form. Download the form here (PDF).

Send an email to our reasonable requests coordinator at or by calling 516.296.4156

  • Fundamental nature of the service, program or activity is not altered, or
  • It does not cause a direct threat to the health or safety of others, or
  • It does not result in an undue financial and administrative burden, or
  • The requestor would not be able to fully use the service provided by NICE Bus/Able-Ride without the modification

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