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Tour Guide

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Franchises Available? No
Online Operation? No

THE BRIEF:

Do you live in a tourist area, and do you know that area well? If so, why not consider starting a business as a personal tour guide. This type of enterprise can be managed from a home office, started for less than $1,000, and has the potential to produce an income that can easily exceed $50,000 per year. The key to success in becoming a personal tour guide is to promote your service aggressively, build contacts with companies and individuals that can help you succeed, and to provide clients with the best time of their vacation.

ASK THE PROS:

How much money can you make?

"Currently, tour guides are charging clients around $150 for half-day tours, and as much as $300 for full-day tours, plus the cost to provide transportation and tickets to events or local attractions. Companies and individuals to build alliances with, in terms of generating referrals, are limousine companies, hotels and hotel employees, business event planners, and travel agents.” —Entrepreneur staff

How do you ensure good word of mouth and reviews?

"Provide clients with an unforgettably fun experience combined with incredible service and you will have the two main ingredients to secure lots of referral and repeat business. Also market your services to corporations that want to treat their visiting out-of-town customers, employees and executives to a special event." —Entrepreneur staff

What’s the most important thing to know about this business?

“Keep your website fresh and updated regularly, so it continues to attract traffic. While you may decide to use a contract web designer/administrator to look after your site, you may also be able to do the updating yourself. Additionally, if your site is your travel business, you'll need to check e-mail often to keep up with requests for information, brochures and those all-important travel reservations.” —Entrepreneur staff

 

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