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How to become tour guide / travel guide

Tour Guide, the term is fascinating to those who love going places and see beauty, culture, arts and architecture. People in west, often go for tour and travel during holidays. Asia is preferred destination among foreign tourists primarily because of rich culture; history and heritage and secondarily because the foreign currency multiply in Asia manifolds.
India is preferred tourist destination among international tourists. Those travelling first time often looks for tour guide / travel assistance. Google Map has cuts many jobs of tour guides. Some years back from now tour guides were required for small tasks like reaching from airport / railway station to hotel and likewise. Those were the times when un-certified tour guide were also in place, in fact huge crowd of self claimed tour guides were there. But now owing to success of Google Map and technology like GPS scenario is different. However, travel industry is booming and hence need for an eligible tour guide shall always be there.

Merriam Webster, my favorite dictionary defines term tour guide as a person who takes people on trips through an area and explains the interesting details about it.

If travel is your passion, helping is your religion and making friends is your way of living, tour guide might be best suited to you.
However, before you start making money as a tour guide, you need rigorous training. And help your there are many government and private agencies.  Many agencies not only help you in training but also provide placement assistance.

Tour and Travel is a huge industry, the passion for travelling shall never die. Considering this fact, institutes, universities, colleges and vocational training centres offers certification, diploma, degree, postgraduate degree program in tour and travel.

Where to get training for tour guide career

  • IATA/UFTAA Training available through all major cities across India
  • University of Delhi, New Delhi
  • Kurukshetra University , Haryana
  • Agra University , Agra
  • Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi
  • Bangalore University, Bangalore
  • University of Madras, Chennai
  • University of Calcutta, Kolkata
  • Goa University, Panji
  • University of Mumbai, Mumbai
  • University of Pune, Pune
  • Himachal University, Shimla
  • Skyline Business School, New Delhi
  • Sita Academy, New Delhi
  • Sri Venkateshwara University, Chitoor
  • Indian Institute of Travel and Tourism Management, New Delhi
  • The Ministry of Tourism, New Delhi
  • Young Women's Christian Association, New Delhi
  • Young Men's Christian Association, New Delhi
  • Sophia Polytechnic, Mumbai
  • Trade Wings, Mumbai

What skills do you need to be a tour guide

Friendly in nature
Willingness to help
Good physical fitness
Excellent communication skills
Willing to take responsibility

How much does a tour guide earn in India

According to rules of Ministry of Labor, Government of India, no agency or company can pay you below minimum wages. If you have just passed a course as tour guide, you may be hired by some company as trainee on stipend. However, if you did a degree program or something similar where training was part of curriculum you will get a starting salary of around Rs 15000 per month. The salary of an eligible tour guide may vary from Rs 10000 to Rs 45000 per month. Also lots depend on your location, the size of organization and your competence and customers feedback. A customer feedback may make or break your job. However, your talent lies in the bitter fact that how you handle a tricky customer.

Why is a tour guide important

Android, Google Maps, Siri and thousands of other apps are there to help a tourist. Then why someone will hire you?
Simple, machines do not match the aroma of a human. Humans need two way communications. Till date machines are lagging in asking anything else. Go to departmental store, buy your drink from a vending machine, it will never ask you, do you want more. Now go to a place where someone serves you, chances are he / she will ask, if you want more.
Other big reason is, data on machines / apps is not considered as reliable. Also available data is not as much accurate as we need it. Tourist need help, companionship and safety. A tour guide is someone who will provide all this to a traveler instantly. This is why need for eligible tour guides shall always be there.

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