How It Works

Taking people where they need to go

Registration & Eligibility

Our services at Desert Access & Mobility are available to anyone who:

  • has a disability that makes driving unsafe (permanent or temporary).
  • is at least mobile enough to transfer from a wheelchair into the front seat of a sedan without being lifted.
  • lives in Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Desert Hot Springs, Palm Desert or Rancho Mirage.
  • and, does not need medical care during the ride.

REGISTER yourself or your loved one with Desert Access & Mobility prior to scheduling your ride. You can complete an online application, or print and mail your application to:

Desert Access & Mobiity
471 E Tahquitz Canyon Way, Suite 218
Palm Springs, CA 92262

Make your Reservation for a Ride

To make a reservation for a ride, please call (760) 620-5553 and leave a message with the following information:

  • Your name
  • Your phone number
  • The date and time of your appointment
  • The address of your destination; or at least the name of the store/clinic/doctor
  • An estimate of how long until your return​

How to Schedule

At Desert Access, our dispatcher checks the messages frequently throughout the day. He/She compiles a list of requests as far as two weeks in advance. Because the local need for our service is far greater than what we can fully accommodate, we must prioritize rides by urgency and impact on health. Some appointments are Life-Sustaining and some are Life-Enhancing. Generally, appointments fit into one of three priority levels:

  1. Employment, or surgery, wound care, dialysis, and other urgent medical needs
  2. Routine medical care, checkups, groceries, and other social service/government appointments
  3. Life enhancing destinations such as senior centers, shopping, grooming, recreation, etc.

The dispatcher must wait for all requests to come in before confirming any rides, which means that Tuesday’s schedule is determined at about 5 pm on Monday evening. The dispatcher cannot reliably confirm your ride before that time because sometimes people receive notice of urgent surgery or care one or two days in advance. We need to wait until the night before to firmly confirm rides.

 However, if we know on Friday morning that we cannot accommodate your ride on Tuesday because the schedule is full of important medical appointments, then we will call you immediately on Friday.​  If we can’t meet your request we will give you as much advanced notice as we have so that you can reschedule or make other transportation arrangements. 

Otherwise, your driver or the dispatcher will call you the evening before your ride to confirm and provide an accurate pickup time.

The Ride

On the day of your scheduled ride, one of our drivers will call you 10-15 minutes before their arrival, so please do not wait in the elements. The driver will meet you at your door and offer an arm or help push your wheelchair. All our drivers are friendly, so feel free to chat. At your destination the driver will offer you a business card with his/her phone number so that if you finish early or late, you can call the driver. The driver will also offer to escort you inside, which you may accept or decline.

The driver will often leave to serve other members while you are at your destination, however he/she will return at the agreed upon time or wait for your call.

If you need help with groceries or packages (less than 30 lbs), the driver will be happy to help carry them for you.

Finally, all rides are FREE, really. We understand that significant disabilities can force a person into a limited financial position. If you feel that you can comfortably give a small donation for the service, please consider a $5 donation each way. Every dollar you donate helps us continue this vital service. If you cannot comfortably afford that, don’t worry, make reservations and use our service anyway. We are honored to be of service to you.

HELP US ACHIEVE OUR MISSION

How You Can Help

Desert Access and Mobility, a 501(c)(3), through the provision of multiple services, empowers the senior blind, low vision, and/or physically disabled population in the west Coachella Valley to develop
and live independently and to their fullest potential for as long as possible.

Desert Access and Mobility, Inc.
a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation
471 E Tahquitz Canyon Way, Suite 218
Palms Springs, CA 92262