WFTGA came into being as a result of proposals put forward at the first International Convention of Tourist Guides, in February 1985. The Federation was officially registered as a non-profit organisation under Austrian law after a second Convention held in Vienna in 1987. At each international convention the WFTGA grew and today the organization has members from more than 70 countries, representing well over 200,000 individual tourist guides, WFTGA has established an international network of professional tourist guides and today is the only global forum for tourist guides and continues to grow with the changes of this industry.
WFTGA, THE WORLD FEDERATION OF TOURIST GUIDE ASSOCIATIONS is a not for profit, non political organisation which groups together, around the world, tourist guide associations; individual tourist guides where no association exists; tourism partners of both the WFTGA and member associations; educational institutes in tourism for tourist guides; convention and visitors bureaux and affiliate members who have direct or indirect association with tourist guides.
The WFTGA’s main purpose is to promote, market and ensure that tourist guides are recognised as the ambassadors of a region. They are the first and sometimes the only representation of the population a visitor will meet. WFTGA offers services to our members but also communicates to those in search of the services of professional area specific tourist guides and where to hire them. We also actively promote our members’ associations and industry partners worldwide.
WFTGA encourages and supports the use of only area-specific tourist guides to member regions which keeps the local tourist guides working and ensures that visitors have accurate and professional services from our members’ regions.
The day-to-day running of the World Federation is the responsibility of the Executive Board whose members are elected by delegates of the member countries for a two- year period at each Convention. To take a position on the Executive Board one has to know that such a position means complete involvement, dedication and many hours of work. Executive Board members who are elected must be actively practising tourist guides who are not tour operators, or tourist guide employers.
In addition, a number of Area Representatives are appointed by the Executive Board to provide liaison with the Board and with the existing members, and to encourage new membership. Both Executive Board Members and Area Representatives are active professional tourist guides. They are volunteers who dedicate their time and effort to achieving the aims of the Federation and to the promotion of tourist guides worldwide.
The official language of the WORLD FEDERATION OF TOURIST GUIDE ASSOCIATIONS is English. However, we will be more than happy to assist anyone we can in another language should there be difficulty in communicating in English.
The WFTGA logo is a symbol of the hands of friendship and guidance stretched across the world.