You have finally decided to take the BIG trip. You’ve done the planning, the meal selection, chosen your activities, now all that is left to do is enjoy your trip right? Wrong! How do you check in at the airport? Where do you meet your buses? Was lunch at Hard Rock on Tuesday or Wednesday? Who is going to manage the cash backs? All valid questions, and all the reasons why we suggest you consider using a professional tour director.
LICENSED AND PROFESSIONALLY TRAINED Lots of people say they are a tour director, but Director’s Choice has partnered with the International Tour Manager Institute (ITMI) to hire licensed and professionally trained tour directors for our complex itineraries. Did you know that in New York and Washington, D.C. you must have a sightseeing guide license to guide or direct people to any place of public interest or to describe, explain or lecture about any location to any participant on a sightseeing trip or tour within the city? All of our guides are professionally licensed, trained and working full time as guides across the United States and internationally. It’s not just their hobby, it’s their job and they take your trip very seriously.
ANTICIPATING THE UNEXPECTED Professional tour directors know that the unexpected is to be expected when it comes to travel. They never trust driving times in New York City or that the rain headed your way will conveniently stop at just the right time. It’s their job to come up with a snowman building contest when your flight is canceled, take an impromptu tour of Central Park when your cruise is delayed or throw an ice cream party at the hotel when you didn’t have time for dessert before your concert started. (All true scenarios from Director’s Choice tour directors.) They have tricks up their sleeves that can save the day and turn a mishap into the best part of your trip.
TRAINED DESTINATION EXPERTS ITMI graduates have continuous opportunities to train and learn more about destinations through continuing education courses. A good tour guide is a sponge and has a zest for learning and travel and they want to pass that along to your students. And, not only can they tell you the history of the Hollywood Bowl, they know where the shortest lines for bathrooms are in Disney World, and can tell you where to find the best bowl of ramen in New York. Great guides are licensed, keep up on the latest travel technology, have a desire to always learn more and have the safety training to make sure your group has an amazing and trouble free trip.
KEEP YOU ON SCHEDULE We want our group leaders to enjoy the trip as much as their students. That’s why having someone else watching the clock and keeping you on track is invaluable. The best tour directors can quickly gauge a group’s interest level in a particular activity and make sure no one is either rushed or bored. Navigating a group of 200 kids through Navy Pier in Chicago takes skill and careful timing. Just calculating the time to get on and off the bus for a photo stop can eat up way more time than you anticipated. So having someone who can continuously make tweaks and adjustments to your itinerary so you arrive to your destination on time and relaxed is invaluable.