HOW DID TOURIST GUIDES REGISTRATION COME ABOUT?
The Tourism Act no. 3 of 2014 defines the scope of tourist guiding and provides a framework for the conduct and governance of the tourist guiding profession
The Act therefore makes provision for establishment of the office of the National and Provincial Registrars of Tourist Guides with clearly defined roles and responsibilities: the development of a Code of Conduct and Ethics for tourist guides; and a framework and procedures for complaints, disciplines, appeals, reviews, prohibitions and disputes.
DEFINITION OF A TOURIST GUIDE
A tourist guide is any person who for reward, whether monetary or otherwise accompanies any person who travels within or visits any place within the Republic and who furnishes such person with information or comments with regards to any matter.' According to the Act, tourist guides must register with the National Department of Tourism by contacting the Provincial Registrar of that particular province in which they live in order to be recognized as a legal guide.
CATEGORIES OF TOURIST GUIDES
There are three (3) categories of tourist guiding namely: Nature, Culture and Adventure.
Nature guides are knowledgeable about the natural environment including in depth knowledge about the flora and fauna of a particular area. A nature guide may specialize in certain fields i.e. conservation area, national parks, nature trails etc.
Culture guides conduct tours with emphasis on cultural heritage. A cultural guide may specialize in certain field i.e. art, township history, cultural experiences in rural villages, museums, historic buildings
Adventure guides conduct guided outdoor recreation leisure activities with an element of risk involved e.g. abseiling, hiking, mountain climbing etc.
Tourist guides are further categorized according to the areas in which they operate e.g. site or provincial guides
A site guide is a person who usually guide within a site only e.g. at Hluhluwe Reserve, Battlefield etc.
A provincial guide is a person who guides in one or more provinces e.g. KZN, Western Cape or Mpumalanga etc.
A provincial tourist guide who is competent to guide in all nine provinces typically referred to as a national guide
CONSIDERING A CAREER AS A TOURIST GUIDE
Individuals considering pursuing a career in tourist guiding must first complete the required training and assessment with accredited institutions before proceeding to register with the relevant Provincial Registrar.
REQUIREMENTS TO BE A REGISTERED TOURIST GUIDE
Provincial Registrars are appointed in each of the nine (9) provinces to register tourist guides. Applicants must satisfy the following requirements before they are considered for registration:
Proof of competence recognized by SAQA
A valid first aid certificate issued by an institution recognized by the Department of Labour
A completed and signed application form accompanied by the prescribed fee
A signed copy of the code of conduct and ethics for tourist guides
Proof of South African citizenship or in the case of an non—South African citizen, a valid working permit granting permission to work as a tourist guide
Four (4) passport size coloured photos
HOW CAN A TOURIST GUIDE BE IDENTIFIED?
Successfully registered tourist guides will receive a badge and identification card (ID). The card will indicate the category of guiding, the site, region in which the tourist guides was found competent to guide as well as any specialties that the guide may possess. Visibility or possession of an ID card is very import because various policing authorities may request the during tourist guide spot checks or upon entry to various attractions