Grappling with personal and professional challenges? Looking for a stress-free environment to rejuvenate? Shireen Mehra’s Women On Clouds is the answer to your prayers. Women on Clouds is a Delhi-based travel agency committed towards helping women have the best time of their lives. Excerpts from an interview:
1. How did the idea of “Wander On Clouds” strike you?
I once travelled with my girlfriends and their girlfriends to Camp Redstone in Dehradun. My brother was into corporate travel, so it was easy for me to organize the trip. That was the best trip I had, it was all about fun, laughter and merriment. That was when the idea of a women’s travel network for exciting holidays germinated. I feel that travelling with a group of women is high on fun and low on stress. We launched in 2008.
2. Which promotional strategies have worked best for you?
Social Media works best for us. We have a Facebook page and have some 55,000 fans. Our biggest publicity has been through word of mouth. Women who have travelled with us have come back with their other friends. We post our trips on Facebook and those interested sign up. We talk to them to know a little about them and their preferences. Age, smoking preference etc are some of the factors I keep in mind before pairing them. We also send our regular mailers to update them about our forthcoming trips.
3. Is there diversity in the kind of women who go on such trips?
Women from all walks of life approach us for such tours. We don’t differentiate women on the basis of their profession etc. We have housewives, elderly women and professionals — women from diverse backgrounds travelling with us — and we make sure they feel comfortable in each other’s company. We also have mom-daughter pairs travelling with us.
4. What is the company’s pull factor?
The pull factor could also be freedom, stress-busting exercise, an ego boost, self-development, education-cum-fun, ‘me-time,’ making new friends, rediscovering yourself, or just shopping, With many women choosing to remain single or marrying late or even for women who are married but their families are not interested in a particular holiday or their husbands are busy, our network offers them everything they are looking for.
5. What safety measures do you keep in mind while organizing such trips?
Safety is our topmost priority on all our trips. Our trips are very well planned — end to end. Women never feel alone, and are never left to fend for themselves. One female coordinator stays with the group from start to finish. Our hotels, airlines, trains, transport etc are all well recognized, certified and established. We arrange point to point travel, so that women are never alone. So, safety is something we are extra cautious about.