Training the Key to Unique and Unforgettable Travel Experiences
As we all know, in the travel industry it takes a dedicated team to ensure the best travel experience for one’s clients. At Khiri Travel we therefore conduct regular guide, tour leader and product training sessions to make sure our teams in the destinations we cover are prepared and ready to handle all scenarios.
As we approach the end of the year, here are a few things we have been doing in two of the Khiri Travel destinations we cover, namely, Thailand and Vietnam.
TOUR LEADER TRAINING
Khiri Travel has been a specialist in group travel since the founding of the company and we take pride in providing awesome group experiences in the region, tailored for all budgets and all types of groups.
Traditionally when leading a tour, a foreign tour leader joins the group – working together with local guides throughout the trip. This is still very common, especially for those agents that value having a tour leader who speaks the same language and understands the culture of the travelers. Family travel is still growing and therefore it makes sense to have a foreign tour leader that can communicate with younger children in their own language. However, unless an agent focuses on the above, Khiri Travel is hugely in favor of local tour leaders – experienced guides that take on the role of both local guide and tour leader.
Many people think a guide is the same as a tour leader, but differences are not to be underestimated! Tour leaders often take part in trips that are much longer and involve a larger number of travelers in the group, than when working as station guides. Three-week trips with as many as 24 travelers are not uncommon and require a very different set of skills and knowledge than being a local guide for FITs on shorter trips.
To prepare our aspiring guides who want to become tour leaders – and to train our current tour leader to become the best in their field – we conduct regular training sessions for them. This year we focused on Thailand and Vietnam, since Thailand welcomes the highest number of groups and Vietnam is growing in this area of the business and will therefore require more local tour leaders.
Our training sessions in Thailand and Vietnam, which took place in June, varied from basic tour leader training to discussing current itineraries and role-plays where both office staff and guides joined in to re-enact several scenarios based on real experiences. These sessions were a great success and helped participants to understand scenarios that can arise, not necessarily from language problems, but because of cultural differences.
PRODUCT AND GUIDE TRAINING – THAILAND
March was the perfect time for some of our most experienced guides and office staff to join Khiri Travel Thailand’s product training sessions in preparation for a new high-end agent. Since sharing is caring, a few of our young and promising guides tagged along to learn from our more experienced guides.
Areas of training focused on site inspection, classroom training and discussions – with a focus on the new agent and other high-end clients. All together it was a great opportunity for office staff and people in the field to fine-tune their responsibilities and to understand their colleagues better.
PRODUCT TRAINING FOR GUIDES AND OFFICE STAFF – VIETNAM
Vietnam received the last training of the year in November focusing on basic guide training for the new generation of Khiri Travel guides, together with more specific training for Khiri Travel’s signature experiences. These experiences are unique to Khiri Travel and require a specific kind of knowledge to ensure that guides and office staff run and sell these programs the way they should. Because participants in the training were a mix of young new guides, experienced guides, and office staff, this was a great opportunity to share knowledge and learn from each other.