Planning a holiday? The easiest thing to do would be to book a package tour with flights, hotels and sightseeing all preplanned.
However, are you are the type of person who likes to customize your holiday based on your likes, interests and hobbies? After all half the fun of the holiday is in the planning! In such a scenario it’s likely that you start with the easy part of booking your flights and hotels. Then you come to the part of planning what to do what you get there?
At this juncture, there are a variety of resources that can be accessed. Start with reading up all the travel guides both online and offline. At holiday destinations where there is a lot of ground to cover, you might take up the sensible option of engaging a local tour guide who can help you see the local sights and sounds and experience the local gastronomic delights. But how do you find someone who comes as highly recommended as the hotel you just booked?
At this juncture many people ask around their friends for advice based on their experiences. However it would be a big coincidence for you to be able to find a friend who not only has a recommendation to make, but the recommended guide is also free and one who suits your specific requirements!
Thankfully these days there are a few resources that have come up online to assist travelers with this aspect. Take the instance of a website like tourHQ, one is able to see listings of guides available in a particular city, read up all about them, see their past reviews and even contact their past clients to get additional feedback about them, or their skills and expertise. More significantly, many people also use such platforms to plan their itinerary; after all who would provide better advice than the guides themselves to help fine-tune the travel plan?
There are a few other ways people hire guides. One option would be through the recommendations of the hotel concierge. Whilst the hotel would vouch for the service quality in some cases, one should keep in mind that due to multiple layers of middlemen and hotel markups, these might turn out to be expensive propositions. Also engaging a guide at the last minute is not always ideal for travellers who like planning their itineraries well in advance. The other thing people do at times is simply ask a travel agent to get them a guide. In this scenario, the travel agent typically would resort to contacting a destination management company to arrange your guide. Due to the multiple layers built in, not only would your cost go up with each layer of middlemen, but also your specific requirements would likely get lost. For example, if I want a guide who can speak English and Spanish, is great with photography and knows the best places to shoot local flora and fauna, can I really be assured that all these requirements will be treated with equal importance and transmitted successfully to the agent at the destination country to find the right fir for me? It’s a gamble alright!
Finally, there are some people that simply don’t plan that far ahead and wing it; they hire a guide from a bunch of people hanging around a local attraction. There is the least amount of control in this approach, as one is not assured about the skillsets of the guide available on call.
There is so much in the world to see and experience. It usually is the case that we, as travellers do not repeat our Travel Guides to Destinations, holiday destinations, preferring to choose a new one every time we plan our next vacation.
Since we are likely to go to a place only once, don’t leave things to chance! Plan well to gift yourself the best experience from your holiday!
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