Business analysts are usually thought to be serious people and so is Shrinidhi Hande, but he has an adventurous side to him which too he takes very seriously.
Blogging since 2006 – 2800+ posts and 23000+ comments, 11 million+ lifetime pageviews; travelled to 42 countries and counting (25% of the world as perTripAdvisor travel map); contributions to Millionaire Asia Magazine, DT Next and others; featured in multiple print and electronic media; worked with multiple domestic and international tourism boards, hospitality brands and recently launched books on budget travel in English and Kannada.(Metador travel map counts Wales and Northern Ireland as separate countries while I have counted them as part of UK)
The list would have been expanding as you read, had the lockdown not happened. Before lockdown he still managed to cover one third of the world with one trip to Muscat and one trip to Dharamshala. Shrinidhi is a well-known travel blogger who got bitten by travel and blogging bug much earlier than others. He is much respected in travel circuit and has an exclusive site on flight deals as well.
It happened slow and steady over a time span of 14 years. Regular updates, 4-5 new articles a week, honest and useful reviews etc. Dependency on a single digital platform is risky as these platforms may change their rules any time. I still do not have too many followers on social media- never marketed myself much and never bought followers. Having an own identity like blog/website is much better as it gives more control and has long term prospects. I believe in Lord Krishna’s words – keep doing the good work, don’t chase success/fame – good things come to you sooner or later.
But like most people, the pandemic has changed the course of his life too, at least, for now. The lockdown has got Shrinidhi to stay put, closer home and explore the neighbourhood along with freelancing and waiting for things to get back on track.
For Shrinidhi, profession and passion have always gone hand in hand as both started around the same time in 2005/2006 and both came to a halt too together in 2019/2020 when he took a break from corporate career and subsequently the lockdown happened.
‘Profession is something that helps you make a living and passion is something that you live for’.
Professionally, Shrinidhi has worked in the best of IT firms in the country such as Satyam computers, and Accenture but that has never deterred him from travelling. Also, he has never offended anyone or delayed any work due to his travel plans. In fact, he has cancelled his pre-planned travels at times due to work or carried laptop and done essential work on the go. He always plans his travels months in advance but gives priority to work. He made full use of long weekends and planned few short trips round the year. He has learnt the art of creating a balance between the two, early in career.
Timely and proper planning also taught him to travel in smaller budgets, one third the cost of commercial packages. Also, the fact that Shrinidhi prefers a minimalist and simple lifestyle has helped him focus on his passion rather than spending money on big ticket spends like home, car, expensive gadgets etc. He prefers using public transport, doesn’t eat out much, doesn’t party and is a teetotaller so that he can use all that money for enriching his travel experiences.
After working for more than a decade in IT industry, he wanted to take a break and switched to freelancing so he could focus on writing his book and spend more time following his passion before he gets too old.
I wanted to write a book on travel since long time. I wanted to write it because most books and websites on travel tips had a commercial motive and were not aimed at giving cheapest and smartest way of traveling to public. I wanted to share my hacks and help people travel for one third the cost of a commercial tour package. Time was a factor, which I managed after I took a break from corporate career.
Shrinidhi, in fact, published his first book – World Travel in low budget, in Kannada and English languages in November 2019. He then got back to few consulting assignments, while the book was on its way to become a bestseller.
The book was received well and in a short span 300 copies got sold in English and Kannada each,emphasising on the booming budget-travel culture before lockdown. For Shrinidhi, the payback in terms of savings by future travellers would the USP of the book and his way of giving back to the travel industry which is an integral part of his life.
But before he could reap the benefits from the book, everything came to a standstill due to pandemic and travel has currently become the least of priority. This has affected the sales of the book too.
Shrinidhi is a little disappointed by the situation but that hasn’t stopped him from being hopeful that the things will get better. He also had a startup idea, which he has put on hold for now. But, as the saying goes – this too shall pass – he is confident that the travel industry will pick up soon. And so, he is preparing for the times to come.
A lot has changed in the travel industry. I will bring an updated version of the book early next year which factors considerations related to new normal.
He is also focussing on freelance assignments, has written 600+ pages of content for Karnataka tourism recently and writing couple of other books to make the best use of lockdown times before hitting the road again. He is also exploring his home district of Udupi in Karnataka, which he couldn’t undertake all these years as he stayed away from home in Chennai. However local exploration is also limited due to weather, time and covid19 related restrictions.