Adventure Tour Leaders
Nothing beats a free lunch - except perhaps 180 free lunches. Throw in a sunset, an enchanting location and someone else to do the washing up and you would be right to feel that you are indeed a lucky so and so.
Even better is that this can all come guilt free: there will be more than enough moments where you are in the thick of the action, taking charge and doing all the hard stuff while everyone else sleeps or relaxes. For this is the life of an adventure tour leader.
Adventure tour or overland companies, large and small, rumble around countries and across continents carrying a cargo of thrill seeking passengers.
Depending on the set up each tour will consist of a driver and a tour leader. Sometimes the two roles are combined, sometimes there is an assistant or trainee to help out.
Tour Leader / Guide
Tour companies generally prefer their tour leaders to be at least 23 years of age, sometimes older. Applicants should be well travelled already, preferably to some of the destinations where your potential employers conduct their business.
Additional qualities sought include a second language, usually French or Spanish, leadership, communication and organisational skills.
Kumuka Expeditions, for example, ask applications to consider the following points and if any are of concern to give careful consideration before applying:
• Dealing with problems
• Accountability for company funds
• Keeping detailed trip notes and expense accounts
• Looking after customers from different backgrounds
• Being on call 24 hours a day
Driver / Mechanic
Exodus are typical in their requirements for overland expedition leaders: "We need young (25+) people to lead and drive our Overland Expeditions in Asia and the Americas. You must be bright, enthusiastic, like people of all kinds and have an immaculate driving record. A PCV licence is required though it can be obtained during training. Some mechanical knowledge is preferred."
Both tour leaders and drivers should be able and willing to commit to working overseas for from six months to two years.
Companies worth approaching include:
Employers of over 150 leaders, Explore Worldwide is the leading adventure tour operator in Europe, with a wide variety of tours, treks, safaris and expeditions in over 100 countries throughout the world. Applicants must be well travelled, active and resourceful UK residents aged 24+.
Running holidays for 30 years, Exodus offer a wide choice of adventurous and active holidays to all seven continents. They recruit Overland Expedition Leaders, willing to commit to the job for a minimum of two years, to drive overland expeditions in Asia and the Americas.
Kumuka operate overland, coach and public transport tours around the world employing well travelled Tour Leaders and Overland Drivers.
Specialise in tours to Thailand and Southeast Asia. Tour Leaders should have some experience of leading tours or working in tourism and a reasonable knowledge of at least two of the countries in the region.
AmeriCan Adventures offers small group adventure tours for a younger international crowd who want to experience North America.
The Australian tour operator Intrepid Travel look for well travelled, fun, talented, passionate people to lead trips in Asia, Europe or the Middle East.