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Tour manager careers

Responsible for organising and accompanying groups, Tour managers ensure that travel arrangements run to plan, and that accommodation, meals and service are up to standard. Tour managers typically work on coach trips - these can last anywhere from two days to over a month. Other opportunities exist on rail trips or cruise ships.

While there are no set entry qualifications, a good general education is necessary, especially in areas such as geography, history and history of art. In addition, fluency in languages, particularly Spanish, Italian, French, Greek or German, is normally required for tour managers working overseas. Experience of working with people or working abroad is also useful.

There are a variety of travel and tourism qualifications available for those interested in working in this filed, including:

  • AVCE in Travel and Tourism
  • SQA National Modules in Tourism or Travel and Tourism and Higher National Certificate or Diploma in Travel and Tourism
  • BTEC Higher National Certificate or Diploma in Travel and Tourism
  • Degrees in travel and tourism
  • Postgraduate courses in tourism

Almost all reputable operators will provide an induction course for new employees. This allows them to become familiar them with the company, and learn about the main destinations, the company policies and procedures, and issues relating to health and safety. These courses usually run from one to four weeks.

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