Becoming a tour guide abroad can be an exciting career. A career that allows you to indulge your love of travel, visit places with strange-sounding names, and soak up the local history and culture. However, if you have your heart set on becoming a tour guide abroad, you may be faced with some challenges.
In this article, we teamed up with experts from job aggregator Jooble to take a closer look at some of the unique challenges associated with finding a job as a tour guide abroad.
Working as a tour guide abroad certainly sounds exciting, but at the end of the day, it’s still a job – a job that comes with its own unique set of responsibilities and challenges. Let’s take a look at some of the more obvious challenges faced by tour guides who want to work in a foreign country:
The language barrier:
This might be the biggest challenge for English-speaking tour guides planning on working in non-English-speaking countries in Europe and elsewhere in the world. Communication is obviously a vital part of tour guiding, and language barriers can make it difficult to interact with both tour groups and locals.
Tips on overcoming the language barrier:
· Language classes: The best way to overcome the language barrier is to learn the language of the country you’re planning to work in. There are many online language courses that allow you to learn at your own pace.
· Translation apps: If you can’t speak the language, you could use an app such as iTranslate Voice that instantly translates spoken English into the foreign language of your choice. It supports over 40 languages. This could be a useful way to help you communicate with the locals (providing your tour groups speak English).
· Phrasebooks: Phrasebooks are another handy resource. They contain commonly used phrases in the local language, along with their English translations. You can either use a physical phrasebook or a digital version on your phone.
· Legal requirements: Tour guides working abroad may need to obtain work permits or visas, which can be complex and time-consuming. Ensure that you have all the necessary paperwork before applying for a job.
· Irregular hours: Be prepared to work long and often irregular hours, such as day trips to places of interest as well as sightseeing at nighttime.
· Cultural differences: Every country has its own customs, traditions, and cultural norms. As a foreign tour guide, you should be aware of these and respect the differences.
Research the Destination
Once you’ve decided on the country you’re planning to work in, learn all you can about the country, its history, culture and customs, and tourist attractions. Read up on the country as much as you can either through travel books and brochures or by doing research online.
Tour guides are required to have some form of certification or training in most countries, and may be required to complete a course or exam as well as be licensed or registered with a local authority.
How To Find Work As A Tour Guide Abroad
Finding a job as a tour guide abroad may be somewhat challenging, but there are various practical ways to go about it. Here are some tips:
· Contact tour companies directly and inquire about job opportunities. You can find these through online searches and industry publications.
· If you’re already residing in a foreign country, try connecting with locals, the ex-pat community, or fellow tour guides in the area. They might have inside info on job opportunities.
· Check job boards such as Jooble as well as websites that cater to the tourism industry. Some job sites specialize in international jobs.
· Join professional associations and attend tourism industry events to meet travel agents and tour operators.
· Consider creating and marketing your own tours at home and taking tour groups abroad. This will require a more entrepreneurial mindset but can be a highly rewarding way to turn your job into a rewarding business.
Working as a tour guide abroad requires a combination of people skills and ingenuity, as well as a passion for travel, history, and culture. However, this type of career means that you can indulge your love of travel and adventure while meeting people from all walks of life – and working in a fun and relaxed setting. Sounds like a dream job, doesn’t it?
Becoming a tour guide abroad can be an exciting career that allows you to indulge your love of travel, while visiting places with strange-sounding names, and soaking up the local history and culture. In this article, we take a closer look at some of the unique challenges associated with finding a job as a tour guide abroad.