Travel Couple Savi & Vidit On Bruised Passports: ‘The Two Of Us Have Been Rebels’

Digital sweethearts and travel superheroes, Savi & Vidit grew up in Delhi. Today they are forerunners of the blogging and digital entrepreneurship sphere in India. Savi & Vidit have visited over 100 countries together and their writing and photography has been credited for changing the way millions of people approach travel. They have penned a bestselling book about their travels and their work has won several awards by esteemed publications such as Outlook Travel and Travel & Leisure for their work in the travel blogosphere. Their story has also been featured heavily on several TV channels and newspapers, including Discovery Channel, National Geographic, CNN, The Time Of India, Hindustan Times, and BBC.

In an exclusive interview with News18, the duo spoke in detail about their travel lifestyle in detail.

Here are the excerpts:

Over the span of 10 years, how have you seen your pages across different platforms evolve into a comprehensive resource for travelers worldwide?

Before going on our entrepreneurial journey, both of us had regular 9-to-5 jobs. But we loved travelling and would spend a big chunk of our savings and annual leave on exploring different parts of the world – from Asia to Europe. One thing we noticed when travelling on Indian passports was the dearth of information and inspiration for travellers from South Asia to venture and explore newer destinations. This is when we decided to share our tips from around the world on our website. Our passports were full of visas and stamps and we decided to name our blog “Bruised Passports” due to the state of our passports.Once social media platforms like Instagram started becoming popular, we planned to leverage it to revolutionize the way Indians travelled. We’ve constantly been adding resources and first-hand accounts from hundreds of cities and countries across the world to this, resulting in a one-of-its-kind resource for travel lovers. And it’s been truly fulfilling to see our platforms evolve into a comprehensive resource for travellers world wide.

Behind the captivating posts and stunning visuals, what are some of the challenges and efforts that go into creating interesting content as travel influencers?

We personally feel good content has to be visually appealing, entertaining, valuable so there is something that the viewer takes away from it. Before we travel, we research and narrow down on the areas and experiences we will showcase and once we are at the destination we create and curate some content in real time – this is mostly short-form videos and images. Once we have completed the trip, we go through all the content and make long form videos and detailed articles that present to our readers all the information that they might need to plan an unforgettable trip to the destination we just visited. So it is a time-consuming process but one that is thoroughly satisfying as it makes our vision come to life

How did you overcome the initial obstacles and stereotypes associated with being travel influencers, and what advice do you have for others facing similar challenges?

We started blogging almost 10 years ago when the word ‘influencer’ did not even exist. Both of us had full time jobs at the time. We consciously worked towards our plan – by saving money for collecting experiences and future travels. Finally In 2015, we decided to leave our full-time jobs and follow our dreams of exploring the world together & establishing a location-independent lifestyle.Starting anything from scratch is never easy but add to that the fact that it’s something that is not considered “normal”, you end up facing a lot of questions from everyone around you. We distinctly remember my manager telling me that we were being foolish by leaving our well-paying jobs to travel the world and establish Bruised Passports as an online venture. That we would regret it. And he was not the only one. It was difficult for society to fathom that someone would leave financial stability to travel the world. But the two of us were sure about our passion and knew we had to give it a shot. And we’re glad we did or we would have lost out on such amazing experiences, a thriving business venture, and the most loving and supportive online community of Bruised Passports readers. This story is also chronicled in our bestselling book called Bruised Passports: Travelling The World As Digital NomadsAt the end, we would advise everyone to choose their priorities and giving it your very best! Yes, anything

you choose will entail a lot of work. But choose work that makes you smile everyday.

Can you share some memorable moments from your journey as travel influencers that have reinforced your belief in following your hearts and living your dreams?

There have been many pinch-me moments on this journey – from being on the covers of magazines and TED Talks to winning awards and publishing a best-selling book about our lives at such a young age.However some of our most memorable moments involve our online community – meeting our readers in far-flung places such as a village in Finland or the Australian hinterland and being told they planned the trip because of something we shared online is truly priceless.

How has being travel influencers allowed you to break stereotypes and encourage people from diverse backgrounds to explore the world?

The two of us have been rebels for as long as we can remember, much before we decided to become

travel influencers. In fact it was this tendency that helped us carve the life of our dreams by taking the leap of faith to build a location-independent business at a time that content creation was not considered a viable profession by any means. Over the years, we’ve tried our level best to encourage people from diverse backgrounds not just to travel the world but also break the shackles of sexism, patriarchy, and convention through videos, articles, talks, and meetups. We love hearing anecdotes from our followers about how something we wrote or did inspired their everyday life in some little way – for example just yesterday we heard from a 27 year old female traveller who travelled solo to Iceland after seeing our posts from the country and a TEDx talk we gave a couple of years ago. Being able to indulge in this dialogue with our readers is one of the most empowering aspects of social media and the highlight of being a travel influencer for us.

