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All grace: Vani Subhas
All grace: Vani Subhas

Travelling gives Vani Subhas, founder chairperson for Travel Agents Association of India, a high

To say that Vani is bitten bywanderlust is an understatement.Till date, she has clockedthousands of kilometres acrossthe world and is still raring to go."There are a few lucky souls whotranslate their passion into a profession.I guess, I am one of them,"she smiles.

As a youngster, Vani embarkedon a tour to Europe. The memoriesof that trip stayed on and whettedher appetite for more. "I went withmy cousin and we had to be reallypenny-wise. Coffee lovers like ushad to drink tea because it wascheaper," she recalls.

Born and brought up in Chennai,Vani moved to Hyderabad aftermarriage. Vani kept herself busywith books and travelling. Whenopportunity came in the form of asales executive job with Sita WorldTravels, she took it up.

Passion as profession

"It was more play than work and Ienjoyed it thoroughly," she says.She grew in the organisation to beits sales manager and just when shewas promoted as vice president,South India, she left to start HansaAviation, which was the generalsales agent for Lufthansa for AndhraPradesh, Kerala and Tamil Nadu(except Chennai).

"When I travelled to differentplaces, I did not realise it was thebeginning of a trend. Packagedtours are in and people are adventurous.When they are assured of agood break, they were ready topack their bags to set out for avacation," she says.

Her personal travelling experiencescame in handy while managingthe company's affairs. "Wespecialise in customising packages,"she says. Vani believes travellingis therapeutic and is glad shegot to trek in Peru or rest under acanopy of trees in the erstwhileUSSR or enjoy the lush fields ofNew Zealand with her group offriends.

The `girl gang' has been regularwith their vacations and the `wows'have been more in their trips than`woes'. "We had been to Yerevan(in erstwhile USSR) and the experiencewas awesome. It was thrillingto see the epicentre of theYerevan earthquake, but some ofus got goose bumps. The funnypart was that we had to bathe incold water in freezing temperatures,"she laughs. She was thechairperson of FICCI (2007-2008).

So what's next for Vani? I amready to plan my next trip. Theholiday season is on its way," shesmiles.

NEERAJA MURTHY

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