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Connecting Through Understanding

Connecting Through Understanding: The Tour Guide’s Secret Superpower While extensive destination knowledge is essential, what elevates great tour guides is distinctly emotional — keenly sensing personalities and curating revelatory adventures

Joseph Spaid

After decades of creating special effects for film, tv, and advertising I chose to fulfill my dream of becoming a professional travel guide – a dream that was inspired by a realization my mother had while she and I were traveling together in Italy. My first step was to get ITMI-certified. That was followed by two years of careening across the US as an Adventure Travel Guide leading budget tours for young Europeans. These were extremely demanding, high responsibility trips, but they allowed me to learn countless destinations while accruing a huge amount of cockpit hours very rapidly.

Is Someday Today

How often have you daydreamed about leading groups on overseas adventures? Of swapping spreadsheet monotony for ancient ruins and beachside sunsets? For many, tour directing summons a siren’s call – one silenced by self-doubt’s nagging refrain. But the common excuses holding you back likely ring hollow when you trace their roots.

A Passport to Understanding Our Shared Humanity

In a world that often feels fractured by division and conflict, the simple yet courageous act of travel can foster unity, compassion, and peace. Our sense of interconnectedness grows when we open our minds, hearts, and eyes to explore new cultures and lands. We begin to see that beneath the surface differences in language, customs, or religion, all people share a core humanity. 

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30 TRAVEL CAREERS eBOOK 2023