New Orleans, Louisiana - Educational System for Tourist Guides by Bobbie Gattuso

The United States does not have a National Plan for tourism. It is handled by individual states and cities. I live in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. We are one of only a few cities in the United States that does license guides. Our educational requirements are not nearly as strenuous as those in England and Scotland. Basically the city charges for testing and if you pass you are required to pay for a drug test and a background test before your license is issued. The test is 150 fill-in-the-blank questions about the History and Culture of New Orleans and the surrounding area. Most prospective guides do take a course at the local Community College. In additional to lectures, guides take weekend tours and are required to prepare a part of a tour each week for presentation to the class. The system is far from adequate and our local Tour Guide Association is working with the City to hopefully raise the bar to a higher level. The process is slow but we are making some headway.

Bobbie Gattuso
Tour Guides Association of Greater New Orleans (Louisiana) USA