||Training courses and lectures
To improve the skill and knowledge of the guides, we run training
courses and lectures.
||The training course for the
have been running the training course for the new guides who have
passed the guide test every year since 1963. The sum total of the
participants has reached 8,000. Most of the veteran guides active
in the front lines of inbound tourism in Japan today are the graduates
from the course. Participation fee is very reasonable by the support
from Japan Foundation. If you have passed the test and want to work
as the guide, we strongly recommend you to participate the course.
It is a 5 day course. The first day is a lecture in a class. The
other 4 days are bus tours in which veteran guide instructors teach
you how to guide different sightseeing spots. We have 2 different
courses, Kanto and Kansai courses.
Kanto course visits Tokyo, Kamakura, Hakone, Nikko, and Narita
Airport. Kansai course visits Kyoto, Nara, Osaka, and Kansai Airport.
We had 120 participants for Kanto course and 70 participants for
Kansai course this year.
There are so many things to learn. Not only the basic knowledge
such as rules and manners of the guide, highlights of each course,
how to use hotels, but you also learn more practical know-how through
many episodes of veteran guides. You also have a chance to meet
many friends who have the same purpose.
||The training course for the
We have another course for the regular members every year (usually
2 days bus tour during off season). This course is good for those
who haven't got much career yet or those who have been away from
the job for a long time to improve and brush up their skill and
knowledge. You may ask the veteran guides the questions that you
have been unable to answer on the job. As the guide nature, many
instructors take care of you very well, talk to you a lot(sometimes
talk too much?).
||Inspection tours and lectures
Each branch office also runs inspection tours, lectures, and get-together
parties to improve the quality of the members and promote their
communication. For inspection tours, we visit the places related
to tourism especially new facilities. We have visited many places
including Okamoto Taro Museum (by Head Office), Nagoya Noh Theater (by
Nagoya Branch), Sanju-sangendo Temple (by Kansai Branch), Haratsuru Hot Springs
(by Fukuoka Branch).
For lectures, we recently had the speech on "World Tourism Organization"
and the speech on "the regional problems of tourism in Kyushu" by
inviting the experts in different fields. Some of our members can
give lectures to the others. We have the experts in HAIKU (Japanese
short poems), the experts in flora, the experts in SAKE(not heavy
drinkers?)and so on. They may embarrass the professors in each subject.
A get-together party is another pleasure for the members. We exchange
information, discuss problems and enjoy talking with different aged
people. You also have a chance to talk with the guides of different
||Job placement service
We give free job placement service to the members and this is authorized
by the Health, Labour and Welfare Minister. We give this service to the guides in 10 different
languages (English, French, German, Chinese, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese,
Russian, Korean, and Thai). We always contact travel agencies, private
companies, and local government offices and try to advertise JGA
and the members. We also try to get information about international
conferences and events as soon as possible to increase the opportunities
for the guides to work.
The guide fee is basically decided between the customers and the
guides by free-lance. In fact, it depends on the ability and career
of each guide. It also depends how long and how many people the
guide work for.
|| Public Relations
Propagation of the guide is necessary not only to increase the
jobs for the guide, but also to promote inbound tourism in Japan.
For this purpose, we have been doing lots of public relation activities
such as exchanging information with the people in tourism, having
interviews form mass media and public related magazines, and sending
our institutionary journal to the tourist divisions of all prefectural
governments and many tourist associations all over Japan.
We have about 7.3 million foreign visitors visiting Japan in 2006.
This is ranked in 30th in the world and 8th in Asia. Compared with
the number of the Japanese going overseas (1.7 million), however,
this is not enough at all and there is still a big imbalance between
inbound and outbound. We may have overemphasized outbound tourism.
Now it's time for us to emphasize inbound tourism more, just like
the other countries do.
In that sense, we expect "Welcome Plan 21" in which Ministry of Land,Infrastructure and Transport
plans to double the number of foreign tourists to Japan
in the next century.
It is urgent and important for us to have more foreign visitors
visit Japan and experience Japanese culture so that Japan will be
evaluated more fairly from the world. We also hope that the guides
who play important roles in the public relations for Japan should
be evaluated fairly as well and their job conditions will be improved.