Navigate Air and Space with Aira - a free app that connects you with sighted agents who provide visual descriptions on-demand. This subscription service is free when visiting the Smithsonian and connected to our wi-fi. Learn more and download the app.
Visitors with Disabilities
We are committed to providing inclusive experiences for all audiences, and we are pleased to offer the following:
Parking and Entrances: There are seven National Park Service designated accessible parking spaces located on Jefferson Drive across from the Museum.
Visitors with disability hang tags or license plates can park for free at metered spaces controlled by the DC government along Independence Avenue, SW. Check the DC government website for any changes to their parking procedures.
The following map depicts accessible entrances, curb cuts, designated parking, and more for Smithsonian facilities on the National Mall.
Exterior Access Ramps: Currently, the Museum has two wheelchair accessible ramps. The wheelchair accessible ramp on the west side of the Jefferson Drive (National Mall) side of the Museum is located west of the entrance, between the entrance and 7th Street.
The wheelchair accessible ramp on the Independence Avenue SW side of the Museum is located east of the entrance, between the entrance and 4th street. This ramp allows visitors to access both the Museum entrance on Independence Avenue and the Phoebe Waterman Haas Public Observatory.
Wheelchairs: A limited number of standard wheelchairs are available for free to use while visiting the Museum. Please visit the Security Desk at the Independence Avenue entrance to inquire about availability. Wheelchairs are provided on a first come, first served basis with a valid ID.
Service Animals: Service animals or service animals-in-training are welcome in the Museum.
Restrooms: All restrooms in the Museum are accessible. There are two family/companion care restrooms inside our Food Court entrance.
Braille and Tactile Guides: Guides are available at the Southwest Airlines Welcome Center at the the Independence Avenue entrance of the Museum.
Pre-Visit Materials: Tip sheets and social stories designed to help people with cognitive and sensory processing disabilities enjoy their visit to the Museum are also available.
Shopping & Dining: All Museum stores, dining facilities, and water fountains are accessible.
Tours and Public Programs
Advance reservations are not required for self-guided visits or to participate in any of our walk-in programs. Many of our tour guides are trained to give tours to children and adults with various disabilities.
Two-week advanced notice is requested to reserve an individual program or accessibility services. When requesting an accessibility service, please specify the mode of communication required (e.g., for sign language: ASL, PSE, or Signed English).
- For visitors who are blind or have low vision, we offer audio-described, docent-led tours, and discovery stations with models and tactile components.
- Sign language interpreters can be made available for tours, public programs, or evening lectures with advance notice.
To reserve a tour or for more information contact the National Air and Space Museum's Reservation Office from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
Central Smithsonian Accessibility Office
Information for those who wish to visit other Smithsonian museums is available through the Central Smithsonian Accessibility Office.
The Lockheed Martin IMAX Theater features designated seating for visitors using wheelchairs and their companions and provides audio descriptions and/or rear window captioning for most theater shows.
The Albert Einstein Planetarium features designated seating for visitors using wheelchairs and their companions. Open captioning is available for the feature presentation. The assistive listening system also has channels for audio description and simultaneous translation into French, German, Japanese, and Spanish.
Our exhibitions are accessible to a broad range of visitors. Examples include tactile models and materials, audio labels, open captioning on videos, and wheelchair accessible interactive exhibits. Visit the Southwest Airlines Welcome Center for information on accessible exhibits throughout the Museum.
For Families: Morning at the Museum
On select dates, families are invited to visit a Smithsonian museum before the public opening for a special experience. To register for Morning at the Museum or to request information, email email@example.com.
Morning at the Museum is a project of the Smithsonian Institution's Accessibility Program and the Smithsonian Museums. Guided by a Community Advisory Committee comprised of museum educators, exhibit designers, professionals who work with children with cognitive or sensory processing disabilities, parents, and self-advocates, the Smithsonian has developed pre-visit materials for families.