In the same week that Google introduced wheelchair accessible public transit routes to Maps, Airbnb is adding its own new set of accessibility features to its popular on-demand home rental platform.
Moving forward, Airbnb users will be able to call on 21 different filters to find travel lodgings suited to their specific mobility needs. The filters allow users to find homes with specific accommodations like step-free entry to rooms, roll-in showers and entryways that are wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair.
Previously, the only accessibility-related filter Airbnb offered was “wheelchair accessible,” which meant travellers with disabilities that didn’t fit into that narrow category had to engage in long messaging chains with hosts to find out if a potential spot was suited to their needs.
According to Airbnb, its new filters are just the first accessibility-related feature it plans to roll out. The company started working on the filters in 2017 when it partnered with the California Council of Blind, California Foundation for Independent Living Centres, and National Council on Independent Living.