Tour guide? What a fun job! You get to help happy vacationers explore and offer them interesting insights into your town. No wonder you want to work in this field. It’s time for you to find your next great tour guide position. You’re part entertainer, part customer service representative. A five-star tour guide resume illustrates both those qualities and your regional expertise.
How do you show off those diverse skills in a one-page document?
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This resume guide, along with the corresponding tour guide resume example will cover the following topics:
- What does a tour guide do?
- Tips and tricks for writing a tour guide resume
- The best format for a tour guide resume
- Advice on each section of your resume (summary, work history, education, skills)
- Professional resume layout and design hints.
What does a tour guide do?
Tour guides take information about a worthwhile attraction and make learning about it fascinating and fun. They may work at one tourist site or travel with on a group tour throughout a region or country. Their job may entail daily excursions or lengthy trips, depending upon where they work or what clients they serve.
Tour guides assist clients with travel and touring in unfamiliar areas. They use their knowledge of a place to help plan trips and points of interest. They typically serve clients who are first time visitors to a place by providing them with information and assisting with all aspects of travel and entry. They may provide recommendations for restaurants or other interesting sites and help if there is a problem with a hotel room or other travel service.
Some tour guides work for themselves, while others work for larger tour companies. They may specialize in one destination or travel to many sites. They are responsible for researching the destinations before travel to ensure that they educate their clients and enhance their visiting experience. Tour guides utilize excellent communication skills to plan fun and informative tours for their clients.
How to write a tour guide resume
Although this profession requires creativity, the structure of your tour guide resume is not the place to show it off. Stick to the standard and develop the following components for your CV:
- The resume header
- The resume summary (aka profile or personal statement)
- The employment history section
- The resume skills section
- The education section
Choosing the best resume format for a tour guide
Typically, resumes follow a reverse chronological order format. That means, you list your most recent position and work backwards from there. This resume format, which mostly affects your work history section, is the way to go unless your career falls into a special circumstance. As a tour guide, you may have had different roles within the travel industry or maybe you are an aspiring actor or performer who uses tour presentation to hone your skills.
In those cases, or if you have changed careers, are just starting out or are a seasoned professional, you may consider the other resume formats we suggest as chronological alternatives or hybrids. We do not recommend the functional resume style as it is typically reserved for niche technologists or scientists because it highlights skills over work experience.
Overcome the Applicant Tracking System
A fabulous tour guide resume is a start, but if you don’t understand Applicant Tracking Systems, or ATS, it may never get into the hands of a hiring manager. These software programs scan, sort and assess resumes for human resources departments looking for keywords and phrases the employer has pegged to the job.
The best way to ensure that your resume won’t get filtered out is to understand what your prospective employer wants. Analyze the job listing, carefully highlighting keywords and phrases within it that you can then use in your resume.
Use the phrase as it appears exactly. Spell out and use any acronyms just in case.
The job market for tour guides
The travel industry has been and continues to be hit hard by Covid, and what the future will look like is still unknown. One thing is for sure: tour guides in all areas of travel will have to be cognizant of social distancing and other safety aspects of travel.
Many public sites are open with restrictions, so tour guides who work in theses spaces will still be in demand. It remains to be seen whether tour groups outside travelers’ “social bubbles” will continue to operate.
Here are the industries with the most tour guides and their annual mean income as of May 2020*.
|Museums, historical sites, and similar||$29,440|
|Travel arrangement and reservation services||$36,960|
|Amusement and recreation||$32,320|
|Scenic and sightseeing land transportation||$34,130|
*Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Resume summary example: talent showcase
You have your best shot at demonstrating your ability to captivate an audience with the summary (AKA profile) section of your tour guide resume. This freeform paragraph needs to answer the all-important question: Why should I hire you?
Introduce yourself with powerful, positive language. Feel free to get a little creative, but don’t go overboard. Maintain a professional tone throughout. Remember that you will be representing the company and that your role requires a strong customer service component. If you have knowledge of the city or site you will be working in, let your prospective employer know.
