Airbnb is making quick use of the travel accessibility startup it bought a few months ago. The rental service has introduced 21 filters that help you find disability-friendly listings that meet your exact needs. You can look for ramps, wide hallways, roll-in showers and other features that can help if you use a wheelchair or otherwise have special mobility requirements. Previously, Airbnb had a simple "wheelchair accessible" filter that frequently left glaring omissions.
It's one of a "series of steps" Airbnb is taking to make travel more accessible, including plans to "improve and expand the filters" over time. It's working with groups such as the National Council on Independent Living and the California Council of the Blind.
The travel news is coming hot on the heels of lawsuits against Lyft and Uber over a lack of accessibility options for their rides, and underscores a recurring problem in the tech industry at large: a tendency to overlook the needs of those outside its own demographic. Airbnb is acknowledging that travelers sometimes need special accommodations, and that they shouldn't have to rely on a hotel to ensure a pleasant stay.