A step on guide is a person who gets on a bus to give a tour to people he or she does not know. I am a step on guide. As a step on guide you never know what kind of group you will get. Some groups are great. The great groups usually are people that ask questions, are not talking while I am giving the tour, keep their cell phones vibrate and the bus driver has a good knowledge of where the sights are. The middle of the road group trends to take their time getting off the bus, getting back on the bus late, people not staying with group and the driver do not have a clue how to get anywhere. The worst group is no one seems to be in charge, no discipline with students, adults on school trips talking to their husbands back home or talking to their office about work that they haven’t done yet.
Here are some do and don’t about group touring:
- Make sure everyone is physically able to take a tour
- Plan your trip (be very detailed)
- Pick the bus company carefully – (If the bus breaks down will they have one to replace it soon. How well does the bus driver know the city you are traveling to. Have the bus driver check the microphone to see if it is working before the tour starts)
- Have people make all phone calls before the tour starts
- Hire a professional tour guide
- Reseach the places you will be visiting
- Wait in line for tickets for the Washington Monument (get them online)
- If you have a group of students do not go to the National Archives at 10am (wait later)
- Do not wait inline for tickets for a tour of the Capital building. You can get them online at www.aoc.gov
- If you do not like crowds do not come to DC in the spring
Washington is a great place to visit with a group.