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The group headed to Indore this weekend. (Express photo)
On Friday, despite the scorching heat and an eight-hour drive ahead, Rikin Gosai seemed excited as he finished his lunch in Dhule and set off in his car towards Indore. “I want to try Johny Hotdog and poha in Indore, we’ve heard a lot about them,” he says.
But more than food, he adds, the company of strangers on this trip matters. There are couples, families and two little children bundled up in four cars driving together for the first time.
The 31-year-old digital media manager, who would earlier go on biking trips, was introduced to this fresh concept of the Road Trippers club through a social media website. The idea is simple — strangers can come together, pool for a car and divide expenses and do a short road trip outside Mumbai.
“Traveling with others makes it easier to navigate. Plus I look forward towards camaraderie,” Gosai says.
Last month, he went 250 km from Mumbai to Dapoli with a dozen others for a barbecue by the beach at night. “I ended up knowing new people. We spent a good time,” he says.
The Road Trippers club is new. It was founded in February by two friends who also run a two-year-old website helping people plan road trips. The club came together with the idea of encouraging people for short road trips.
“We realised there are people who want to go on road trips but are not comfortable trying it out alone. Sometimes people don’t know what to do when their car breaks down, or where to go when exploring a new place,” co-founder Deepak Ananth says.
Since February, four such road trips have been planned to Dapoli, Mahabaleshwar, Igatpuri and now to Indore. People bring their cars and are encouraged to car-pool. The club allows everyone to join, from bachelors, to group of friends, and families with pets and children. “This is our first time. We were sceptical initially, but we are having an amazing time,” said Ankita Sodi.