I nearly jumped for joy — well, I would've if I could've — when I saw a new TV commercial for the Expedia travel company the other day. It shows a woman in winter who's obviously had enough of the cold, ice, and snow. She is desperate to escape to warmer climes — and needs to take her wheelchair with her. Been there, done that? I have, but I'd never seen an internet travel company reach out to people with mobility problems, like those of us who have multiple sclerosis. The 30-second commercial gave me hope that a major travel company might actually understand our needs. Expedia has partnered in this effort with Wheel the World, a company I'd never heard of before the ad. It specializes in accessible travel, and with this partnership, Expedia provides its users access to a database of hotel rooms that can be searched according to accessibility needs and preferences. Sure, the commercial was a business decision, but it seems that tapping into this special needs market is good business. Expedia isn't the first company to do this. Several years ago, I wrote a column about some humorous ads for Maltesers candy that featured people with disabilities. Although the links from my column to those ads have expired, I found another one. It'll probably give you a chuckle. Guinness had a commercial that focused on wheelchair basketball. While these two were great, when was the last time you saw a similar ad featuring someone with a disability? The exception, not the rule. Except for someone in a wheelchair scooting by in the background, TV ads showing someone with a disability are rare. In 2021, the TV ratings company Nielsen reviewed nearly 450,000 prime-time broadcast and cable TV ads. Just 1% showed disability-related themes, visuals, or topics. Yet according to the World Health Organization, 1.3 billion people in the world live with a significant disability. The Nielsen report calls excluding disabled people from ads a "missed opportunity" and says that failing to "incorporate people with disabilities into everyday brand messaging could be costly." I agree. Expedia obviously gets it. Not only has it included us in its ad, it's also making the service it sells more useful to us. I continue to travel, both domestically and internationally, and sometimes with my entire family, even though I use an electric scooter. The next time I book a trip, I'm going to check out Expedia and Wheel the World. I wonder why more companies don't make this type of effort to reach into our 1.3 billion wallets. Don't you wonder, too? You're invited to visit my personal blog at www.themswire.com. Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.