A tourist can easily be wowed by just a good tour guide only until he/she comes across the rare and most sought-after Great Tour guides. A great guide will easily blow your mind as a traveler by how he/she takes care of your needs, how he/she knows how to make your experience memorable. Also, by their patience to your persistent ‘bothering.’
You may be asking; who is a tour guide? The answer is:
A tour guide or a tourist guide is a person who provides help, information on cultural, historical and contemporary heritage to people on organized tours and individual clients at educational establishments, religious and historical sites, museums, and at venues of other significant interest, attractions sites etc. Well, if you’ve never seen one, just take a vacation or even an excursion to Masai Mara in Kenya, and I assure you, the rest will be history.
When starting your tour, a great tour guide would take time to show genuine interest in knowing his clients, whether one or a group of clients, what their names are, where they are from, why they are visiting, their interests, whether there are others on the tour and would introduce everyone on the tour to each other. The best guides spend the tour getting to know the guests on the tour that day and not in an intrusive manner but in a way that shows genuine interest. This could be during a car ride, over lunch, drinks, or as you walk together.
Most guides would just introduce him/herself and do a briefing of what to expect on your tour that day. This is unsatisfactory.
Seeing the Sites
A great tour guide would, a part from all the sites on the itinerary, be open to show a guest additional nearby attraction on request and may recommend new experiences based on the clients’ interests. He may even have some personal must-see favorite places to share with his/her guests
A great tour guide would not drag a client to the stores where he/she earns a commission if the client buys. He instead recommends the best place to shop, eat, or buy that souvenir of a kind.
It is good to be on time and manage the time so that a client knows how long to be at an attraction, what time a client is expected to return and ensure they are back on time.
However, it’s great to be aware of the start and end times of the tour but be flexible and tailor the day based on the clients’ interests and his own/company’s own time constraints. He/ she would never rush you with their own schedules. Of course, other factors always come into play.
A great tour guide not only follows the script and show you the historical background of the attractions, but will be a gifted story teller, passionate about the attraction he/she is showing you. His historical account will take you back in time. With even personal interesting anecdotes of what it’s like to live there including the good, bad and the ugly, and would even Make his/her clients laugh, just like narrating to a long-time friend int own for a visit.
A great tour guide is both very familiar with the destination and would tell his/her clients what makes the place unique and special compared to other countries and cultures; is passionate about travel, understands why a client travels and what it is like to be on vacation and would do everything in his power to ensure a guest is having the best trip ever.
A great tour guide would thank you for your trip and would welcome you back, offers recommendations for other activities to consider during the next visit. May invite you to dinner or some other local events going on during your stay. Great tour guides would never ask for tips. These guys are personable, friendly and most importantly so passionate about traveling and sharing their countries with guests, that their enthusiasm overflows beautifully and naturally!
So if you’ve always thought that just being a good guide is good enough, then you should know that being a better guide is far much better!
Fab weekend and see you next week