Being the son of an Indian Army officer outside of Jaipur, I have always believed that being a good man and doing good for others will bring good onto myself. Running Incredible Real India Tours for over 25 years now was not the path I had expected.
My formal training is in Electrical Engineering, and soon after getting my Diploma I struggled to find a job for a long time. I remember I was 21 years old when my father retired from the Army and decided to start a transportation business with a partner. The project failed miserably and the whole family faced a big loss in so many ways. Innocence did not help inside the corporate and commercial world.
Our family had lost everything we had, and my father after such an incident became very insecure and a sad person. Loosing all his hopes and dreams was not an easy situation in front all of us. Nothing left at that time, except God’s help and mercy!
Thanks to the transportation business I had learned to drive a car, which is a very difficult skill in India; then, my only option was to risk myself and to drive a taxi for a travel agency, trusting myself as my last chance and only hope for helping my family to survive.
However, being part of Rajput Caste to Kshatriyas Varna, known as the Warrior high society group in India, it was very hard for me to drive a cab in my own city, Jaipur. This profession is not seen as a respectable job. Most of my childhood friends, with whom I used to play for so many years, stopped talking to me.
In 1992 I made the decision to move to Delhi in order to work far away from my own society´s eye. Penniless and without any money available for my family’s needs, I borrowed 2000 Rupees (almost $70.00 USD at that time) and a tank of gas in order to work as a taxi driver in a new city. I can say this was the departing point of my tourism career.
In the beginning, living in Delhi was very difficult with less than a dollar per day and sending money to my family as the only mean of financial support. Feeling so lonely in a huge city and without any friends or relative members was one of the saddest moments I had faced in life. Most of the time treated by local people and policemen like I came from an enemy country. I was too small in this big world without any guidance. It was a challenge to establish myself in this unknown city and market.
For one month day by day, I showed up at a travel agency sitting and waiting for a job. It was impossible for me to go back home without money. My family was in worst conditions than me. There were moments of absolute hopeless feelings inside of me, doubting that I could be able to find any opportunity.
Finally, one day after my struggles, a person in that agency asked me if I wanted to give a Rajasthan tour. It was impossible for me to believe those words… The man asked me how much I would charge for a 15 days trip? My answer was to pay me as he wished. Then, I got a job for the next 15 days.
Inside my cab I cried a lot, I had never cried so much in my life before, those were tears of gratitude, as at that time I was experiencing the happiest moment in my difficult journey. The payment I received was 12,000 Rupees ($240.00 USD) for the company and 8,000 Rupees ($160.00 USD) as a tip.
It was my true beginning. I was able to pay back the 2,000 Rupees and the petrol tank I had borrowed to start my life on those circumstances.
After ten years as a tourist taxi driver in Delhi, I gained experience and geographical knowledge traveling all over the country, making all type of contacts and learning about the best places to take the tourists.
The next incredible moment was when I took a group of five people from Olesa, Spain on a journey, which after our travel adventure they wrote my name in a special tour guidebook, and in a newspaper. A second Spanish group appeared and introduced me into the Hi-Tech world, helping me to create a small webpage for my emerging tourism business. Hard and committed work started to bloom and I became successful on my own, gaining tourists from Spain by word of mouth instead through a travel agency.
I was one of the leading people in the driver's community who really changed the system of Indian Tourism. Before, visitors traveled around India only through big Travel companies, but instead, I built my own tourist taxi driver´s organization. We did not use the corrupted commission system that agencies were used to get. Our values were strong based only on good service, hard work, discipline and ethical values.
The result was a company offering low prices and providing excellent services competing against the large travel agencies. People did not believe we were real because of our affordable prices and unique treatment.
By word of mouth from many happy clients, I was able to get enough customers from Spain to officially begin with a real company. Although business was hard and very competitive at first, I maintained a positive outlook and remained patient that good would come to my and my people.
I kept myself patient because I knew was the beginning of my path in Tourism, offering a professional level of services. With each client, our actions would prove us more than words.
My motto with each one was: “If you are happy, please tell to others. If you are not happy, please tell me so we will not repeat the same mistake again, since we are here for you and your families.”
Today, after a long unique path, I still the same man with strong beliefs. Living with my beloved family, Chanda, Swati and Anurag back in my hometown of Jaipur, I lead with respect and love my company, serving pride guests from around the world, including whole Europe, United States of America, Canada, Mexico and Australia. All of them have become part of me, and Incredible Real India…
Peace at your home and in life too