WFTGA News

UGANDA - Successful Bird Guide Training

For many years, Uganda has suffered from the lack of recognised trained Bird Guides. This made Uganda an unpopular destination to many who would be interested in Birding. The Uganda Bird Guides Club, together with Nature Uganda and Uganda Breweries Ltd. Has been working on overcoming this long-time problem.

It all started in 2001, when a fund raising drive was started through Kampala on Birding Big Day. Over US$3,000 were raised. One of the two people who underwent a Training the Trainer course in South Africa was Herbert Byaruhanga, who was also instrumental in the Uganda Safari Guides Association joining WFTGA. Together with a colleague, he later trained site guides at Lutembe, Mabamba and the Heritage Trails of Buganda Kingdom. At the beginning of June 2002, after weeks of intensive training, eight new bird guides were awarded their certificates by the Chairman of Nature Uganda. Before gaining proper accreditation, the bird guides will be re-assessed by assessors from abroad.

The recognition of Bird Guides is seen by many as the first tremendous success of the Ugandan tourism industry in the effort to offer quality guiding. Many different experience-based itineraries are being designed to suit the birding desire of clients. For more information, please contact Nature Uganda at eanhs@imul.com, or the Uganda Bird Guides Club at ugandabirdguides@hotmail.com.

Posted: 07/21/03

UNITED KINGDOM - Institute for Tourist Guiding launched

The Department of Trade and Industry, with the support of the Department of Culture, the English Tourism Council and the Wales Tourist Board has given its final approval for the establishment of the Institute of Tourist Guiding. The establishment of the Institute is considered by many inside and outside the profession to be the most important development in the tourist guiding sector since the introduction of the Blue Badge over fifty years ago.

Kim Howells, Minister for Tourism, who hosted the official reception in the Palace of Westminster, said: I welcome the creation of the Institute of Tourist Guiding. I am sure that its status will raise the profile of tourist guiding, give the profession a much higher standing and raise standards of tourist guide training across the country. The qualification structure for the entire profession will ensure uniform standards of course accreditation and examinations and encourage best practice.

Posted: 07/21/03

Turkish Colleagues have launched a new magazine: Crossroads

In order to increase the image of tourist guides we had decided to publish a very prestigious magazine. It is out now. Its name is Crossroads. It is a bilingual magazine (English and Turkish). It consists of 100 pages, high quality material, photos etc. The circulation is 30.000 copies. We mostly deliver it free of charge. It cost us more than 35.000 US Dollars. We got some advertisements to lower the cost.

I wish we could do a similar one for WFTGA.

If you would like to take a look at the electronic version of our magazine,
please click here. You can read it with your adobe acrobat reader.

Thanks,

Serif Yenen
President
TUREB-Federation of Turkish Tourist Guide Associations

Posted: 07/21/03

Yossi Grau's Grave

Posted: 07/21/03

Consumer Rights of Tourists at the International Level and the Role of Tourist Guides - By John J Downes

EMITT/TUREB
Congress at TUYAP Exhibition Center
4 April 2003
Consumer Rights of Tourists at the International Level and the Role of Tourist Guides
By John J Downes
Reader in International Travel Law,
University of Abertay Dundee
President of IFTTA
Introduction

“Ay, now I am in Arden; the more fool I. When I was at home I was in a better place; but travellers must be content”. But travellers have not been so content. There has been a steady rise in litigation in North America, Europe and Australasia in recent decades and South Africa has been experiencing it too. In the USA, Thomas Dickerson, New York judge and Travel Law writer, has written numerous articles with titles such as “Travel Abroad, Sue at Home”, “Going to a Convention or Reunion? Don’t Forget to Pack a Law Suit”, “Taking Your Travel Agent on a Trip to the Courthouse”. In Germany, travellers are provided with a leaflet entitled “Your Rights Go with You on Holiday”. Travel agents and tour operators might think that legislators and judges had it in for them; and they might be right.

In 1983, at the First International Congress on the Legal Aspects of Travel and Tourism, Dr Jose Fosman, my predecessor as President of IFTTA, gave a paper entitled ‘Don’t shoot the tour operator’. The gist of Dr Fosman’s paper was that consumer protectionism was getting out of hand and that it would become self-defeating in that it would lead to travel agents giving a much more reserved service, reluctant to say anything or give any advice to the consumer for fear that what they said would be taken down and used in evidence against them. The increased liability would inevitably lead to higher costs for the tour operator that, in turn, would be passed on to the consumer. Dr Fosman cited several recent cases in which the courts took a very pro-consumer stance in travel cases.

Posted: 04/04/03

9TH WFTGA CONVENTION IN SCOTLAND 2003

The Convention was a big success and congratulations are due to all the members of STGA who worked long and hard and came up with so many wonderful ideas. The final dinner at Stirling Castle was a truly inspiring occasion and much appreciated by all participants. We should particularly thank Ros Newlands and her committee, Wilma Kelloe, Mary Kemp Clarke, Fiona MaClaurin, Jan Philip, Sally Spaven and Doreen Boyle as the ever-present Administrator, for their tremendous efforts.

The Scottish Convention was dedicated to Jane Orde who was our second President and a fine Scottish guide. She was always eager to encourage guides from developing countries to attend our conventions and very aware how difficult it was for them to realize the necessary funds. Thanks to the Androus Foundation which generously donated funds to set up the Jane Orde Scholarship, this year we were delighted to welcome the first two recipients of the Scholarship from the Gambia Mr. Seriff Mballow and from Guatamala Victor Jos� Leal Estevez.

The auctions-silent and live-raised £3,137. A proportion of this was put aside for the Jane Orde Fund. We also held a raffle which raised £503 for the Fund. During our meetings money was also pledged. Howard Chan from Hartco pledged personally an equal amount to that raised by one of the Hartco contributions to the auction, Morocco pledged $100 per year. Turkey pledged $100 per year during Serif Yenen's president of his association, Aladdin Khalifa, Area Representative for North Africa and the Gulf and a member of the Association in Egypt pledged $50 annually from his own pocket and the Androus Foundation promised to match the WFTGA auction contribution. So the Jane Orde Fund has received a significant increase. However, we hope that each association will add a small amount per member towards the fund when they renew, their membership.

This fund gives the opportunity to tourist guides from developing countries attend WFTGA conventions. Please keep this in mind.

Please click here to see a photo album of this convention

Posted: 01/31/03

National workshop in Indonesia

On October 4-6, the Indonesian Tourist Guide Association arranged its 6th National Workshop, which was attended by 150 members from all over Indonesia. They discussed about the standards of competence of tourist guides, and the program and courses in 2004. KC Tan, the former president of Tourist Guides Association of Singapore, attended the workshop and told about the WFTGA. He has recently served as the Far East Representative of the WFTGA. KC Tan joined the WFTGA in 1987 in Cyprus, and brought the WFTGA convention to Singapore successfully in 1995. Another guest of the workshop was Mr Gede Ardika, the Minister of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Indonesia. He wants to establish the Tourist Guide Association of Southeastern Asia (SEATGA) very soon. Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia would be the first members of SEATGA.

During the workshop Mr Wisnawa and Mr Rizani were awarded as the men of the year 2003. Both of them were founders of HPI (Tourist Guide Association of Indonesia).

Posted: 10/20/02
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