“It’s tough, but so is working at a big corporate.” – Arjun...

“It’s tough, but so is working at a big corporate.” – Arjun Malhotra, Co-Founder, No Thepla Holidays.

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Team No Thepla Holidays in Malaysia.
Team No Thepla Holidays in Malaysia.

Travel today has become all about experiences. The new generation is no longer content with conventional sightseeing and looking for the closest Indian restaurant. The quest o explore and understand diverse cultures, sample local flavors, dance to eclectic music and met like- minded fellow travelers is becoming more and more popular. From off-beat locations to festivals to partying across the globe, holidaying abroad isn’t limited to guided tours of monuments and amusement parks anymore. The Indian traveler is now more open to traversing the uncharted and venturing into the off-beat.

No Thepla Holidays has been started by there friends who among them have traveled extensively, lived abroad and are all in love with the idea of ‘taking a break’. Arjun, Ayesha, and Sanaya plan event oriented, party and/or off-beat rips to locations across the globe – from music festivals to quirky festivals to party holidays at locations that are not frequented by the average Indian traveler.

No Thepla Holidays addresses the need to provide options to the modern Indian flash-packer. They  aim to be an aggregator of like-minded travelers who want to experience different cultures, met other travelers and don’t want everything planed to a ‘T’.

We caught up with Arjun in a brief chat about his journey of starting No Thepla Holidays, the trips they’ve organized, future prospects for his company and more. Read on.

1. How did the idea of No Thepla Holidays come into being? We noticed there are 4 people behind the venture. How did you guys meet and took the idea forward?
- The idea of starting a company came into being with Sanaya, an avid flashpacker herself decided that she it would be a great idea to start a company where other modern Indian flashpackers could come together and travel without the hassles of having to spend weeks on end researching, planning etcc.
- We (the co-founders of No Thepla) have all been friends for a while of which Ayesha and Sanaya are sisters. There are 4 people mentioned on the website as there where originally 4 of us who were planning on starting. Eventually it came down to the three of us – Ayesha, Sanaya & Arjun. We never had the heart to change it on the site.

- Ayesha has lived in Belgium for a few years and made most of every long weekend if not all weekends to explore most of estern Europe and a little of Eastern Europe. Apart from having traveled a little to the East, Kenya and to America, she’s also been to Belgium on an internship and is a great admirer of all who do one.
- Sanaya has a traveled a lot. She’d done more that 20 odd countries in the 5 years before we started No Thepla. Europe, Asia, North America. She has done an internship in Mumbai post college, as well.
2. How has the response been so far? Tell us about the upcoming trips No Thepla Holidays plans to organize.
- The response has been optimistic so far with travel being an interest for most people and a little cause of the name. We have three trips planned for 2015 so far. Two of them have been launched and are on our site and the third should be launched in the next week ten days.
  • Andaman: A scuba diving trip to the Andaman islands from the 1st to 7th of March (including Holi). We have partnered with a scuba diving company and bookings for the trip closed on the 31st of January
  • Cambodia: A culture, party and beach trip to Cambodia from the 28th of March to the 6th of April (including Good Friday). The trip starts and Siem Reap with the magnificent Angkor Wat and goes down to the paradise like islands in the country’s south and ends in Phnom Penh the capital
  • Vietnam (to be lauched shortly): The trip is to Ho Chi Minh and moves to Mui Ne, a quaint beach town and then to Nha Trang, another beach town.. Ho Chi Minh has the vibe of the country’s largest city with great partying. Mui Ne is famous for these awesome sand dunes that make you feel your in middle of a desert while your actually by the sea and Nha Trang is South Vietnam’s most famous beach location.
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Lantern Festival, Vietnam. Taken by Steven Clouston.

3. How much have you traveled personally? How has it helped you?

- Personally have traveled extensively throughout the country and across 6 countries other than India. Meeting people from different places with different cultures is always a great learning experience. Be it mannerisms. or language or even sign language skills.
 
4. What is Arjun Malhotra like besides the man behind No Thepla Holidays? Where did you complete your education from? What do you devote your time to other than No Thepla Holidays?
-  I have been to total of 8 schools (wasn’t kicked out of any – dad traveled for work) – the last and longest being a boarding school – the Doon School in Dehra Dun. I completed college at HR in Mumbai and am a CFA (USA). I come from a  background in investment banking. I have previously worked in the mergers and acquisitions team and EY (Ernst and Young).
Angor Wat, Cambodia. Taken by Steven Coulson.
Angor Wat, Cambodia.
Taken by Steven Clouston.

5. Have you ever done an internship during your college, or after? We’d love to hear about it! 
- I was a part of AIESEC in college (where I met Pranay, Co-Founder, Letsintern). Even though I was not part of any particular internship, I would definitely recommend it to all. We also like to prioritize someone with internship experience while hiring candidates for No Thepla.

 
6. Anything you’d like to tell our readers who’d want to take the road of entrepreneurship like you did?

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