The seemingly endless rains of Seattle and Portland. Dallas and Phoenix’s encroaching heat. New York and Atlanta’s oppressive humidity and bugs—or Chicago or Boston’s blizzards. Wherever you’re from, there are times of the year when you seek an escape from your usual climate, a place where you can embrace the new while feeling comfortable in your own skin. If your mind has begun wandering to travel, visiting Santa Monica, California just might fit the bill.
ITMI has become my family. One that has the same passions as me. We all truly love interacting with others, breaking down those barriers just to be human to human. Bringing our unique skills and ideas, we all have our own intimacy with travel, and I am so thankful to have met and get to know these people with same mindsets as me. I am so happy we have officially graduated with our certification!
It all started innocently enough, about a year ago, over pizza. My wife and I had been invited to go on vacation, to Walt Disney World and on a cruise, with two friends….another tour guide and his wife, a meeting planner. For the purposes of this article I’ll call them Jim and Jane, because those are their names.
Just being in the same place at the same time is the best thing of all. As the saying goes, absence makes the heart grow fonder. When we are home at the same time, even doing nothing, we are doing it together. Be it conversations over coffee, a book or a bottle of wine, or holding her hand in sweet silence, life is good.
A hurricane hit Cabo and it wasn't my fault. I’ve been known to throw an unintentional monkey wrench into our plans (more on that later), but this vacation was smooth sailing. Like most of our trips this one was planned to the last detail by my dedicated tour guide and wife.
Every day is a new adventure, one that requires flexibility and an expansive set of skills. Mastery of the basics only goes so far. Exceptional Tour Guides and Tour Directors wear numerous hats to ensure everybody has a positive experience. Variety makes this job one of the most fulfilling in the world.
It may be a strange place for a Canadian to end up for their winter vacation – well, unless you’re a snow bird that is! Due to North America’s sheer size few locals concentrate on their own backyard and instead dream of exotic lands far, far away. So when some fellow tour director friends of mine decided to fly into Las Vegas and drive to Flagstaff for an adventure, how could I say no?
Becoming a Tour Guide and Traveling for a Living: A day in the life of a tour director or tour guide might sound too good to be true. Visiting exotic locales. Exploring fascinating cultures. Meeting amazing people. That’s not a task list characteristic of a typical day job. The truth is, these components make up only part of what it means to embark on this exciting career path. With the glamour and prestige come dedication and hard work. Still, those who have devoted their lives to this noble profession concur that the rewards are well worth all the effort.
While she is on tour I may read a new book, or try cooking a new dish (if it’s successful I’ll make it for her, if it’s not I’ll munch on a Tums and conveniently forget to mention it). If I’m happy and active while she is away, even as I miss her (and I miss her every moment she is gone), I’ll be that much better company when she is at home.
Every person that 2016 ITMI Symposium and Reunion keynote speaker Sarah Elkins met had one thing in common, one thing that made this group extraordinary: Curiosity. Consistent, deeply optimistic curiosity.
Though I have only recently learned the love of travel, as the spouse of an explorer, I have two choices: 1) Support and encourage her wanderlust, or 2) don’t. When it comes to our lives together, I have found that it is much more rewarding to support her wanderlust than to miss the bus.
Despite their differences in education and interests, most tour directors and tour guides share one common characteristic: they're just plain fun to be around.
Many successful tour guides are bright, enterprising young professionals who are channeling their unique interests into lucrative careers.
Here are seven New Year's mini resolutions that will make directors and tour directors happier and better at their jobs.
Terrorists commit heinous acts not only to kill, but also to change who we are and how we think. Their goals are to instill fear in the brave, uncertainty in the confident, and apathy in the passionate. If people become fearful then the terrorists will win. Utilizing travel as our greatest teacher and healing force…We must continue to travel with open hearts, forge new bonds across continents, and build bridges of cultural understanding that cannot be destroyed by fear.
Don't neglect your you time! Here are eight ways to recharge during over-the-road tours.
Here are eight reasons to be thankful for tour directors and tour guides.
Here are five things to remember when speaking in front of a motorcoach tour group or group of your peers.