Deyor: Digital Companions of the Travelling Spirits, Exploring Hearts, and Discovering Minds

Chirag Gupta, Gautam Yadav & Himanshu Agarwal | Founders | Deyor
Chirag Gupta, Gautam Yadav & Himanshu Agarwal | Founders | Deyor

The enthusiasm of wandering spirits has been rekindled post-pandemic. The road is again calling them to take their next voyage. For such millennials, in the new normal, old-fashioned holiday planning is a thing of the past.

Today, people not only from urban metro habitats but also from tier-II and tier-III cities are moving online for new age travelling, holiday discovery, and booking solutions. They are now turning from traditional holiday and travel planners to a company with direct access to other products and service providers in the ecosystem.

This modern tech-savvy B2B and B2C holiday booking digital platform leverage tech on the supply-side to get real-time access to inventory and prices directly from the source.

Comprehending the fundamentals of business and then investing deeply into the technology, it became the brand today known as Deyor, a unique digital travel booking platform formed and run by an expert team of holidaymaking companions.

In an exclusive interview with CIOLOOK India for its edition of ‘The Most Promising Travel Management Companies’, Chirag spoke about how his team at Deyor is completely transforming the Indian Tourism Industry for travelling enthusiasts.

Please brief our audience about Deyor, its USPs, and its position as a leading player in travel management.

We at Deyor curate experiences as per our customer’s demands, interests, and budgets. We are a direct-to-consumer experiential travel and technology company incorporated in 2016.

Deyor stands for Decide Your Own Route, and we are on a mission to become India’s leading holiday discovery and booking platform.

Our highly able team at Deyor understands the problems of discovery, trust and experience that cloud the experiential travel industry.

Neighbourhood travel agents are a thing of the past. We have moved on to tech platforms to hire cabs, book hotels, and flights, but we still go to travel agents when booking an entire holiday package as there is no clear alternative.

Deyor understands the need for intelligent consumer engagement in times like these, and our team of well-travelled destination experts give suggestions to travellers based on personal experiences. We personalise travel plans by understanding the customer’s needs and wants and making the entire journey hassle-free.

We are India’s first and leading WhatsApp chatbot travel platform. Bots contribute positively to customer satisfaction. They reduce customers’ waiting time and get a simple reply; later, our destination experts take over and are then able to put their time and efforts into more complex conversations. This helps to improve the customer experience.

What other products/solutions does Deyor offer, and how are these impacting the travel management space?

We started by offering adventure travel solutions such as bike trips across destinations including Leh Ladakh, Spiti Valley, Bhutan etc. We ventured into providing trekking solutions across the entire Himalayan Mountain range.

Soon, we expanded into the domestic holiday market, covering destinations such as Andamans, Kerala, Kashmir etc.

Now we’re a full-stack holiday discovery and booking platform offering experiences including Honeymoon, Adventure, and Leisure tours across India and 11 countries in South-East Asia and the Middle East.

We are on track to expanding our footprints globally and aim to be offering experiences across 35+ countries around the world by the end of 2022. This will include Europe, Japan, and South America.

Being an experienced leader, share your opinion on the impact of the adoption of modern technologies such as AI on the travel management niche and what more could be expected in the future?

A Google Travel study showed that 74% of travellers plan their trips on the internet; TripAdvisor’s study showed more than 45% of users use smartphones to plan their vacations. One of the most exciting uses of artificial intelligence in the tourism industry is assisting customers online.

AI can respond to questions and provide relevant information to customers even when a customer service agent is unavailable. Customers demand faster responses, and artificial intelligence allows businesses to deliver the same. It can handle the essential conversations that help agents devote their energy to ensuring that customers invest their time and money into a trip they want to experience.

For now, AI services such as chatbots and robots are monitored by humans to ensure that it works smoothly, and a survey suggested that only 11 per cent of millennials prefer the assistance of AI.

So, while human customer service is still preferred over AI, and the use of the same is not that extensive, AI has a place in the future of the travel industry because of its potential to improve efficiency and bring automation. The travel industry understands the potential of AI, and global leaders like Sabre and Marriott have started using the same.

We at Deyor have utilised AI as a chatbot that helps travellers plan their trip and then connect our destination experts to them, making the process simpler and fruitful for both the traveller and our expert. Many small businesses emerged from tier II and tier III cities during the lockdown; most companies did not have any previous online presence.

To survive in the growing tech market, small businesses from these cities are making necessary changes in operating and dealing with their customers. UPI (unified payments interface) has made payment convenient, especially during the lockdown, and is emerging as an efficient payment method.

Considering the current pandemic, what initial challenges did you face, and how did you drive Deyor to sustain operations while ensuring the safety of your employees at the same time?

As we all know, the pandemic has been challenging, especially for the travel industry. By taking specific measures, we ensured that the effects of the same were reduced.

Work from home had become a norm during the pandemic, and all COVID safety protocols were strictly followed when work from the office had resumed ensuring the safety of our employees.

