Why I could never be a tour guide

The tour of former Yugoslavia had a high concentration of quite odd people. You usually get one or two odd bods, but this one had seven or eight. The oddness of these people really brought home the fact that tour guides are very special people – saints – with infinite patience. I could never be one because I would want to slap people with something spiky every few minutes.

A tour guide has to deal with:

People who ask a question – or several questions – about information that was relayed in detail only two minutes prior.

People who, for some unfathomable reason, are unable to a) work out where the meeting spot is after free time and b) get to said meeting spot on time, when this information was communicated very clearly.

People who keep asking for currency conversions so they can work out what, for example, a meal or drink costs in their home currency.

People who want to know if alcohol is included in the tour dinners, when it was specified up front the arrangements for drinks.

People who ask if we are going somewhere that is clearly not on the itinerary.

Other various issues, for example, dealing with lost or stolen luggage, lost or stolen cash/passports/credit cards, illnesses and accidents, rescheduled or missed flights, and people who are just plain difficult and/or demanding.

For those of you who have never toured, watch My Life In Ruins, which is more or less exactly what being on tour is like!

4 Comments

  • georginabarnett September 16, 2013 at 11:20 am

    All of those things occurred when we did a bus trip around Europe. Only we were one of the ones who got lost in our free time and were late getting to the meeting place. EEK! quite scary really.

    Reply
    • dileeshus September 16, 2013 at 2:18 pm

      Why does that not surprise me, G? ;P

      Reply
  • Turkey: highlights and lowlights | The Travelling Homebody September 28, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    […] Turkey is an expansive country: it has a rich and diverse history, and some spectacular scenery. The tour was generally very good, and Izzet – our Tour Director – was exceptionally knowledgeable, as well as generous and clear with information. He is very experienced, but towards the end, I could see he was tired (he kept nodding off on the last day’s drive) and a tad stressed. This was very obvious when we landed in Istanbul, and had to fight traffic to get the hotel in the old part, not to mention dealing with the hotel’s reception area, which wanted all our passports to photocopy (they couldn’t find mine for a while when I went back to pick it up – you should have seen me freak out!). He had just finished three back-to-back tours, and was about to start another, so I am empathetic. How anyone stays fresh and passionate as a tour director/guide is beyond me! […]

    Reply
  • Turkey: highlights and lowlights – The Travelling Homebody December 30, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    […] Turkey is an expansive country: it has a rich and diverse history, and some spectacular scenery. The tour was generally very good, and Izzet – our Tour Director – was exceptionally knowledgeable, as well as generous and clear with information. He is very experienced, but towards the end, I could see he was tired (he kept nodding off on the last day’s drive) and a tad stressed. This was very obvious when we landed in Istanbul, and had to fight traffic to get the hotel in the old part, not to mention dealing with the hotel’s reception area, which wanted all our passports to photocopy (they couldn’t find mine for a while when I went back to pick it up – you should have seen me freak out!). He had just finished three back-to-back tours, and was about to start another, so I am empathetic. How anyone stays fresh and passionate as a tour director/guide is beyond me! […]

    Reply

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