Express News Service
The bags are packed. The house is locked. You’re ready to go. You’re at the gate, putting your best foot forward. Then the husband’s cell phone rings. The wife urges him to ignore it. He cannot. “An urgent board meeting has come up. I’ll have to stay back. Why don’t you and the kids go on without me? It’s just a matter of two days and I’ll join you later,” he looks guilty. Seeing an opportunity, Natasha Pimple, founder of Mumbai-based travel agency Dalodo, set up the ‘Little Trippers’ packages to allow one parent and their child or children to travel in groups to destinations in India and abroad.
“Unfortunately, taking time out for a vacation is often difficult for my husband, due to his work commitments, but he always insists that I take my holidays with our daughter. It struck me that there must be other parents like me who feel restricted because they don’t have a travel companion, for one reason or another. I thought of curating travel packages for one parent and their kids,” she explains.
Since childhood, Pimple’s love of travel and offbeat experiences have shaped her outlook on life and approach to business. In 2019, just before the pandemic she opened her travel agency Dalodo—an acronym for ‘do as the locals do’—that encourages unconventional travel experiences. “I wanted to make people feel like locals of any place they visited, even while ensuring that they are well taken care of in a foreign country,” she shares.
Dalodo’s Little Trippers vertical was set to kick off in April 2020, after she got bookings for both Ranthambore and cherry blossom viewing in Japan. The pandemic killed her plans. When the situation seemed to normalise, Pimple organised a quick getaway to Bengaluru and Mysuru with the popular Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Garden or Mysore Zoo as it is better known, as the highlight. A group of six mothers embarked with their four-year-olds on the inaugural Little Trippers vacation in November last year. A night in Bengaluru to break the journey, followed by two nights in Mysuru, was enough time for the children to become best friends. Even the mothers bonded so well that there was talk of arranging babysitters so that they could head out for the night.
Pimple says, “Travelling alone with your children can get a bit lonely and intimidating. Our Little Trippers packages are aimed at educating them on different cultures through travel. We choose only safe places, so that everyone feels comfortable and secure while enjoying themselves.”
Customising tour packages according to the age group of children makes it easier for Pimple to narrow down the travel options on the basis of accessibility and age-appropriate activities. This means that everyone gets along. Though the second wave dampened enquiries for such vacations, Pimple is hopeful that things will change soon. ‘Mama knows best’ is now a travel axiom.
“Our packages are aimed at educating children on different cultures. We choose safe places so that everyone feels comfortable and secure while enjoying themselves.”
Natasha Pimple, Founder, Dalodo
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Price packages: Inclusive of stay + meals + activity charges + transportation costs between destinations. Flights/other mode of travel separate
Maximum number of people for Little Trippers vacations (Dalodo groups can be larger):
Four-five families or 10-20 people, including children