On the financial front, preserving cash was the main agenda; we fixed a cash culture that balanced short-term requirements with longer-term competitive considerations. Putting in the best practices of managing cash enabled us to emerge on a stronger front from this crisis.

We took this time to analyse our internal processes and improve upon the same. This helped us strengthen our operations which proved fruitful when the travel industry gained momentum.

It also gave us time to research other destinations to increase our inventory. We are gradually opening international destinations as soon as their COVID guidelines become travel friendly. We provide current customers to plan their trips on later dates and ensure customer retention.

Shifting the focus of our company from B2B to B2C benefited by giving higher profit margins, more control over our products and allowed us to offer a full range of products. Leveraging the internet on the supply side enables real-time information sharing, such as room inventory and rates; this gives us a competitive edge.

What would be your advice to budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the travel management space?

My advice to the budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the travel management space would be that the customer experience is the key to running a successful venture because one happy customer will bring you a hundred more; word of mouth is your most powerful advertising tool, our entire company is forged around this belief, and we see the positive results of following the same as well.

In today’s fast-paced environment, technology has become an important part of a business as it helps to make the various process more efficient. Today’s entrepreneur knows the importance of integrating tech into their business, and therefore, we can see more and more enterprises doing the same. It is essential to have a clear picture of the fundamentals of your business and a plan before investing in technology; this makes the integration process easier and smooth.

How do you envision scaling Deyor’s operations and offerings in 2022 and beyond?

Pandemic gave us the time to research more into other destinations and helped us expand internationally; with the right partnership, we can see the scale rising. We so far have a presence in around six countries and plan to scale up to about 14 countries.

Moreover, we are getting deeper into a destination and launching more products. As the travel industry is catching up to its pre-covid state, we have diversified our product portfolio and added international destinations such as Maldives, Turkey, Greece, Switzerland, Egypt, and Bali and will be expanding to other international destinations soon as their travel restrictions ease.

Europe, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East are some of the major places that have emerged as desirable destinations for many travellers worldwide. Europe is full of historical and architectural marvels, whereas Southeast Asian countries have become the perfect destination for a vacation.

The Middle East has seen a lot of development in the past two decades and is a great place to experience modern technological and architectural marvels. Keeping in mind these points, we can conclude that these destinations have a lot of opportunities that will prove fruitful.

Exhibiting Excellence 

Chirag Gupta

Over nine years of experience in the start-up space. Chirag started his professional career by handling investments into start-ups at Redcliffe Capital. He managed over 22 investments, including big brands such as InFeedo, PeeSafe, Shipsy, Innov8, and Qdesq, to name a few. Being in the limelight for disrupting the travel industry, Chirag has been featured on various platforms.

Chirag has embarked on this journey from addressing crowds at Dubai’s biggest Middle East travel conference to addressing aspiring entrepreneurs in colleges, to media houses such as BTVi Live, Et Now Economic Times and CNBC TV18 Young Turks to conquer the experiential Industry in India. Taking home, the Young Entrepreneur of the year award by Business World in 2018 was just the first step towards that goal.

Chirag was named in the prestigious list of Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia, 2019, for his achievements in the travel sector early in life.

Being amongst 50 top CEOs in India presented by Facebook and taking away Asia One’s India’s Greatest Brands award for his venture, Deyor, are fantastic recognition of his passion and ability. He can inspire millennials while himself being one.

In his young career, he has convinced investors from Japan, the UK, the USA and Indian HNIs to believe in his idea and invest in the business to help him and his team achieve their goals. His profile speaks in length about his success and passion for disrupting the new era of travel and spearheading this change in travel trends.

From getting investors to agree to invest in his idea in a seven-minute pitch on CNBC Young Turks to being selected as one of the top 21 start-ups out of 63,000 applicants in Lufthansa Runway to Success, 2017, he is on the right path to building the next brand in travel, the brand for Millennials, Deyor.

He is also invited to be part of a significant international delegation in May 2022. He will participate with leading dignitaries from entrepreneurship to political sectors representing India while making us all proud.

Adding to this, Chirag expressed, “Our great success journey at Deyor includes angels such as Alok Mittal, Dheeraj Jain, Nitin Passi, Hemant Dua and VCs such as Stellaris VP, Let’s Venture, SOSV, and JITO have invested in us.”

Gautam Yadav

With a prior experience in event management, Gautam joined Deyor in 2015 and took care of on-ground operations, sales, and customer handling. As a start-up, every member must multitask; Gautam successfully executed the same during the initial days of the venture, which helped build a strong base for the company.

He is concerned with reconnaissance of a destination and has first-hand experience of the same, which helps him create a perfect product. Having a first-hand experience enables you to see things from the customers’ perspective; this contributes to product designing and introducing new products in the existing portfolio.

Gautam has been travelling and exploring for the last five years doing reconnaissance and building products and experiences for the company. During his journey, he met and built relations with the locals and understood their cultural experiences that have contributed positively to making the products.


He takes care of the finances and compliance of the company, has previous experience in starting up a sports blog and is an extensive traveller. He has been travelling for the last eight years and takes an international trip every three months, which contributes positively to the company’s global expansion.