To win big, you sometimes have to take big risks – Bill Gates
Rightly said by one of the greatest entrepreneurs that the world has ever known and, taking risk is something Bhaskar Jyoti Saikia swears by. With a passion to bring the world close to the unexplored beauty of the Northeast region, Bhaskar, a resident of Tezpur came up with the idea of a travel company while he was pursuing his final year of B.Tech at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Gandhinagar in Gujarat.
When he shared his idea of a startup with his friends, they all came in to give him the push that he needed. After that, there was no looking back for Bhaskar, an IT professional currently working in Bengaluru. He roped in his friends, Ashim Rajkonwar, Himangshu Chauhan and Yash Bohre to give shape to this dream of putting Northeast on the global tourism map. Together, they named the project as Fancyland.
Thinking out of the box
Speaking to Time8, Bhaskar said, “Our travel startup is unique and different from other travel companies. It is for young people who always want to explore more, seek for something out of the box. So, our company is for new-age travellers who don’t want a cliche sight-seeing trip to the region. Northeast is much more than Cherrapunjee in Meghalaya, it has other states that house multiple tribes who have their own culture, food, lifestyle and not to forget the list of festivals that we celebrate.”
“During my research, I found out that the travel companies offer a fixed itinerary of the things that you can do on your trip to Northeast. This disappointed me, as I want people to reach the grassroots and live, eat and enjoy like the locals. So, I and my co-founders came up with this idea of a customized tour plan where the traveller decides the place and activities they want to do on their trip,” he added.
Customized travel trips
Speaking briefly about what the Fancyland is offering, Yash said, “First, you have to submit the duration of the travel following which a list of activities will pop up which will include, backpacking, trekking, historical expedition and so on. Also, there will be a map of the Northeast where people can move the cursor to choose the state they want to visit. So, it is completely up to the travellers to prepare their own itinerary.”
Currently, Bhaskar and his friends are engaged in different IT companies and are planning to come up with their website soon. “There are lots of things that we want to do for our startup, like visiting each state in the region before going live with our website. Till now, I have personally visited five Northeastern states – Assam, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Sikkim. We want the hidden gems of Northeast to get the righteous exposure in the global platform,” added Yash who is presently pursuing his Masters in Designing from IIT Delhi.
A land beyond your imagination
When asked about the reason behind naming the startup as Fancyland, Bhaskar promptly replied, “‘Fancy’ means something which is beyond your imagination and ‘Land’ means the Northeast. Hence, Fancyland means Northeast is a land of your imagination.”
Currently, the IITians are using their offline connections, word of mouth, Instagram account to popularise Fancyland. “The website is under construction and hopefully we will go live soon,” said Bhaskar.
Speaking about his teammates, Bhaskar said, “I first teamed up with Ashim from Sivasagar. Yash is in the website designer and all-rounder Himangshu is looking after the finances for the project. Ashim is the coder of our project. Our strength has increased from four to five members when Filza Piya Borah joined the team as a content developer two months back.”