The Government of the Canary Islands describes tour guides as professionals who have the opportunity of having privileged contact with the tourists, teaching them about the islands’ cultural and natural heritage and their traditions, and thus they have the responsibility of not only giving them extensive and veracious information, but also to transmit them the respect and passion for the islands.
It is obvious that the job of a tour guide requires a high degree of involvement, a specific vocation and a passion for the place he has to interpret. This is the only way the tourist/visitor can enjoy the experience as intended. The difference between a good tour guide and a bad one are the comments the visitors make about his job.
The qualification tests for tour guides in the Canary Islands were announced in the BOC No. 250 (Boletín Oficial de Canarias, ‘Official Bulletin of the Canary Islands’) of Tuesday 27th of December, 2016. Here is a short summary of its contents:
When does the period to hand the application start and when does it end? Those interested must hand the application in a period of one (1) month starting on the day after the publication of the offer in the BOC: till the 28th of January, 2017.
What documentation must I bring with me?
- A copy of an identity document: National Identity Card, Passport, Foreigners’ Identity Number, Residency Permit o any document equivalent to those.
- Copy of the Spanish official academic degree, the pertinent certificate from the Ministry for Education or equivalent document (authorised credential of standardisation or proof that said procedure has started).
- Proof of payment of the registration fee for the qualification tests for tour guides, using model 700 for this purpose.
- Specific alleged document to the effects of the exemptions provided for in the eighth base.
- One (1) passport-size colour photograph.
Where will the tests take place?
- The qualification tests for tour guides in the Canary Islands will take place in both capitals; the candidates will be initially assigned the capital of the province they currently live in. Those candidates that do not live in the islands will be assigned, following organisational criteria, to one of the cities to take the test.
- The assignation of the city for the purpose of taking the test will be notified in the provisional list of accepted and rejected candidates. However, those who, for any personal reasons, wish to be assigned to another city, can request a change during the same period stipulated for corrections and deficiencies.
- If the number of candidates justifies it or if it is needed due to other circumstances, some or all of the tests can take place in some of the other islands’ capital cities, leaving the board in charge of taking the convenient measures needed for their development.
What is the programme?
- Unit I. Skills, techniques and context of the exercise. Tourism regulations.
- Unit II. Knowledge of the Canary Island’s natural environment.
- Unit III. Historic, artistic and ethnographic knowledge of the Canary Islands.
- Unit IV. Tourism resources of the Canary Islands.
- Unit V. Languages.
What are the tests’ contents?
The qualification tests for tour guides in the Canary Islands consists on three (3) disqualifying exercises: the first two are about territorial knowledge and the last one about languages. The language test is the only one that can be taken by tour guides who are already authorised and who wish to incorporate or improve languages to their repertoire.
For more information, you can consult the bases here.