Interview with Vasim Shaikh
Having travelled more than 50 countries across all seven continents, his favourite destinations include the likes of the not so common regions like Antarctica, Morocco, Iceland, Namibia, Uganda & Rwanda, the Amazon in Brazil, Argentina, Canadian, Arctic!
Vasim Shaikh, all of 34, describes his occupation as that of a Travel Enthusiast; though officially he is the Founder of ‘The Q Experiences’.
Hailing from a family background of travel & tourism Vasim knew it was ingrained in him and his future endeavors would not lead him too far away. He has an insatiable appetite for trotting across the globe with the inquisitiveness to explore and experience new corners and cultures. His interests outside of work are fitness, global cuisines & photography that strongly inspire the travel stories he churns out with. He is passionate about all things travel, fervently supports the conservation of nature, wild life & indigenous cultures, has a soft spot for supercars and is extremely pro-fitness & makes it a point to work out regularly interspersed with a variety of outdoor activities.
He started out in the travel industry in 2001 and still continues to remain a part of the family business. He branched out in 2012 to explore new terrains and fresh perspectives with The Q Experiences with plans to take travel to the next dimension by curating luxury experiences like never before. He believes Curated Experiential Travel is the mainstay of The Q Experiences and has already started expanding into small ship luxury cruising with the launch of The White Continent.
We took the liberty of asking him a few questions on luxury travel and The Q Experiences.
How have you embarked on Innovation and diversification in your products and services and their impacts?
The Q products and approach is entirely innovative. Our signature experiences include the likes of luxury cruising, bush plane safaris and self-driven super car journeys. Each one is carefully crafted with great detail, anticipating the expectations of our niche customers. All our products are uniquely curated with a personalized approach making each story an exclusive and one of a kind.
We only design journeys for those who have a quest for the novel and unique. We encourage our clients to reimagine luxury which shrinks our audience to a very focused group. Our teams put in additional efforts to push the limits of the customers’ imagination to explorer the endless possibilities. Once a Q client, our customers develop an insatiable appetite for the unexplored which is a constant challenge for our teams to churn out experiences to meet those expectations.
What makes your experiences exclusive and brings them into focus?
Today’s consumers are increasingly on the lookout for something different. They believe that investing in experiences holds more value than spending on tangible objects.
The evolved travelers choose to indulge on personally gratifying experiences thanks to enhanced exposure to different cultures and lifestyles. Travel today is more about exploring new destinations which are unique and uncommon. Travelers want to partake in unconventional activities like soaking in the hot-water springs of frozen highlands in Nordic Island of Iceland, exploring Botswana’s lush Okavango delta or taking in the surreal landscape of Patagonia in South America on horseback, a journey into the beautiful coastal desert of Namibia in Africa or a country in a wineglass in Europe. The Q team proudly boasts of their expertise in designing such unique travel experiences.
What sort of experience is most sort after and why?
It is difficult to define any one experience which is the most popular among travelers. All our patrons have different interests ranging from adventure to luxury and wellness to wildlife. At the Q, we take pride in being able to design journeys based on our clients’ preference. But every traveler at the end of the day wants to experience something unique and exclusive. Based on this, we are constantly curating novel experiences which include the like of exploring the Arctic and Antarctic, Polar Bear Migration and Bush Plane Safaris. The idea is to create a magnum opus!
What is that we can look forward to from you in future?
We are always looking to improve and better ourselves as with every trip that we curate we learn new things. Be it some aspects of the destination or client expectations we are always evolving. My teams use all their expertise to keep up with the dynamic travel trends and combine it with the travelers expectations, to design and curate the exclusive journeys.
For now look out for the the Arctic camp, that is going to be unique with its close encounter with the fierce beast of theTundra – Polar Bears during the day, and the Northern lights by the night.
One of my personal favorite is our bush plane safaris- a limitless experience with the freedom to explore Africa in all its glory.
And of course, our flagship journey to The White Continent this New year in Antarctica is something I am looking forward to. We have a whole lot more planned and will be unveiling the details soon.
Do you believe that the nature of the guest changed over the years?
Yes, Of course it has. The world is now on our finger tips and the evolved travelers are looking for exclusive vacations and investing in experiences that are unique, enriching and fulfilling. Travelers today understand that travel is an investment, our patrons have the willingness to spend as long as they are assured of an extraordinary experience. A passionate traveller is always willing to travel great lengths for unique experiences as they want to discover unseen places, understand new cultures, meet people across different ethnicities and indulge in new cuisines. The guests are well travelled, well read and looking for exclusive journeys as against the age old time tabled group tours.
What is the future of experiential journeys?
According to me, experiential journeys are the future! Every traveller is looking for value addition, for something novel and unique. Today, most of the conventional destinations have already been exhausted which has created a need to discover new corners of the world. There is a lot the world has to offer and a large amount of this remains unexplored.
Experiential travel is phenomenally different as it entails a subtle amalgamation of opulence, personalization and creativity which greatly appeals to our guests who are looking for exclusivity and very high standards of quality and service.
With an aim to provide such experiences and encounters to this discerning audience, we started ‘The Q Experiences’