The online restaurant search engine khujbo.com is initiated by a young Bangladeshi entrepreneur. The search engine helps to find out nearby restaurants or residential hotels in Bangladesh.
Jannatul Islam Rahad from The Daily Observer talked to Khujbo.com Founder Asif Irtiza Hussain on different issues on the Bangladesh's pioneer search engine.
Observer: When did you think of developing khujbo.com? Say something from beginning.
Asif Irtiza: I love to travel a lot, visit new places and try new things. A couple of years ago, I went to the old Town to taste the legendary Nanna's Biriyani . But I didn't know the exact location of the outlet. I asked around and roamed about for almost 1 hour from Bangsal to Lalbagh Chowrasta and then finally to Becharam Deuri where the Nanna Biriyani was located. Even then there were 3 different restaurants with the same name and all claimed to be the original 'Nanna'. I wondered only if someone impartial could tell me which restaurant was the genuine one! I think this was the initial starting point of Khujbo.com. Also, during my trips outside the country I saw that not only in the technologically developed countries like Thailand and India, but also in developing countries like Nepal they have websites and apps that help you to locate restaurants, hotels and other attractions easily. So, why not in Bangladesh?
Observer: How will Khujbo.com help us in our outings? Say something about its services.
Asif Irtiza: Khujbo.com has two parts - one is the restaurant/hotel search engine and another is tourism information hub where you can get any information about visiting any place in Bangladesh. Currently, we are also developing our mobile app which will show you all the hotels, restaurants and attractions near you. So, if you are planning to visit a new city, for example Sylhet, you can log onto khujbo.com and get the information about where you will stay in Sylhet, is the hotel within your budget, who cooks the best food in town, which are the places you must see and how you can reach your destination etc. You can also read user's reviews of their experiences. Khujbo.com simply revolutionizes how people spend their weekends in Bangladesh by offering free genuine information.
Observer: What is the current status of Khujbo.com?
Asif Irtiza: Khujbo.com officially launched in June, 2014 and it is in its "beta" phase. Currently a team of dedicated volunteers are working hard to gather information about all the hotels, restaurants, tourist attractive spots in Bangladesh. First we will cover the hotels, restaurants and spots of the major cities and then gradually we will cover the whole country.
Observer: How an individual can contribute to Khujbo.com?
Asif Irtiza: Khujbo.com is a community of passionate travellers and foodies. And like any other community it needs the active participation of its members. We encourage individuals to rate and review the restaurants and hotels they have been to, so that others benefit from this information. Individuals can also share their adventurous experiences in our travel blog so that the whole world can see how beautiful and exciting Bangladesh is.
Observer: According to you, where will Khujbo.com be after five years?
Asif Irtiza: I hope that access to all the big and small restaurants, hotels and other necessary information will be available through Khujbo.com. The main goal of Khujbo.com is to promote travellers and travelling in Bangladesh.
But to achieve that we need active participation of the communities. Khujbo.com is not aimed towards generating profit although the goal is significantly big. So we need donors, investors and volunteers.
I am hopeful that Bangladesh and the world will appreciate this effort. We all know that Bangladesh is beautiful; we just need a platform to promote her, to provide information about travelling and tourism. Khujbo.com hopes to do this with the help of its active community.