They are invaluable to the tourism industry and make sure that the visitor’s time in Stockholm will be filled exactly with what they want.
The tourist guides bring history to life between the two waters of the Baltic Sea and Lake Mälaren. From past to present.
Many visitors in Stockholm know exactly what they want to see, others want a guide to help them see and experience the most interesting and important
– We tailor all programs to every visitor’s needs and wants, Karin Olsson Trollmo explains.
She is the spokesperson for the nearly 400 qualified tourist guides in FSAG (Föreningen Stockholms Auktoriserade Guider). The association has more members than ever, as well as guides in more languages than ever. There are 31 languages including sign language.
– When you work as a tourist guide, you must have finely-tuned intuition in order to optimize the visit to Stockholm. It is easy to guide a person who knows exactly what they want
to see. For others, however, you have to discuss with the participants and suggest alternatives. A guide needs to understand where the visitor comes from and what special interests they have, explains Karin.
Visitors who stay for several days can choose to spend their first day with a tourist guide and then go on and do things on their own. It is a good way for them to be sure that
they do not miss the most important things to see and to learn how to get around. It is easy to walk around in Stockholm – there is very good public transportation and one can travel by ferry as well. The tourist guides in Stockholm organized and formed FSAG in 1953, in connection with Stockholm’s 700th anniversary. They are invaluable to the tourism industry and make sure that the visitor’s time in Stockholm will be filled exactly with what they want.
STOCKHOLM CITY CERTIFIES
Today the majority of qualified tourist guides in Stockholm are entrepreneurs. They have completed special training and thereafter certified by the City of Stockholm.. The assignments can be everything from taking care of cruise visitors in ready-made programs, to families or smaller parties who want a professional guide to help them get around. A qualified tourist guide in Stockholm has a solid knowledge of Stockholm, historically and current; culture, environment and the city’s role in Sweden, and in the world and they know all the various attractions in the city. Thanks to FSAG, it is easy for members to do continuing education and share experiences with each other.
WE LOVE OUR JOB!
– Those of us that work with this love our job and especially that we constantly are able to continually update our knowledge and learn more. The more you learn, the more you realize that there is more learning to do. This dynamic makes the work so fun and stimulating. We meet people from all over the world and tell them about Stockholm, and just as often we get to hear their stories. For many visitors, the qualified tourist guide is the only local they meet during their visit. A tourist guide in Stockholm can a normal year meet around 3,000 visitors during a season. We have a great responsibility to represent our city in a correct and interesting way.
– We want the visitors to go home and tell their friends that they should go to Stockholm! says Karin Olsson Trollmo.
COLLABORATION IN THE CITY, NATIONALLY AND INTERNATIONALLY
FSAG has been working closely in cooperation with most visitor destinations for a long time, sharing and exchanging experiences in order to be able to adjust and do better. The association also cooperates with the administrations in the City of Stockholm, who work with marketing of the city as well as with the city´s service to visitors. FSAG also network with other cities in Sweden to lift up and strengthen the tourist guide´s role. FSAG is run on a voluntary basis and also participates in important international cooperation’s through its membership of the World Federation of Tourist Guides Association (WFTGA).
BOOK A GUIDE
On FSAG’s website all members introduce themselves. One can contact a specific guide or fill in a booking form with all requests, and then choose a guide. Welcome to see and experience Stockholm with a qualified tourist guide!
Text: Caroline Knutsson-Hall