AbiliTrek began as an innovative idea that morphed into a company geared toward bettering the travel experience for people with disabilities. Currently, both the travel and service industries lack the information people with disabilities need, making their adventures a daunting and exhausting task. AbiliTrek, by counteracting the current state of the service and travel industries, will make trekking a fulfilling experience for any person with a disability.
The idea of AbiliTrek was invented by Daman Wandke. Daman started AbiliTrek in response to his own experiences when traveling with Cerebral Palsy and decided to put his dream of changing the travel industry to the test in Bellingham’s 2016 54-Hour Startup Challenge. AbiliTrek won the challenge and that set his idea into motion.
2016 was all about planning and by the beginning of 2017, we started working to make sure we were ready for our launch in April. Dedicated to building the best service we could to assist the disability community, countless hours were spent constructing our website to make sure it was both attractive and accessible to all.
AbiliTrek began as a hotel booking service but at the beginning of 2018 made a pivot.
AbiliTrek is a multifaceted company with the mission of improving accessibility and empowering people with disabilities.
With the hotel booking service, came a review platform that a user could fill out (i.e. rating the accessibility). We have phased out of the hotel booking service and have created a Yelp-like website with the goal of improving access. AbiliTrek provides a platform for the disability community to rate and review the accessibility of any establishment. This service not only allows people to complete reviews of hotels but is more inclusive allowing people to review the accessibility of almost any place someone can trek (locally or afar). As people make reviews, this platform will grow into a wealth of knowledge so travelers with disabilities can find businesses which are–and are not– accessible to them.
AbiliTrek offers consulting services in the areas of:
Our customized consulting process reflects that accessible is not “one size fits all”, so what one business needs to be accessible to the most amount of people, may be different than what another business may need. We provide the knowledge necessary for businesses to be more inclusive and accessible to all people.
Though the genesis of AbiliTrek did not take place in a garage, those of us at this Washington State start-up are driven to be as innovative and affluent to the disability community as Microsoft, our neighbors just south of us.
To assist businesses and universities with creating a more accessible and inclusive environment where everyone receives equal access and opportunity.
Achieving Our Mission
AbiliTrek began as a hotel booking service to fill the informational gap within the travel industry by accumulating accessibility data that is not available anywhere else. Though AbiliTrek has made a pivot in the service provided, we will continue to expand the database provided to people with disabilities by providing a review platform to express the accessibility of anywhere that anyone can trek. We will also provide information directly to businesses via consulting so that they are able to create a more accessible environment. AbiliTrek will continue to support the transformation of the travel and service industries to ensure that it is more inclusive for all.
AbiliTrek will be the voice behind disability advocacy and awareness that will also back the call to action for the world to be Universally Designed.
The AbiliTrek Team
AbiliTrek is comprised of knowledgeable individuals who are both experts and influential in their respective fields. We understand accessibility as it relates to countless areas of people’s lives. AbiliTrek is lead by Daman Wandke, a trailblazer in improving accessibility for all. Together our Pacific Northwest team has the skills to advance accessibility across industries.
CEO, Founder, & Lead Accessibility Consultant
Daman concentrates on the areas of IT accessibility & speaking engagements (TEDx, TAG, WWU, SBA panels). With nine years in the public & private sector working with Multinational corporations, he empowers others to trek without boundaries.
Director of Accessibility & Communications
Kyann concentrates on the areas of onsite accessibility, training & speaking engagements. With six years of experience teaching disability education and Ms. Wheelchair WA – 2017 she is defying the Defined Disability.
Lead Software Developer
Travis concentrates on the areas of web development and accessibility testing and remediation. With over two years professional software development experience, he is making the web accessible for everybody.
Lead Operations Manager
Tripp concentrates on keeping our team in cohesion. As a recent graduate from Western Washington University with a degree in Communications, he makes things happen.