Relax on your couch and explore the world with a personal tour guide

These digital excursions attempt to convey households separated by borders nearer collectively at a time when worldwide journey continues to be restricted attributable to COVID-19

The Pyramids of Giza glint below the sharp afternoon solar.

At 33 levels Celsius, it’s a scorching day to go exploring the historical ruins. Khaled Ali, our guide, hops out and takes us nearer to the three monuments whereas giving us extra details about The Great Pyramid. Next, we head to the Sphinx. It makes for an arresting sight; all these photographs in journey brochures and web sites don’t fairly do it justice.

Meanwhile, my cellphone buzzes and I get again to work. Yes, I’m very a lot in Chennai and the lockdown continues to be on, however the cool factor is I simply spent an hour in Giza — because of digital excursions. While there are a number of such excursions accessible on-line, Tour HQ presents experiences which can be delivered reside from the metropolis streets. “These are also tours by locals and with locals,” says Gaurav Kumar, who co-founded the firm with Vandana Om Kumar in 2012.

Family get collectively

Each tour has a guide based mostly in the metropolis a shopper chooses. He/she then takes the shopper round city, introducing them to new cultures, sights and environment. The entire session occurs over a Zoom name; to keep up one-on-one interactions the individuals are capped at 10 per session, explains Gaurav.

Relax on your couch and explore the world with a personal tour guide

When the pandemic hit, journey got here to a standstill and there have been wide-scale cancellations. “Our guides, in particular, were badly hit and fell through the social security nets put up by governments around the world,” says Gaurav. But he knew native lockdowns can be lifted a lot earlier than worldwide tourism is allowed to renew. “We felt that there would be a significant period of time when guides will be able to roam around their cities but travellers could not or would not travel. That is how the idea to go virtual and engage the guides to help them make a living came about.”

With individuals continuously on the lookout for brand spanking new actions to check out as a household, that is a phase that’s having its second in the solar. “Clients are gifting these tours for birthdays and anniversaries. Around 70-80% of the orders we get are friends or families doing this as a social activity,” says Gaurav.

One of the most up-to-date get togethers was a 75th party the place members of the family joined in from Singapore, the US and the UK for a tour of Giza. The guide received camel herders to sing Happy Birthday and write the celebrant’s identify in hieroglyphics. For a lot of individuals, at this level, the most vital factor is the feeling of being related and doing issues collectively. Gaurav feels that is a method of doing it.

Tours begin at $9. For particulars, log on to

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