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Airbnb improves accessibility search filters for its properties

Airbnb has updated its search filters and accessibility rating process with the goal of making it easier for people with disabilities to find accommodations on its platform, the company announced in a blog post.

Hosts can now submit photos of the accessibility features in their homes, and “a specialist team of Airbnb agents” will review them to determine their suitability for people with disabilities. on his accessibility review pageAirbnb says this team works “with engineers, designers and others across the company,” but doesn’t specifically state whether they’re trained or how qualified they are to recognize accessibility features. It notes that the staff has already reviewed and approved 100,000 accessibility features in 25,000 different homes worldwide, as CEO Brian Chesky noted on Twitter.

Airbnb has also updated its search filters for accessibility features. Some filters, such as those for stepless bedroom access and accessible parking, are now more prominently displayed in the search screen. Airbnb has made filters related to wide entrances a little more specific by adding a specific measure. For example, instead of “wide entrance to bedroom,” Airbnb changed it to “bedroom entrance wider than 32 inches.” As it stands, these 13 filters are still fairly limited.

Airbnb also announced that it is making it easier to find accessible Experiences by improving its 11 accessibility filters to allow guests to find activities near their property that offer features such as sign language, access to accessible bathrooms, take place on a flat surface. and more. Airbnb also requires hosts to provide detailed information about the accessibility measures they are taking, which is then rated on “description quality.” Each Experience listing also clearly shows the accessibility features available.

In 2017, a survey found that Airbnb hosts were more likely to reject guests with disabilities, and in 2018 the company introduced an accessibility update with 21 filters that allow guests to search for homes with wider entrances, accessible bathrooms, and more. The number of filters has since dropped to 13, which is a bit odd. Previous filters, such as ‘wide passage to bed’, ‘toilet at accessible height’ and ‘handheld shower head’ are now missing from the current list. It remains unclear why Airbnb decided to remove items from the list instead of adding more. We contacted Airbnb with a request for comment, but didn’t hear back immediately.

Airbnb began requiring hosts to upload photos of its accessibility features during their stay in 2019, but it was long time for an update.

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