First of all, I’d like to thank you for visiting babelyo.com. It means, I just successfully promoted my lovely island: Bangka.
My name is Lia, the founder of BabelYo. I was born and attending schools in Pangkalpinang; the capital of the Province of Bangka Belitung Archipelago. I continued my higher education in Yogyakarta, Java. Many times when I introduced myself and mentioned my hometown, people replied: where is Bangka? Such experience makes me really want to introduce Bangka to people around the world.
BabelYo stands for Bangka Belitung, Yo! It’s an invitation to you all: let’s explore Bangka and Belitung archipelago!
A few months after I graduated from university, I got a job in an international NGO (non-government organization), based in Denpasar, Bali. The NGO worked in tourism development. It gave me a lot of practical knowledge in tourism. At the same time, it encouraged me more to take part in tourism development in Bangka Island.
In 2015, I started offering tour packages to Bangka and Belitung Island. Slowly I got inquiries from domestic travellers. They come mainly from Jakarta, while the rest were from Palembang and other regions of Indonesia. We’ve been serving various groups of guests since then, ie. family, a group of employees. We also served some international visitors, which is very rare. They were a couple or solo travellers that accidentally visit Bangka for business purpose.
In 2017, I decided to incorporate my business as PT Kawan Jalan Indonesia and registered it to the Association of the Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA). Joining the association was a favorable decision. I have more contacts from reliable tour companies all over Indonesia. It helped my team members and me to expand our products and services beyond the province of Bangka Belitung.
I’m always passionate about social enterprise. The idea of being a social enterprise paved a foundation for BabelYo. We’d love to integrate tour products/services of community-based initiatives into our catalogue because most of them are lack of marketing network. Social activities delivered by BabelYo are not simply a corporate social responsibility (CSR) program either. BabelYo is dedicated to supporting Paramarta (playgroup and kindergarten) to provide good quality education for children in Pangkalpinang with affordable fees. You are more than welcome to volunteer at the school; for instance, talking or singing with the children in English to encourage them learning English more.