Tour guides experiences with tourists with disabilities

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The market of tourists with disabilities consists of a sizeable percentage of total tourism and is rapidly growing globally but little is known about tour guides experiences with them. These tourists with disabilities seem to have less holiday offers thereby reducing the frequency of tour guide encounters with them. While most tourism literature supports tour guides and their contribution to tourist experience, very little research is done in developing countries to show experiences of tour guides with tourists with disabilities. There is a knowledge gap of how the interactions between the guide and tourists with disabilities participating in the guided tours influence the tour guides’ experience. Using face to face interviews and focus group discussions with tour guides the study sought to establish people with disabilities types of holidays, concerns they raise during tours and challenges encountered by tour guides when touring with PwD. Non-probability, namely convenience and judgemental sampling methods were followed to pick tour guides from museums and national parks. Study results revealed the activities that tour guides are offering people with disabilities, guides’ own choice of activities for tourists with disabilities and the challenges faced by tour guides in the provision of those activities. The study concludes that the guiding industry has inadequate information about tourists with disabilities and thus is failing to fully serve the market. Lastly the study provides a set of recommendations that can be used by the tour guiding industry in order to effectively serve the market of tourists with disabilities.

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