News for tour guides: bill arrives with reform of the profession

There is important news for tour guides: the government has in fact approved the bill with the reform of the profession. Among the new features are a national examination at least annually and a national list of licensed tour guides.

Important news for tour guides came yesterday from the Council of Ministers meeting in the afternoon at Palazzo Chigi. In fact, the Council of Ministers approved the bill, long awaited by the sector, on the new regulation of the tourist guide profession. The bill was submitted to the Council of Ministers at the proposal of Minister of Tourism Daniela Santanché, Minister of Business and Made in Italy Adolfo Urso, Minister of Justice Carlo Nordio, Minister of Regional Affairs and Autonomies Roberto Calderoli, and Minister of Culture Gennaro Sangiuliano. The aim of the bill is to create a unified professional order for tour guides, regulating their basic principles and defining a uniform standard of performance levels for the entire national territory, likewise strengthening the fight against abuse.

Several new features. Meanwhile, it will provide for the passing of a national licensing examination as a requirement for the exercise of the profession of tour guide, called by the Ministry of Tourism at least annually, consisting of a written, an oral and a technical-practical test. A national list of tourist guides will then be established, registration in which will be a necessary condition for carrying out the activity of a tourist guide (except for those who exercise the profession on a temporary and occasional basis or those who conduct extraordinary and free visits to sites that do not qualify as institutes and places of culture open to the public). Again, there will be the assignment of a specific Ateco code, by Istat, to define a specific classification of activities inherent to the profession of tourist guide. Then, the possibility for tour guides to achieve further thematic and territorial specializations and the obligation of professional updating will be introduced. Finally, the bill establishes the penalties to be applied in case of abusive exercise of the profession and the use of subjects not registered in the national list to carry out guided tours.

“The establishment of a national list for tour guides,” comments Fabio Pietrella of FdI, a member of the Productive Activities Committee of the Chamber of Deputies, “is good news that comes after ten years of waiting. Providing for a register of professionals who will have to be licensed to practice the profession means guaranteeing the quality and competence of guides. It also means, on the other hand, protecting tourists and guaranteeing a higher quality of service rendered by sheltering them from improvised guides who do not know how to adequately enhance our artistic and cultural heritage.”

“We are very pleased,” comments Simone Fiderigo Franci, president of GTI - Italian Tourist Guides, “with the passage of the Tourism DDL at the session of the Council of Ministers. This bill contains the reform of the profession of Tourist Guides and it is now more than ten years that we have been waiting for an organic and definitive revision that finally recognizes a value of national caliber to our profession. An important value given above all by a national list and patent, thanks to which our profession is thus recognized throughout the Italian tourist-cultural system with uniform access criteria and univocal protections throughout the country. We are confident of a speedy passage through the Chambers and an equally speedy approval by the Quirinale with consequent publication in the Official Gazette, so that we can proceed with the training and appointment of new Tourist Guides and thus allow all those people who want to undertake this profession, which enhances the tangible and intangible heritage of our country, to work in compliance with the rules and with due personal and professional satisfaction.”

“The presentation of the draft law on the regulation of the tourist guide profession in the Council of Ministers by Minister Santanché is certainly good news,” says Micol Caramello, president of Federagit, the association that brings together Confesercenti’s tourist guides and tour leaders. “We hope that Parliament will be able to examine and approve the new law quickly and that the Ministry of Tourism will be equally quick in issuing the implementing decrees. We are looking forward, given also the growth of tourism in recent months, to give back after 10 years to many young people the possibility of entering the profession of tour guide, which is fundamental for the proper dissemination and promotion of the territories and especially the cities of art that are now invaded by tourists. Our profession is an important lever for the promotion of any place that aspires to the status of tourist destination. Tour guides could also be key to extending the season and thus deseasonalizing tourist presences, expanding the offer by including destinations that are not yet sold out, such as small villages and rural and seaside resorts. It is necessary now more than ever to enhance and protect the profession of tour guide, a fundamental role in welcoming tourists and transmitting Italian culture, and we hope that the bill presented by Minister Santanché will soon become law.”

News for tour guides: bill arrives with reform of the profession
News for tour guides: bill arrives with reform of the profession

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