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What to Look for in a Wheelchair Accessible Airbnb

wheelchair accessible airbnb

There are many things to do to make your next stay at an Airbnb more convenient as a wheelchair user. For example, Airbnb has enabled a wide range of new filters in their app to make your search easier than ever. Even so, there are additional things you may want to look for in a wheelchair-accessible Airbnb.

Use Accessible Search Filters

Airbnb has collaborated with the California Council of the Blind, the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers, and the National Council on Independent Living to create and install a myriad of search filters to make it simpler to find a place that fits you or your loved one’s needs. There are 13 filters that can be chosen to refine your search. The filters include things like different parameters, like step-free access to various rooms and areas of the home, entrances wider than 32 inches, accessible parking, or even different mobility aids like grab bars and hoists. 

Search Homes by Category

There is also a feature that allows Airbnb hosts to categorize their homes. This includes categories such as cabins, beach houses, tiny homes, and so much more. Most notably, there is an “Adapted” category that can be helpful for searching; however, this particular way of searching for accessible homes will be limited if the owner of the Airbnb does not add their home to the category.

Airbnb has put out a lot of information in order to help hosts create a space that’s optimal for everyone to use. However, it can’t be expected that every Airbnb host will be able to make every recommendation. Because of this, there are some things to look for beyond what the Airbnb filters and categories can provide.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

Check for Ramps and Wide Entryways

Ramps are most likely included in the filter options for step-free entrances, but you will definitely want to verify by looking at the home’s entrances and walkways. While it is an option to filter out a home with entrances less than 32 inches, this does not mean that all pathways and rooms inside of the house will be wide enough.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

Message the Host

Some homes may be smaller, and may require some modifications to make your stay possible. One easy way to do this is to message the host before booking to see if they might make changes to any furniture blocking the way of a wheelchair getting through. However, if a bathroom is generally too small for a mobility aid, you may want to reconsider choosing that home.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

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Make Sure There Are Enough Electrical Outlets

Another thing to look for that you might not think about is electrical outlets. Some older homes may not have the outlets widely available or accessible. Make sure to use the photos that the hosts provide to verify that everything will be optimal for your stay. Many hosts can provide photos from different angles of each room to make sure that your stay is comfortable.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

Read Past Reviews

A helpful tactic for deciding if a home is accessible or not may be reading the reviews. This will be especially helpful if the home already boats accessible features by showing up in your search based on your filters or by the description. A home that claims to be accessible will often have reviews from other people  who have stayed there to confirm if it truly is accessible.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

Utilize Social Media and Blogs

One practical way to look for a wheelchair accessible Airbnb is to search on other sites like social media groups. Facebook is host to several groups concerning accessible travel. You can also use our own blog to check out our top five Airbnbs that are wheelchair accessible.

The most important thing in any search is communication. Message your host to make sure that everything meets your accessibility needs. You can also make special requests if they are needed. Special requests could include adding tabletop appliances, moving furniture to make rooms or paths accessible, or even putting supplies in an accessible location. Hosts may even have valuable local information, like the best accessible restaurants or places to visit nearby.

wheelchair accessible airbnb

All in all, there are many resources to help you find your next place to stay with Airbnb. And, if you need a wheelchair-accessible rental to make getting to your next Airbnb easier, make sure to check one of our 200+ locations to reserve a  wheelchair-accessible van near you.


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