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7 Tour Guide Business Success Stories [2023]

7 Tour Guide Business Success Stories [2023]
Start A Tour Guide Business

Can you offer a native perspective of a town you know well? If yes, starting a tour guide business can be a significant business venture. Tour guides charge tourists per tour and provide visitors with an area with local tour narration and navigation.

To start a tour guide business, choose an area you know, and study its history. Visitors will often ask questions and expect you to answer them. Therefore, you have to be well-versed in the areas you will cover.

You can partner with a tour & travel company or a game park near you and offer the visitor's tour guide services.

Here are some real life success stories of starting a tour guide business:

1. Trip Hacks DC ($18K/year)

Rob's side hustle was crushed by the pandemic, but he found a winning spinoff buried deep in his YouTube stats and Google Analytics.  This one will definitely have you thinking about the simple long-tail search questions you can answer — and monetize — for your own audience. Full show notes

Rob Pitingolo (from Washington D.C., DC, USA) started Trip Hacks DC over 6 years ago.

$1.5K / month
1 founders / 1 employees

Case Study

Trip Hacks DC was founded in 2017 by Rob Pitinglo to offer travel advice, insider knowledge, and 100% private guided tours to tourists visiting Washington, DC.

Rob primarily uses YouTube to advertise his tour-guiding business, from which he makes about $1,500 per month.

His channel Trip Hacks DC has over 26k followers on YouTube and his videos have more than 2,982,600 views to date.

The sole purpose of his YouTube videos, like Washington DC for under $20, is to persuade viewers to visit the location and not just to sell his own trips.

Rob is ranked #9 on Tripadvisor out of several businesses despite operating in one of the most competitive markets.


Read the full article on tourpreneur.com ➜

2. Intrepid Travel ($520M/year)

James Thornton, CEO of the Melbourne, Australia-based Intrepid Group, believes that the company’s dedication to responsible tourism is one of the main drivers of its stunning growth in recent years.

Darrell Wade and Geoff Manchester (from Melbourne VIC, Australia) started Intrepid Travel over 34 years ago.

$43.3M / month
2 founders / 1260 employees

Case Study

In the late 1980s, Darrell and Geoff Manchester established Intrepid as a brand new way of exploring the world.

Intrepid Travel offers more than 1,150 trips on all seven continents that are sustainable and experience-rich.

They didn't set out to build the biggest purpose-led adventure travel brand in the world, but they have done so now, by generating $43 million in annual revenue.

They are the biggest adventure tour operator in the world, operating a network of 26 DMCs and a nonprofit foundation.

Since 2002, their nonprofit organization, The Intrepid Foundation, has raised over AUD 12 million for 135 charities worldwide.


Read the full story on forbes.com ➜

Learn more about starting a tour guide business:

Where to start?

-> How much does it cost to start a tour guide business?
-> Pros and cons of a tour guide business

Need inspiration?

-> Examples of established tour guide business
-> Marketing ideas for a tour guide business

Other resources

4. Fodors Travel Guide

Fodor's provides expert travel content worth exploring so you can dream up your next trip. The world is a weird and wonderful place—we want to show you around.

  • Website traffic: 2.97M/month
  • Business rank: #25.4K

Check out their full website ➜

5. Intrepid Travel

The best small group tour means you’ll travel the local way. Affordable travel packages and the experience of a lifetime. Book an Intrepid tour today.

  • Estimated revenue: $43.3M/month
  • Business rank: #41.5K

Check out their full website ➜

6. Touring Plans

Disney World, Disneyland, Universal Orlando, and Disney Cruise Line Crowds, Wait Time Apps, and Touring Plans

  • Website traffic: 690K/month
  • Business rank: #225K

Check out their full website ➜

Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story
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