This open-ended section of your resume may be the most difficult to compile. If you need more inspiration, check out these related resume samples. For the creative side, click on our theatre resume sample or our actor resume sample. If you are looking for your first tour guide position, try the career change resume example. The freelancer resume example will help if you are applying for a contract role.
You will find a tour guide resume example summary below.
Energetic and resourceful tour guide with several years of experience accompanying clients on trips and to various locations in different parts of the world. Adept at performing research in an effort to make optimal travel plans. Experienced in organizing itineraries according to time frames, weather, and events. Dedicated to providing clients with the best customer service and travel experience possible.
Employment history sample: your career itinerary
How do you impress with a bulleted list of job responsibilities? Change the way you think about it! The employment history section of your tour guide resume is not a list of responsibilities, it is a declaration of your career achievements.
Think carefully about the role you seek and address the needs of that position by showcasing what you have already done that demonstrates your ability to do the job well. Your tour guide resume is your opportunity to tell prospective employers what you can do for them. That means proving that you have what it takes to fill the role, and enhance it, with minimal training time.
Be a STAR
An easy-to-follow format for making the most of your employment history items is the STAR method:
- Start with the situation
- Describe your task
- Relate the action you took to solve the problem
- Detail the results you achieved.
You will find a tour guide employment history resume sample below.
- Greeted clients and developed itineraries based on interests and needs.
- Escorted clients through the real working movie studios.
- Provided clients with informative literature and provided access to special departments.
- Showed clients around different points of interest and answered any and all questions to the best of my ability.
CV skills example: the quick tour
Before a traveler books a tour, they may want to see the highlights at a glance so they know whether to read on. Recruiters use the same mindset when they scan CVs. The skills section gives them an easy way to filter out CVs that don’t fit their needs. That’s why you need to curate this section carefully. Choose a mix of hard skills, such as first-aid qualification and language skills, and soft skills like those listed below.
A tour guide needs the following qualities, according to WeTravel:
- Communication: Both listening to and engaging clients
- Detailed knowledge of the area: A great tour guide goes beyond memorizing key facts and delves into entertaining stories and obscure information
- Charisma: Charm can help make even the longest traffic delay seem like a fun activity
- Improvisation: Weather, the aforementioned traffic, long lines at tour sites, a client who oversleeps are all situations that call for tour guide improvisation
- Extreme organization: Details and structure can make or break a tour
- Empathy: It’s a tour guides job to make sure everyone, even the most difficult to please, are having a good time
- Create group cohesiveness: Your goal should be to take a bunch of strangers and turn them into a group in which everyone feels comfortable
- Patience: How many times can you answer the same question? You’ll find out.
You will find a skills resume sample below.
- Excellent Communication Skills
- Multilingual Skills
- Guided Tour Planning
- Creative Problem-solving
- Effective Communication Skills
- Travel Knowledge
- CPR and First Aid Certified
Tour guide resume education example
There are no formal education requirements for tour guides, although most in the profession have a high school diploma. In this section, you may simply list your diploma and any higher level degrees you have.
If you have taken any classes that are directly related to the travel and tour industry, list those here as well.
See resume example for an education section below.
- University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla., bachelor of communications, Aug. 2006-May 2010
- Jacksonville (Fla.) High School, diploma, Sept 2002-May 2006
Resume layout and design: picture perfect
Helping tourists find the perfect Instagram shot is part of your job, so you understand how important visual impressions are. Make sure the landscape of your resume is just as awe-inspiring. Here are some principles to keep in mind:
- Keep your design looking professional with aligned text and ample margins
- A splash of color is eye-catching; too much color is distracting
- Ensure your contact information and section headings stand out by using a bold font
- Consider using a professionally-designed resume template to avoid formatting mistakes.
Key takeaways for a tour guide resume
- Tour guides must be entertaining and your profile is a great place to exhibit that skill.
- Target each CV to the job you seek. If you know something about the place you will be showcasing, make that known.
- Check out our tour guide resume sample for more ideas on creating a great page layout.