‘The struggle is part of the story. Embrace it and let it make you stronger. It won’t last forever.
Lovingly known as ‘Pitamah of Cruises’ in Gujarat market, Manvendra Singh Vaghela, Assistant Vice President – Sales (India & Middle East), Genting Cruise Lines; was born and bought up in Ahmedabad. At the age of 12, Manvendra lost his father and saw his mother struggle to keep the family going. He joined his uncle’s inbound travel agency in 1993 as a part-time job to support his mother with finances. After his graduation in 1995, Manvendra joined a newly established travel company with a motive to learn more about travel business. For another five years, he learned every know-how of the travel business from ticketing to hotel bookings to tour packages and group departures. It was in 2000 that he was selected by Star Cruises as Sales head for Gujarat market.
Recalling the initial days with Star Cruises, Manvendra said, “Changing travel agent’s perception about cruises was the biggest challenge for me. I still remember visiting travel agencies door-to-door, being denied to even enter the travel agency sometimes, carrying bags full of posters and even pasting them myself inside travel agencies. From manual labour to sales & marketing, I’ve given my blood and sweat to build what I have today. I am thankful for my struggles because without it I wouldn’t have stumbled across my strength. I am also thankful for all the trust I’ve received from the travel community – most of them are not just business associates but are my family now.”
This year, Manvendra completed 20 years with Genting Cruise Lines and 18 years of his marriage. He said, “In business, you need the trust of your boss to do the impossible and succeed in your work while in life you need support from your spouse to build a happy family. I’ve been lucky in both business and life.”