STA News Keep up to date with all the latest news

Press Release – Scotland: World Leaders in Tourist Guiding

26 Apr 2016

Press release: issued by Scottish Tourist Guides Association

Looking for a professional tourist guide who not only entertains their clients but is properly trained to handle all eventualities?

The Scottish Tourist Guides Association (STGA) is the organisation behind the training of the famous Blue Badge tourist guides who are regarded as world leaders in the industry.

Blue Badge guides go through an intensive training course, accredited by the World Federation of Tourist Guide Associations (WFTGA) covering the whole of Scotland with a wide range of subjects including art, archaeology, history, geology, film and TV, and sports. They are also trained in professional skills and how to guide in moving vehicles, on sites and on walking tours. STGA also organises courses for regional (Green Badge) and site (Yellow Badge) guides.

There are currently 283 Blue Badge guides in Scotland though the number is set to rise with some 30 Blue Badge students currently sitting their final exams. There are also 98 Green Badge guides including 60 on Orkney and 31 on Shetland where there are growing numbers of cruise ship visits. The number of Yellow Badge guides has recently increased to 45, with a further 15 guides successfully joining the guiding team of City Sightseeing Glasgow. The training of tourist guides continues with 7 students, studying the Green Badge for Shetland and a further 9 students studying the Green Badge for the Northern Highlands.

This month eight Blue Badge guides qualified as WFTGA national trainers, joining a team of world-wide professional tourist guide trainers, recognised by UNWTO and UNESCO. WFTGA has members in more than 80 countries and the new Scottish trainers join four STGA members who are already qualified to train guides and trainers throughout the world.

The new trainers will be working with the team of trainers who have already been trained by STGA to train the next batch of recruits of the Blue Badge Guide Training course starting this Autumn.

STGA chairman John Duncan said: “The high level of training that STGA members undertake is key to its success. We have our own booking service and clients know that if they book one of our guides they will be in good hands.”

WFTGA President Felicitas Wressnig said: “The World Federation is proud to know that by passing this difficult assessment in the essential skills of training tourist guides, more Scottish Tourist Guides are becoming involvedin the World Federation’s key role of identifying and maintaining high standards of excellence in Tourist Guide performance world-wide”.

Tourist guides come from a variety of backgrounds – the new trainers include an archaeologist, teachers, business people as well as those who have spent all their lives in the tourism industry. All of them are experienced tourist guides in their own right, working with a variety of visitors – leisure, corporate and incentive clients and include Russian, French, Italian and German speakers as well as English. They all have a passion for Scotland that led them to become accredited Scottish Blue Badge Tourist Guides and are now proud to have the opportunity to pass on their skills and knowledge to the next generation.

For more information about booking a guide, contact Dot Wylie at: or phone 01786 451 953

For general enquiries, contact Miikka Kinnaird at: or phone 01786 447 784.

To browse all STGA guides and learn more about us, please visit

Last Modified: Tuesday 24 May 2016 08:38
Related Articles: ​STA responds to Scottish Government's tourist tax plans STA responds to Edinburgh Council Tourist Tax proposal STA responds to publication of Edinburgh Council Tourist Tax Consultation results 21 Scots business leaders call for Derek Mackay to scrap proposed rates levy SEC submits planning application to create global facility for world class events Edinburgh Council Consultation into Tourist Tax STA Member Council responds to Edinburgh City Council tourist tax consultation approval STA responds to Edinburgh City Council's plans for tourist tax consultation One million tourist boost for Glasgow City Region Pony express (train)