Negros Occ. seeks more DOT-accredited tour guides

BACOLOD City – The Negros Occidental Tourism Division has initiated the training of 27 individuals, who will work as tour guides under the provincial government’s efforts to boost its tourism industry.

The Tour Guiding Training Course, being held at the Negros First Negosyo Center in Bacolod City, is conducted in partnership with the Department of Tourism (DOT)-Western Visayas and the Tourism Educators and Movers (TEAM) Philippines-Western Visayas.

Cristine Mansinares, provincial supervising tourism operations officer, said Sunday that tour guides act as representatives of the province and play a significant role in ensuring tourist satisfaction.

They are considered as ambassadors, who will present Negros Occidental in a way that will encourage tourists to come back, she added.

Mansinares said tour guides also serve as information officers by helping tourists understand the culture of the province.

The 23-day training course is conducted every weekend until June 2.

“Through this training course, we hope to encourage the participants to apply for DOT accreditation after they graduate. They will become our back-up manpower during big conventions,” she added.

At present, there are only seven DOT-accredited tour guides in Negros Occidental.

“Given a few number of accredited tour guides, we are having difficulty especially in times of big events like meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions,” Mansinares said.

She said the Tourism Division aims to address the gap through the training course.

The 27 participants included graduating college students, retired professionals, artists and medical doctors, among others.

Mansinares said that aside from the lectures, there will be written and oral exams as part of the assessment.

Familiarization tours, field work, and researches are also included in the modules.

The graduates will receive certificates of completion from the three partner organizations. (PNA)