International Tour Management Institute (ITMI)

The Premier Training Institute for Tour & Travel Professionals Since 1976

5 Reasons You Are Not Too Old to Be a Tour Director or Tour Guide

Tour Guide AdventuresITMIComment
tour guide age

A traveler's heart beats stronger with each passing mile.

You might not have the energy you once did, but you're wiser about how you expend it. You know that time spent not doing what you love is time wasted.

You've discovered what makes you happiest, so why aren't you doing more of it?

For many, it's about finances. Perhaps your retirement income is less than you'd hoped and you're living lean. A week a year in Mexico is all that fits into your budget. It's nice, but it's not enough. This is your chance to travel the world, to explore different cultures - to live your lifelong dream.

It's not too late.

As a certified tour director or tour guide, you will satisfy your wanderlust and get paid doing it. There is no age limit. In fact, many of the most successful tour directors / tour guides excel by drawing from their life experience and previous careers. Your unique story gives you a perspective no one else can claim. Use it.

Do not let fear of uncertainty hold your dreams hostage. Take the leap (it's not as giant as you might think) and enjoy the fulfillment you deserve.

Here are 5 reasons you are never too old to become a tour director or tour guide:

1) You still love traveling: You've found nothing that recharges you as fully or makes you smile the same way. You appreciate every aspect of the journey - even (maybe even especially) the parts that don't go as planned. Like most passionate travelers, tour directors thrive on unexpected events and chance encounters. Sometimes the most enjoyable, enlightening experiences are not on the itinerary.  

2) You still love meeting new people: If hearing about others' adventures excites you, this is the job for you. You'll develop strong bonds with fascinating individuals both on the motorcoach and off. You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll share favorite hotels and food allergies. You'll connect on a level to which few others are attuned. Warning: the more people you meet, the longer your bucket list will get.

3) You still love teaching: Travel is the greatest teacher in the world, agreed? More often than not, we've learned our most valuable lessons outside of our so-called comfort zones. Effective teaching is less about reciting facts to a tour group and more about motivating them to push their own limits. When encouraged to venture into unfamiliar terrain, whether that means trying a new food or diving out of a plane, the mind truly blossoms.  

4) You still love being active: Sitting around watching TV and waiting to hear from the kids is not for you. You'd much rather be hiking Machu Picchu, bicycling through wine country, or leading a Segway tour through Shanghai. Moving is life.

5) You still love inspiring others: By following your dreams, you inspire others to do the same. You become a shining example of what is possible to those who can see themselves in you. That might mean another 75-year-old retiree, or your own grandchildren. It's never too late or too early to plant the seed and show just how rewarding it is to do what you know you were meant to do.

Still unsure whether tour directing is right for you? Once you apply to ITMI's 15-day Tour Guide/Director Certification program, we schedule a no-obligation personal interview to answer your questions and discuss your expectations. If you and our team determine it's a good fit, we'll begin charting the course of your next life journey immediately. We look forward to hearing from you!