Up until a few days ago, Amit Arora was at his wits’ end. The 35-year-old’s high-pressure 14-hour a day job as an investment banker left little time for anything else. Trying to squeeze in time for Diwali gift shopping would have been the proverbial last straw. That’s when he decided to ‘outsource’ his errands.
“I have nothing to worry about now,” smiles Arora. “I have outsourced my gifting and shopping requirements to a local errand service company.”
Arora is among the many Mumbaikars too caught up in the rat race who are seeking help from professional concierge and errand service companies to plan their Diwali festivities — be it getting houses cleaned, sending gifts, or buying sweets, Rangoli, diyas and crackers.
Bharat Ahirvar, founder of MyPeon, an errand service firm in Bandra, says his clientele has been largely placing Diwali-specific orders in recent days. “Our calls have doubled in the last 20 days. We receive at least 25 orders related to Diwali festivities each day.”
The demand for such services, claims Ahirvar, has shot up this year, thanks to the convenience factor. “Markets are crowded. Commuting has become a nightmare and nobody has the time [to shop]. This is where we come in.”
Nikita Singhania, the marketing and operations head of a city-based export firm, agrees. She had approached the company with a chock-a-block Diwali itinerary. “I wanted to get my house cleaned, buy bells, candles and decorative items as well as get sweets and gifts delivered. I got everything done in just four to five days for less than Rs2,500.”
Chachii.com has its hands full with house-cleaning orders, for which it charges between Rs1,200 and Rs3,000.