Travel is getting far more accessible
“People still have these baked-in assumptions that someone with a disability is not powerful or doesn’t have anything to contribute to society,” says 28-year-old Maayan Ziv. “But I love challenging people’s assumptions.” And so in 2016, the Toronto-based entrepreneur – who lives with muscular dystrophy and uses a wheelchair – launched a crowd-sourced interactive app that maps the accessibility of places all around the world.
Born out of Ziv’s frustration that she couldn’t determine if a bar – or concert venue, or museum, or shop, or tourist attraction – was truly access-ible until she showed up there, AccessNow allows users to rate locations and search for spots with the accessibility features they require. It’s now expanded to 36 countries; when Ziv went to map an inclusive beachside restaurant in Tel Aviv last summer, she discovered she’d been beaten to it. “It shows you the power of the community,” she says. “People live everywhere, and they should be able to travel everywhere.”