Great news for travellers and holidaymakers who have disabilities as Airbnb has released 21 new accessibility filters across the platform, making it easier for disabled guests to find accessible travel accommodation worldwide. Accessibility differs wildly from country to country and there is often not a huge amount of information about how accessible venues are – the new filters on Airbnb are going to change this. Airbnb revolutionised the travel industry when it launched a few years ago and has completely changed how people travel – and now it looks like the company is doing the same for disabled community and opening up accessibility.
The new filters allow Airbnb guests to search for listings with specific features, including step-free entry to rooms, entryways that are wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair, and more. Previously, guests on Airbnb were only able to search for “wheelchair accessible” listings, which did not always meet travellers’ individual needs.
“The introduction of the new accessibility features and filters to all hosts and guests is just the first stage in our journey to improve accessibility at Airbnb,” added Madipalli. “We encourage everyone to use them and send through their feedback.”
Airbnb’s new accessibility features and filters are fairly thorough. It allow guests to search for listings with some or all of the following features, side doorway, well lit path to entrance, flat path to front door when entering the home. If there are wide hallways, at least 36″ (90cm) wide, elevators if needed, and it allows you to contact hosts about the width. In the bedroom, if there is step-free access, a wide doorway, accessible-height bed, and wide clearance to bed. In the bathroom, if there is step-free access, a wide doorway, roll-in shower with chair, bathtub with shower chair, accessible-height toilet, wide clearance to shower and toilet, fixed grab bars for shower and toilet and a handheld shower head. In the common areas, if there is step-free access and wide entryway. In terms of parking, if there is a disabled parking spot, a city-approved parking spot or a parking space at least 8ft (2.4m) wide.
Of course, now that we will have all the information about how accessible every space on Airbnb actually is, the next question is how will Airbnb make every holiday rental accessible?