Disability advocate and TV presenter, Sophie Morgan, is one of the hundreds of hosts who has listed her home on Airbnb's newly-launched Adapted Category.
The online rental platform's new section of its site offers more than 1,000 homes that are accessible for people with disabilities. Each property is guaranteed to have 'verified step-free paths into the home, bedroom and bathroom', as well as additional accessibility features.
Sophie's one-bedroom London apartment is located on the Thames Path with views of Tower Bridge, St Paul's Cathedral, and Canary Wharf. The property, which is available to rent whenever she is away travelling, is listed with photos of the accessibility features, including step-free access to the entrances and a step-free shower.
'I've been a wheelchair user for about 19 years now. The world isn't designed for people with disabilities, but travelling is 100 per cent still worth it,' says Sophie, who is known for being a presenter of the Paralympic Games, leading groundbreaking documentaries such as Dispatches, fronting her own Channel 4 series Living Wild: How To Change Your Life, and joining ITV's Loose Women as a guest panellist.
Sophie has gone one step further with her home so it's completely accessible for her needs while also being beautiful and modern.
We love the blue kitchen cabinets contrasted with the light grey cupboards, crisp white walls and wooden flooring. Features include a combi oven microwave, induction hob, adapted shelves, dishwasher, fridge and freezer, work station, and a sink with boiling water and a filtered water tap, with space underneath for wheelchair users.
The open plan living room has a raised burnt orange velvet Loaf sofa and raised plug sockets. While in the bathroom, the accessible wetroom has grab rails throughout, plus a foldable shower seat, bi-fold shower door and large corner bath with grab rails.
Sophie, who released her debut book, Driving Forwards, in 2022, said: 'One of my favourite things about my home is my accessible bathroom as it's so gorgeous yet practical. This is part of the reason why I wanted to become an Airbnb Host as I want to share that bathroom with other wheelchair users.
'Inclusion when you travel impacts how you feel on another level. I've worked really hard to make my home accessible for me, and I know that it would also be great for so many other people — especially those with disabilities — so I really want to share it. Hosting on Airbnb is also a great way to earn some extra money while I'm on holiday or away for work.'
To encourage others to make their homes more accessible, Sophie has shared three tips on how to do this:
Communicate well with your guests and be open to answering specific questions about your place.
Share as many photographs as you can of the space, including detailed descriptions of accessibility features.
Provide additional information about the location of your listing, like recommendations for accessible restaurants and attractions in the area. All this information makes a world of difference.
Amanda Cupples, General Manager for Northern Europe at Airbnb, comments: 'We are committed to making it easier for people with disabilities and other accessibility needs to travel freely. The launch of the new Adapted Category on Airbnb is another step in our mission to inspire guests with mobility needs to travel, and easily find and book incredible spaces, just like Sophie's home in London.'
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