How Can a Person Become a Cultural Tour Guide?

Ever since the dawn of the 21st century, more and more people have started to travel than ever before. People from China, Pakistan, and Malaysia, as well as some places you have never heard of,  have started to travel to different parts of the world in search of something new.

Rise of Cultural Tourism

Unlike in the past where people did not have a specific focus for their travels to be about, these days, people are starting to focus on cultural tourism. There is a huge market for cultural tourism as people have become curious to learn about different cultures. Globalization has made it easier to travel to countries which could not have been possible in the past. Countries like Pakistan have opened up their doors to the world and offer e-visa or visa on arrival to people who want to experience the culture.

Now, this has led to many tour companies propping up, and some of the best are Smithsonian Journeys, The Nation, and Spain and Portugal Vacations, which provide interested travelers with a unique experience. Stride Travel provides a search feature for hundreds of tour companies with reviews. Cultural tourism is a gold mine, and if you want to become a tour guide for these tour companies, there are certain steps you can take.

Speak a Different Language

It is important to be able to communicate in different languages. In addition to English, some of the languages that can be useful include Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Urdu/Hindi, and even Afrikaans. If you want to become a tour guide for some of the cultural tourism companies, then it pays to speak a different language. You would be able to guide the tourists on a unique experience and even teach them some of the basics of the language.

Get a Hospitality or Tourism Degree

In order to become a tour guide, it is helpful to get a hospitality or tourism degree. The degree teaches you about the hospitality or tourism sector and how to satisfy the needs of travelers. The tourism industry is one of the largest and if you want a piece of the pie, you need to have the relevant knowledge and expertise.

Get Training

Another great way to become a tour guide is by enrolling in the well-known guide program offered by the International Tour Management Institute (ITMI) in San Francisco. Two-week training periods are provided in the program. There is also an annual symposium in which you would be able to connect with tour companies with guides.


One of the easiest ways to become a tour guide is by interning. It immediately puts you in a position in which you are able to work and gain hands-on experience. Summer is here and most of the tour companies offer interns with a position and even offer a permanent job after completion of the internship program. This is why it is a great idea to give it a try and learn about the tourism industry.

Get Hired as an Expert

If you have an advanced academic degree, you may be able to apply to one of the established tour companies to lead a tour based on your area of expertise.