Qualities Of A Good Tourists Guide In Uganda
During any African Safari including Uganda tours, you would like to have a knowledgeable, skilled and engaging driver guide hence here are some of the qualities of a good tourists guide in Uganda. This guide gives you confidence about discovering the unknown about the destination you are visiting. While on safari, the driver guide is like your other travel partner especially if travelling on a Solo Uganda Safari. Tourist guides are our ambassadors when it comes to selling Uganda.
They are the contact persons when it comes to conducting a safari for any company because they represent the company and put in practice what was agreed upon in the itinerary. If you employ good guides, chances are that your business will grow since the experience of the whole safari will be positive.
Uganda is fast developing as a top destination in East Africa because of the relative political stability, attractions such as mountain gorillas, beautiful national park, hospitable people among others. Tourism in the entire world is one of the most sensitive exports that are affected by factors like pandemics, political atmosphere among others.
In the same respect, the government is supporting the sector by encouraging public-private partnership, development of infrastructures, creating a conducive environment for the private sector to invest in the tourism industry among others.
How Uganda Tourist Guides Are Regulated
Setting standards for Uganda tourist guides by the government and others stake holders is the only way to kick out masqueraders and unprofessional guides.
In order to create an everlasting experience for the tourists that come to Uganda, a tourist guide is very important and because of this, many associations such as Uganda Safari Guides Association, Uganda Birding Club, Uganda Cultural club among others have been training tourist guides for quite sometime.
It is at this time that we can say that Uganda has quite a good number of individuals who can create a memorable experience for tourists visiting Uganda.
The government through Uganda Tourism Board is in the process of licensing all tour guides so that it becomes a mandate for all tour guide to have a license before doing their job. In order to certify you as a trained and experienced travel guide in Uganda, the Uganda Tourism Board sets timely examination for all guides and who ever will qualify will then be given a licence. All this is aimed at standardising the service offered by guides in the whole country.
Sometimes especially during low seasons, Uganda guides are given refresher courses and organize workshops that usher them into the busy Uganda tourism peak season. This is organize by the different guides associations in conjunction with Uganda Tourism board, which is the tourism regulatory board. Majority have safari uniforms that distinguish them from none members.
Characteristics Of A Good Uganda Tourist Guide
- A guide Need to Be A Good Driver
- A good Mechanic too
- Have Good First Aid information
- A good Guide Must be Knowledgeable
- A good guide must have good time management
- Be In position to Control Clients’ temper on Safari
- Good Guide must Brief Clients Before Starting the Drive to the destinations
- Be In Position To Explain More about the Uganda
- Have Good Hygiene
- Good Sense Of Humor
- Solve Conflict amongst tourists
- Offer Alternative Activities To Tourists
- Offer assistance To Tourists
- Know requirements of the safari
- Ready to overnight Closer To The clients
- A good Driver Guide Must be Courteous
A guide Need to Be A Good Driver
A guide needs to be a good driver. Most companies look to employing a guide who can disseminate information and be in position to drive at the same time. As a guide you should have experience in defensive driving, you must have a valid driving permit and must understand the rules and regulations that govern all drivers with tourist. A tourist should be comfortable with your driving otherwise he/she will be nervous and will not enjoy the tour.
Taking refresher-driving courses to improve on your driving skills, knowledge bout new car technology and upgrade your permit is very helpful for any tourist guide. You are in position to drive any tourist vehicle level based on your driver permit. You become a multipurpose driver guide.
A good Mechanic too
A tourist guide must be a good mechanic. It is not enough to know how to drive but one should have some elementary knowledge about mechanics. This is because most touristic routes in Uganda are in remote areas and in any case, if there is a minor mechanical problem, then he should be able to sort this one out. If for example a vehicle gets a tyre puncture, the driver guide should be able to address this so that he continues with the safari. Guides are therefore encouraged to have these skills.
Even knowing a good mechanic along the way who can work on vehicle problem well and quickly is important for a good driver guide. Being stuck with tourists along the way in the middle of nowhere for very long hours is very unprofessional.
Have Good First Aid information
A good tourist guide should have knowledge about essential first aid. This is because the guide is the person who is always with clients and should any tourist get a health problem in areas far away from clinics or hospitals; the guide should be in position to provide first aid to that particular client. Its for the same reason that every safari vehicle is encouraged to have a first aid box.
Accidents are unexpected injuries but travelling with a driver guide with some first aid knowledge and equipment to use for such emergencies is important. Solving such a dilemma for the clients is very helpful.
A good Guide Must be Knowledgeable
A good guide should be knowledgeable in terms of the countries culture, history, fauna and flora so that he is in position to provide reliable, update and quality information to the clients/tourists on safari. Information or knowledge about the country, birds etc are very important and this is what clients are looking for. Providing the relevant information beyond the safari itinerary is a bonus as long as its not delivered in a boring manner.
