A group of 35 individuals from Mahe, Praslin and La Digue, venturing into the tour guiding business, have completed a three-day basic tour guiding course.
They received their certificates from the hands of the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine, Didier Dogley, in a ceremony held on Friday June 22, 2018.
The training provided to prospective tour guides is a collaboration between the Seychelles Tourism Academy (STA) and the Tourism Department.
The role of a tour guide, communication skills, hints on how to interest a client, basic information on flora and fauna, as well as the geography and history of Seychelles, are among topics covered. The training also include a practical session, as a way of putting into practice what they learnt during the sessions.
STA’s Head of the Tourism and Tour Guiding Department, Merna Lajoie, was the main facilitator of the recent training. She received the support of Cecile Payet and Gemma Camille, as well as officials from the Seychelles Ports Authority, who covered various aspects of how the tour guides should go about conducting their business.
When addressing the tour guides, Minister Dogley, called on them to ensure that they relay accurate information to visitors, conduct their business with a sense of patriotism and passion, hence becoming true ambassadors for Seychelles.
He also told them to be innovative and to offer an excellent service and value for money that would get tourists to spend more while holidaying in Seychelles. Minister Dogley noted that his ministry plans to host a conference where various stakeholders will be invited to discuss on ways to increase the country’s tourism yield.
The Chairperson of the newly formed Seychelles Tour Guide Association, Barney Adeline, and the Secretary, Geralda Payet were also present at the certificate presentation ceremony. They took the opportunity to brief the new tour guides about the functions of the association and to offer support to their new colleagues in the trade.
The basic course in tour guiding is one of the most important prerequisites for new applicants wishing to become licensed tour guides. The license is issued by the Seychelles Licensing Authority, and there are other requirements, including a basic training in first aid.