"Access on Wheels". Linking Customers with Providers of Accessible Tourism and Travel in Europe
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Belgian, Bert van Driel became a wheelchair user in 2007. However, he wanted to remain active. Bert realised that active wheelchair users need to carefully plan any activity. During this process, he noticed that most on-line information is not accurate and outdated. Bert started the non-profit organisation "Access on Wheels" in 2009 as an independent forum by and for wheelchair users.
Belgian, Bert van Driel became a wheelchair user in 2007. However, he wanted to remain active.
Bert realised that active wheelchair users need to carefully plan any activity.
During this process, he noticed that most on-line travel information is not accurate and is often outdated.
Bert started the European non-profit organisation, "Access on Wheels", in 2009 as an independent forum by and for wheelchair users.
Access on Wheels opened its website at www.accessonwheels.eu in October 2009. The site provides practical information to wheelchair users about accessible locations and activities in Europe. The site is published in English, French, Dutch and German languages, reflecting its European and international orientation.
- It is a social meeting point for members to get in contact with active wheelchair users.
- All information is described and assessed for and by wheelchair users.
- Access on Wheels offers a search engine per region.
- Access on Wheels is managed by wheelchair users, and operationally supported by volunteers.
The website's main information categories cover Accommodation, Transport, Events and Services. In addition to searching for information, wheelchair users can write inspection reports and guests can write reviews about the places they have visited and the services they have received.
Photo: Bert van Driel, out for a spin
With his business background, Bert realised that an on-line access information service needs a professional approach in order to be accepted by customers and providers.
The website is therefore designed to be customer-friendly and easy to use, while providers of accessible tourism services are offered promotional opportunities and added value services at minimal rates.
Adopting a "low-cost" business model, Access on Wheels has four categories of members: Wheelchair users, Volunteers, Sponsors and Businesses that want to promote their services.
Each type of member pays a flat-rate annual fee and businesses are not charged any commission fee for bookings.
Access on Wheels has an introductory offer until 15 March 2010. By paying for two years, new members get the third year for free.
Access on Wheels is an ENAT Member.