Tour Guide

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The Meaning and Classification of Tour Guide
Description of Today’s Tour Guides

Guides
* The orphans of the travel industry (somewhat hidden within the trade) * Operate independently as freelancers
* Work for agencies or organizations on a part-time basis * Have limited amount of work and income available (due to seasonal and part-time nature of work) * Do not bear the expense of running a small business such as incorporating, advertising, and renting separate offices and equipment * Have “Hidden” status (most often guides are retired, work a second job, or fill other freelance positions such as writing, consulting or teaching)

Definition of Tour Guide

Tour Guide
* Is one who conducts a tour or one with a broad knowledge of a particular area whose primary duty is to inform * Is an individual who is licensed by the local government and accredited by the Department of Tourism to guide tourists, both foreign and domestic, for a fee, commission, or any other form of lawful remuneration (Tour Guide Code of 1987, DOT) * Synonyms for tour guide used within the industry: Tourist Guide (commonly used in Europe and many other parts of the world)/ Local Guide/ City Guide * Outside the tourism industry: the term tour guide is widely used to describe the various professionals who are engaged in guiding people, including tour managers, docents and interpreters Note:

It is difficult to use only one job description for tour guiding because tour guides perform several functions in practically every kind of place one can visit. (Some are self-employed and create and market their own tours, while others are employed by travel agencies and conduct predesigned tours. Though still, others are employed by corporations, or through local, state, provincial or national governments)

* Scope of a guide’s function and expertise varies from tours of a specific piece of art, to a room, to a large metropolitan area, to a region of hundreds of miles * Expertise is usually determined by geography or history (in several parts of the world, it is common for tour guides to have expertise in the culture and history of a broad region; Philippines --- regions of Luzon and large provinces of Mindanao)

Tour Guide – educator; stays with group for only a few hours Tour Manager – administrative/ social role

* In some regions, it is common for guides to remain with a group for several days, in which case the tour guide serves as guide and tour manager which just proves that, “there are no fixed rules about the role of a tour guide”

Types of Guides
- Urban Guides - Tour Managers - Government Guides - Interpreters
- Driver Guides
- Escort Interpreters
- Business or Industry Guides
- Docents or Volunteer Guide - Adventure Guides

Urban Guides

* Those who take pleasure in telling the story of a city or region * Most are freelancers who contract their tour on a tour-by-tour basis * Some are employed by large agencies on a full-time basis * Qualifications, job descriptions, working conditions and other aspects varies in every city or region * In many cities (even those in which tourism is a major industry), there are practically no qualifications or acknowledged standards for guides. This is the case in most cities in North America. In Israel throughout Europe, and in many countries, educational and professional standards are high. “the stricter the standards, the more favorable the working conditions are” (E.g. salaries, benefits and status) * In the US, anyone can be a guide except in cities such as New York, Washington DC and New Orleans as they are required to have licenses * In the Philippines, tour guides must be licensed by the local government and accredited by the Department of Tourism * Urban guides work in a number of...
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