Travelling may be fun, but when reading reviews from some city guide Munich you get unnecessarily scared. Are we loosing our communication skills?
Having myself a 5-star profile as a guide implies and takes a lot of responsibility. If you are coming to Munich, without a guide there is a chance you lose time walking around without much use of it. Although you can use the Internet to help you with navigation, but it’s not the same as having a live person with knowledge on your side. Make sure, that your guide really can speak the local language. In the last years there are coming people to this job, but without any real experience or knowledge about the city, culture or local traditions.
To know something about history is actually eased since we have some material available in internet, but the service of a guide should be more than just repeat what you can read for free. Our service is to combine the available information and present it in a form, that the visitor will not easily forget or get bored. If somebody presents the city to you and speak about general known facts and at the end begging for money is for me a sign, that the person don’t even know for sure if the service has a value.
I receive weekly mails of people asking if they can visit my tours for free, or why my services have a price. That’s why I decided to write this posting.
Analyzing the reviews from platforms like GetYourGuide, TripAdvisor or even Google Business, I recognized that people many times have wrong expectations. Here I deliver you some questions you should ask before getting deceived for the time you invest.
What better defines a city guide Munich?
Experience makes a huge difference. Ask your guide or agency how long the responsible guide is living in the city, if the person speaks German, and the skills that your guide brings. Nobody can know everything, but in your vacation, you should just invest on things that you may enjoy. Some guides are artists (like me), entertainers (well, I’m this too), others are historians, and others just interested in the city. Avoid asking wrong questions to a guide, that has completely different skills. People deceived with the services of a guide are for me similar to people who buy t-shirts without checking the size and discovering, when they come home, that the shirt is three numbers to small.
This tour is just for first visitorsOne Review in a travel platform
Reading this I checked the profile of the traveler and sure the company responsible for the tour. First question I had was, if a traveler already know the city and is an experienced person who believes to be in charge of judge the services, why couldn’t this person ask this before booking?
Of course, all guides have a lot of historic info which all gladly present to travelers, but you receive what you bought. What lead people to be deceived with the result is normally the result of quickly compare prices in queries and think that the quality doesn’t Mather. The less you pay, the less you can ask for quality. You must have a priority. If the price was more important when booking don’t argue with the quality you didn’t paid for.
Guides for Museums
Something that always gives me enough inspiration is visiting museums. I started my guide career as a museum guide in Glyptothek. Museums offer things of enormous historical and cultural significance to see and my explanations got more valuable in content and also on the form to present from year to year. I like to say, that my best presentation will be my last one, when all my experience come to the maximum.
When we visit for instance the Arts-Block (Kunstreal) area in Munich, there will be the Alte Pinakothek and more, but just those who visited those museums can tell you what is really inside. Here, you will be able to see artworks of the Masters of the Renascence and Baroque. There are some Peter Paul Rubens’ paintings, Altdoerfer, Frans Hals, and many other known artists. During workdays, the admission is usually 4 euros or just 1 euro on Sundays, but to have any guide in such an exhibit may be a horrible loss of time. You need the mix of entertainment and knowledge. If you don’t check the references of your guide in advance, you better don’t write any review.
People who don’t know how to conduct in a museum must have a guide to not write reviews like one I read some days ago. If you don’t act as expected, touch what is forbidden to be touched and act like a dancing hippopotamus, definitely you’ll have a full life writing bad reviews.
Stars in a review don’t help any
A review should give an information about what you ordered, how you received information, if the information was correct and if the product (your tour) was exactly what you expected. In case it is not what you expected, how reacted your contract partner? Had they offered a refund?
Reading the reviews, I had the impression, that the guide was being responsible for the lack of information about who was responsible for what. You as a customer must know what you are buying. The company offering the services must have a catalog with the musts from the service. You can’t pay for a FIAT and expect to drive a Maserati.
…We were just two feet from a very large skip exiting the door at the terminus of the trip with no alternative way off the bus. ?? A woman driver ???? She actually backed up to get closer to it??? This was also opposite the Tourist information place at…Women-rights and respect for others are not flexible, please
Sure, nobody likes to have less for the expected, but the online platforms are far too superficial, and they don’t deliver the needed information, like the guide information and background. When you read the reviews there is a big difference to be made between guide and agencies and this is not visible in the many feedbacks. In this case above, David R. invested lots of time to express his respect to women. Is this of any value for your next trip?
When scanning the negative reviews I understood, that first was unclear, who was really responsible for what. Things like “our train came too late…”, sincerely: “What has this to do with the agency or the guide from a tour to Nuremberg?” Enraged lines about how bad the train service was on that day and even worse the weather was too cold, but this has nothing to do with the agency or the guide. This actually does not help anyone, because the statistics deliver in the overview just a value like 3.7 and the detail goes under.
Avoid losing your time and money
Here are some advices that may help you reach your target:
- Invest a little more time asking for the background of your guide.
- Make sure that you informed the agency about what you expect. If they don’t fulfill your expectations, ask for refund.
- Are you doing a tour in a small group? Then ask how many are the guests in your group. Anything over 15 people is not a small group.
Finally, guides are individuals, you cannot just ask for any from a bunch, like you if all of them have to fit to not described quality standards.
And a last word: If you like the service you become, don’t forget to tip your guide. Tipping is not about money, but recognizing the service of your guide.