Monish Shah did his Msc in International Securities, Investment and Banking from University of Reading, United Kingdom. He has eight years of experience in the finance and banking sector. He has worked for companies like Deutsche Bank, Primon Capital Management Services Private Limited, and Capital Markets Daily.
While planning for his honeymoon, Monish couldn’t find a single portal that can help him plan the trip. Instead, he had to spend over ten hours and visit more than fifteen websites to finalize his trip. To address this problem, with the help of his friend, Malhar Gala, together they conceptualized TraveLibro, which is a portal and app, made for the ones who love to travel.
Please provide a brief overview of your product/ service.
TraveLibro is a travel social networking portal, which aims to create a travel ecosystem to connect travellers with fellow travellers, bloggers, travel agents, on-line travel agents, and other industry partners.
From a traveller’s perspective you can Explore (80 Countries, 1200 Cities, 20-50 Must Do’s per city for different types of travellers, over 10,000 hotels, more than 35,000 restaurants and over 3000 itineraries), Plan (3 Step simple trip planner using the information mentioned in Explore), Book (Meta Search engine launching in March), Experience (TraveLibro App – On the Go Journeys), Share (Social Networking Element) and Cherish your past memories (Travel Diaries) all under one roof, on TraveLibro.
Our USP though is a feature on the App called On the Go. For those who prefer to go off the beaten track and find something new with every destination, the one stop app with its suggested must-do’s and list of hotels and restaurants is a must. That’s not all! With the ‘On the Go’ tab, you can also track your travel experience with simple check-ins, picture uploads and status messages and (like the name suggests) while you are on the go. Furthermore, it allows friends travelling together to share experiences and post moments to the same timeline so that you can relive your travel moments over and over again!
TraveLibro is your entire travel experience, right from the bucket list to a suitcase full of memories.
What inspired you to build the above product/ service?
When I was planning my honeymoon I got the idea that there is not a single portal where I could draw inspiration from the past trip of my friends. Additionally I had to visit over fifteen websites and spend over ten hours to plan my trip. That’s where the idea of TraveLibro originated of having one single platform which would do everything for me with regards to my travels.
What is your life mantra?
Have a dream, make it your passion, follow the plan and then give it all your heart.
What was the most challenging part of your journey till now?
As a startup, looking to build an entire travel ecosystem, cost and expertise are always a challenge. In addition to that marketing the entire gamut of services that TraveLibro provides has been a challenge since day one since there are a lot of components that need to come together. However, we have stood through the difficult times and our product has finally come together making it a lot easier to market and showcase our offerings.
How did you overcome those challenges?
We believe in taking a step at a time and quickly learning from our mistakes. This has given us the patience of going the distance and constantly evolving our product before we hit the centre stage and start marketing our product.
Share some details about the investments that you have been able to fetch for the business till now.
TraveLibro has been bootstrapped by our Co-Founder Malhar Gala and myself.
How do you protect yourself from the problem of Brain Drain?
We have a strong policy of challenging our team with something new every month. We encourage an open door policy where the team can at any point openly discuss how they would like to contribute differently or contribute additionally. These ideas are then evaluated in detail and a best outcome for both is drawn. Our attrition rate has been less than 5%.
According to you, what are the three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
It’s important that any individual who want to achieve success is passionate, dedicated and courageous.
Which online tools/ services/ apps do you use the most and would like to recommend as well?
Currently I am obsessed with my app and portal, TraveLibro. However when I do get free time, I am active on other social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. I also use Nike Running very often to track my runs.
Share any one habit which you think makes you more productive.
I have a habit of going for long runs late in the night or early morning to help channelize my thoughts and plan my day in advance. This helps bring out the best creativity in me.
Share any one habit which you wish to change in yourself.
There are times I start to run before I walk. This has taught me a lot of lessons. It is important to complete one step before you more to the next or else a fall is more likely.
Answer in less than 50 words
Work hard in silence, let success make the noise!
- One mistake you believe every individual must avoid:
Marketing your product before its ready.
- One most important lesson that you have learnt till now:
Don’t let each and every opinion cloud your judgement and at the same time analyse each and every opinion.
What are your plans for next 3 years?
To become the biggest travel social network in the world!
If you get a chance to start your career again what would you do differently this time?
Nothing! My Journey has been enriching and every lesson has been extremely valuable.
What are your top three getaway destinations?
London, Santorini and Udaipur.
Share a quote that inspires you the most.
“The best way to predict the future is to create it!”