What is a Tour Guide?
A tour guide is someone who leads visitors around an area and shares personal knowledge and information about the location at hand. Tour guides are utilized in all types of areas, especially popular vacation spots and unfamiliar areas. With a strong understanding of the history and surrounding areas, tour guides are able to provide useful information about the location that visitors would otherwise know little about. Popular locations for tour guides to work include museums, landmarks, or tour guide companies.
Since many countries require that tour guides be certified, individuals interested in this career must first find out what the requirements are in their country. To become certified, you will need to take and pass a written test. There is no formal education required to become a tour guide however, so passing an exam is generally all that is necessary. The exams are straightforward and simple and usually don’t require extensive studying or reading. It’s recommended to take the exam as soon as possible so that you can begin working legally.
Tour guides are considered experts, so it’s necessary to know all the details of the area you’ll be touring. If you don’t already know your locale, reading up on books, brochures, and pamphlets can help obtain more information that visitors will find appealing. Organizational skills are also important, as tour guides are expected to handle details, juggle time appropriately, and also point people in the right direction when help is needed. Having a calm and friendly personality is also vital, as visitors will turn to you for all their questions and concerns.
Job and Career Outlook
The average salary for a tour guide is $23,770, although this number can fluctuate based on geographic location, company, industry, and experience. While the career path of a tour guide is fun and adventurous, it can be difficult to find a job during the off-season. Tour guide positions are most plentiful during the summer months and those who speak several languages are most likely to find work during this time. Some tour guides travel around the country in order to stay employed year-round.