TERMS & CONDITIONS – as set by the Guild of British Tourist Guides
My fee structure is based on a half day rate (4 hours) and a full day rate (up to 9 hours).
Where services are required for one-day excursions which depart from London, it is customary for such tours to finish back in central London by 19.00 (and for a one hour lunch break to be provided during the day).
Higher rates may be requested for customised tours, or tours that require a good deal of preparation or specialist knowledge, due to a client’s or tour operator’s specific requirements.
Where services are required in addition to the above, an extra hourly fee will be applied which will be agreed in advance. Please note that to keep fees competitive, morning tours will normally need to finish within central London by 13:00 and afternoon tours start after 13:30. Central London is normally regarded as being within Zone 1 as defined by Transport for London. If travel back to Zone 1 is necessary at the completion of a tour and there is not sufficient time to return to Zone 1 to undertake an afternoon tour, then the tour may have to be regarded as a whole day booking.
Clients should expect to pay the same level of daily remuneration for extended tours as for single days which require a maximum of 9 hours a day guiding. Extra amounts will normally be charged if the hours of work exceed 9 hours in a day. Guides will normally expect to be provided with all meals, or alternatively with suitable expenses in lieu over and above the daily fee. They are also entitled to expect that suitable overnight accommodation, in a single room, will be provided or the costs of obtaining such a room will be reimbursed.
Specialist Museum & Gallery Guiding Services
Where specialist half-day museum or gallery visits are undertaken, it is usual for a full-day fee to be payable.
It is the norm within the travel industry that if an engagement is cancelled by a client 7 days or less before the tour is scheduled, that 50% of the negotiated fee is payable. If the tour is cancelled within 48 hours of the scheduled start, then the full fee is payable. These rates apply equally to the guide, when a guide has to cancel and a suitable replacement guide cannot be provided.
Similarly, when an extended tour is cancelled with less than one month’s notice, the guide is entitled to claim 50% of the daily touring rate if alternative work on the same dates is not offered.
Additional increments of 50% may be requested for tours involving Double Decker Coaches and for coaches with more than 55 passengers. In the interests of safety, a single guide should not be expected to conduct visits to sites if the group to be guided exceeds 50 (in such cases, a second Guide should be engaged).
Often individual sites will restrict the number of visitors they permit to enter their premises in a group, similarly some sites impose restrictions on where guides may talk to clients. If the proposed programme is fully discussed with the guide in advance, advice can be provided on where such restrictions may be an issue requiring additional guides or alternative solutions.
It is normal for an increment of 50% to be charged for tours taking place on the English public holidays of Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Easter Monday, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Tours taking place on Christmas Day usually attract an increment of 100%.
All vouchers, or cash, to cover all disbursements required to be made during the tour should be provided before the start of the tour by the tour operator.
Travelling expenses (including parking fees etc) incurred when there is a requirement to collect groups from airports and locations outside London (i.e. outside Zones 1 or 2 of Transport for London’s network) should be covered by the client. In the interests of their personal safety, if the guide is required to be in place to start a tour at very early times or to finish late (e.g. outside of 07:00am or after 23:00pm) and travel by public transport is not suitable, it is expected that the full cost of taxi fares will be reimbursed.
On a coach tour there must be a seat provided with a safety belt, and a working microphone and PA system. If there is no working microphone/PA system provided, the operator will be informed as soon as possible. If the tour continues without a working microphone the norms for the industry indicate the guide is entitled to be paid an increment of 100% of the original fee until the omission is rectified.
Properly presented invoices will be submitted to the client, at the conclusion of each engagement. Invoices will separate fees from claims for disbursements, will be properly itemised and have receipts attached where appropriate. Full settlement is usually expected within 28 days of the invoice being submitted.
From time to time, guides may agree additional Terms & Conditions with clients.