What are some of the pros and cons of being travel influencers, based on your personal experience?

We are so fortunate to be able to do what we love and travel for a living. On the professional front, we are ecstatic that Bruised Passports has become a renowned brand and received more accolades and magazine covers than we can count recently. The cons? Of course as it is a public profession, one’s privacy is compromised. Most of the time we love meeting our readers, no matter where we are. But sometimes, especially when we are out with our families, we crave some privacy. The other challenge with this job, as with any entrepreneurial venture, is that one has to juggle a dozen roles all at once – being a photographer, copywriter, video editor, IT consultant, press manager, and the list goes on. But none of these seem like cons to us because ultimately what matters is we work in a field which makes us smile every single day! So we look excitedly towards the future, which is a mix of lots of exploring new places and taking the field of digital entrepreneurship and travel planning to new heights – hand in hand with each other of course.

Could you share some examples of feedback or stories from your followers about how your content has impacted their travel experiences or inspired them to explore new destinations? In what ways has your content helped and inspired people to travel to various destinations, and how does it feel to be considered a guide to traveling the world?

We get so many messages and emails from our readers regarding this each week that the sheer volume of messages inspired us to star a dedicated channel on Instagram for the Bruised Passports family. When we started out as travel influencers, it was our life’s mission to encourage people to see little corners of

the world and not be intimidated at the thought of planning a trip independently. So to see our readers send us photographs and notes from tiny towns in Iceland or road trips in South Africa that were planned upon reading our guides, well and truly makes our day. Over the years, we have pioneered several initiatives that promote responsible tourism – from anti-littering drives in popular tourist places in Bali (Indonesia) and Kerala (India). So it also makes us really happy when our followers share photographs of similar initiatives they undertake on their travels.

How do you manage the balance between your personal experiences and the expectations of your audience when creating content for your travel platforms?

When we first started out as travel lovers and digital entrepreneurs, the field was nascent, almost non-existent. As a result, we had no one to guide us. There was no glass-ceiling to break because this profession had no template. We wanted to provide travel lovers and aspiring entrepreneurs a blueprint to help them strike a balance between reaching out for their dreams, managing finances, and travelling the world. So we packed our website and social media with travel tips and advice inspired by the hurdles and successes we faced in our journey. But over the years, we have started including more and more details, such as everything from car rental prices to food options available at various places upon feedback from our readers.

Chronicling our travels comes naturally to us – so we love putting detailed travel and packing guides on our website and social media too. However, for this it is important to experience places authentically – one of the best parts of the life we’ve designed for ourselves is that we have the luxury to travel slowly.This helps us experience places and create content without it feeling too rushed. For instance we spent a

few months in Bali and in Guatemala. We would pick the camera probably once a week – the rest of the time was for experiencing little things and local life, which works its way into our travelogues and tips!

What role does research and planning play in ensuring that your content provides accurate and helpful information to your followers?

It might not seem like it but content creation is as busy as any other full-time job. And a very demanding one at that! The only difference is, when you work for yourself, you need next level discipline and motivation. Over the years, we’ve both found a balance that makes sure we can use our own strengths and weaknesses to the best of our abilities. We still work longer hours than we used to in our day jobs –

approximately 10-12 hours each day on average, but we have streamlined our work so we can have a flexible schedule, depending on which part of the world we’re in.We research beforehand about the places we visit, but we corroborate those details upon reaching the place! Moreover finer details such as hole-in-the-wall eateries, best places to book tickets, public transport schedules etc can be discovered only upon reaching the place! So we explore the place to the best of our ability and jot down each detail for our followers as we travel. This is what makes our firstperson accounts different from a bog standard itinerary supplied by a travel agent or company.

Can you walk us through the process of capturing and editing your photos and videos, and how much time and effort does it typically take to create a single post?

We try to create content that is inspirational but also informational for anyone and everyone who loves travelling. The time span needed to create 1 piece of content can differ vastly – sometimes it might take mere seconds to take a selfie at a spectacular spot and other times it can take hours to pen a comprehensive guide to a place or take a time lapse video of the Northern Lights. But no matter how much time it takes, we want our content to be visually appealing, entertaining, and have something that the viewer takes away from it.

As experienced travel influencers, what advice would you give to aspiring content creators who want to establish themselves in the travel industry and make a positive impact on their audience?

Social media is a constantly evolving world and it’s important for content creators and entrepreneurs to keep up with the changing times by adapting quickly. We always suggest that creators leverage these ever -changing media whilst keeping their core message and niche intact. Another thing that is important to remember is that “With great power comes great responsibility” – something to remember while working with brands, or creating content that raises awareness about issues that you might be passionate about.



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