They neither take a course nor pass knowledge exam
PROGRESO.- You have to take a course, take an exam, and pass it to receive the tourist guide certification and credential, which is granted by the Federal Ministry of Tourism (Sectur), informed Raúl Montor Pérez, who is certified as a general guide.
As a general guide, one must speak Spanish and another language, it is a requirement that must be fulfilled, he said.
In an interview, Montor Pérez stated that he speaks Spanish, English, and French, languages he is fluent in, and has many years of experience as a tour guide, but he no longer serves cruise ship tourists arriving from the U.S. because they are monopolized by tour companies and use tour drivers who claim to be certified guides.
Because he was displaced by the fake tour guides, he works with Canadians living in this port, who have more time to tour the archaeological sites, Merida, and other tourist destinations.
Montor Pérez said that he became certified as a general tourist guide in 2010 and, to do so, he had to take a course given by anthropologists, archaeologists and historians at the Faculty of Anthropological Sciences of Yucatán, and then study for and pass the exam.
He said that several dropped out of the course because there were classes on the Egyptians and they did not like it; they did not take the whole course and did not pass it.
To be certified one has to study and update oneself, which is what the pirate tourist guides do not do nor do they care to do, because there is no vigilance; the inspectors of the Secretariat of Tourism are not attentive to qualify the work they do, he added.
He expressed that there are guides who take tourists to the Government Palace, but since they do not know the history when they arrive they tell them that it is free time and they do not guide them in the historic building because they could be heard screwing up by those who do know.
He indicated that a general guide has to have extensive knowledge of the places where he is going to take the tourists, speak a language other than Spanish, and have at least a high school education.
On the other hand, a local guide only has knowledge of the place where he or she is guiding tourists, has at least a primary school education, and speaks only Spanish.