A good guide must have good time management
A good tourist guide should be punctual all the time. If it is picking clients from the Airport, the guide should be there in time, if it is time for briefing, the guide should always be punctual. If it is time for game drive and you explained to your tourists that you will be there at 6am, please be there fifteen minutes before.
Most tourists activities go well with great timing an example is the gorilla trekking briefing which happens early morning and no other time. The guide must be in position to advise clients when to get to the briefing point and carry their trekking gears with. In case tourists miss briefing for gorilla trekking or chimpanzee tracking, they may be disqualified from participating in this dream come true safari experience.
Be In position to Control Clients’ temper on Safari
A good guide should be able to control tourists in his group. Sometimes companies organise group tours and each of the joining tourist do not know each other. This means that each individual has his/her own interest, behaviour etc so sometimes it becomes difficult to satisfy each of the tourists in the group. A good tourist therefore should be able to balance and make sure that each of travelling tourists has value for money.
Good Guide must Brief Clients Before Starting the Drive to the destinations
Briefing of clients is very important and all good guides should be able to do this. Upon arrival, tourists should be briefed about the itinerary to make sure that that all is in order. The Guide should be in position to explain the drive time, activities day by day, the accommodation facilities per day and if they have certain services or not and each day, the guide should be able to sit with clients and discuss the program of the next day.
Be In Position To Explain More about the Uganda
The guide should be able to give information about Uganda and make sure that each tourist has the necessary items for the day. If any questions arise, then they should always be addressed to make sure that clients are satisfied. There so many qualities of a good guide and we will continue with this in our next article.
Have Good Hygiene
A good tourist guide must maintain good hygiene conditions. The safari field sometimes is very tiring and dusty which may make someone lazy to clean up. No tourist would feel comfortable to drive in a dirty vehicle on there next day. A person who is sensitive to poor hygiene must be in position to clean up the mess in the car. Even the way the guide driver dresses speaks volumes about there hygiene. A driver guide who doesn’t change there wear may produce an unpleasant body odor at the end of the safari period.
Good Sense Of Humor
A good tourist guide must have a good sense of humor but does not go overboard. Driving your entire safari with someone with a gloomy face as a tourist may make you nerves even to ask questions. It may make you feel insecure since you do not know if the character of the guide driver does not include organizing highway robbery. Being able to create a good relationship with the clients on safari is a personal characteristic.
Solve Conflict amongst tourists
A good tourist guide must be able to solve conflicts amongst the tourists on safari amicably. Conflict amongst the party on safari may be hard to solve creating a rift within the group. This is common especially with scheduled safari groups where tourists booked share no relationship. Siding with one party over another may create conflict amongst tourists.
Offer Alternative Activities To Tourists
A good tourist guide on Uganda safari must be in position to offer alternative activities clients can do during free time outside the organized itinerary. These activities must not alter the flow of the agreed upon itinerary or cause extra costs for the safari organizers. The price of that alternative activity must be within the clients budget and know that paying cash is the only means of exchange to use. Credit cards are rarely used in most transactions in Africa because of the lengthy procedure of obtaining money from them.
Offer assistance To Tourists
A good tourist guide must be ready to offer necessary assistance to the tourists in his company. This is because they are not familiar with the wilderness and the country they are visiting. They may need help in many aspects of life. For example if one wants to withdraw money from an international account, the guide must know how and where to do this even beyond bank working hours. Remember as you go into the countryside, chances of accessing bank services become more scarce.
Ready to overnight Closer To The clients
Staying closer to your clients’ safari accommodation gives them opportunity to always seek assistance from you as there guide. It is one way to create a sense of confidence between the driver guides and the tourists on safari.
Know requirements of the safari
A good guide must know the requirements of any Uganda safari, an example are the gorilla trekking requirements like the gorilla permit, gorilla trekking gears and others. This helps the client to also recap on what they have packed verses what the driver guide is taking about. In case there is chance of buying what is missing before departing the town center them this is very helpful for a good safari like gorilla trekking.
A good Driver Guide Must be Courteous
A courteous driver guide may be the solution to wearied tourists on safari. Tourists have different reason for taking there Africa Safari. One may book a safari to take off life stress at home or work, commemorate a special day, recognize an achievement in life and so much more.
In case the client is not in a good safari mood, the driver guide who is courteous must be in position to stand in the gap of a therapist so that the client can get the best safari experience. Having that gift of helping someone with a what is puzzling them is a bonus.
Even helping a client pack there bags into the car where need arises is a statement on its own. Sometimes clients travel with many bags, which may be heavy to load in the vehicle. Helping them pack is a good gesture instead of just sitting at the steering wheel.
Get in touch with us for more information.