LCB to offer public opportunity to train as tour guides

National 2 minutes, 3 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

LAKSAMANA College of Business (LCB) together with the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) will be holding a training course in October for anyone interested in becoming a tour guide.

“This will be a month-long course where we’ll teach them everything from how to talk on a bus to (how to take a tour group out on a river),” Simon Keenan, head of business and hospitality at LCB, told The Brunei Times on the sidelines of LCB’s graduation ceremony earlier this week.

He said there has been a lot of interest in the course.

Keenan said they currently have four groups of participants for its short course for existing tour guides to bring their skills in line with industry standards, noting that 70 per cent of the tour guides undergoing the course are locals.

“They’re doing a 40-hour course over a week. We know they know their jobs. We’re just trying to make them better and make sure there’s a standard in Brunei.

“The course is a breakdown of current developments in Brunei tourism, standards for Brunei tour guides, which is really important, and making sure the tour guides communicate properly with tourists,” he said.

Keenan said they are looking into adding a section to the course on Brunei’s flora and fauna so tour guides have a better understanding on how to explain it.

“We’re trying to teach them more about the history of Brunei. Not all of our tour guides are local Bruneians. Some of them don’t have great knowledge on Brunei’s history, so we teach them those things,” he said.

LCB is working with industry experts and the MPRT, who he said have been very helpful with the courses.

Meanwhile, Keenan said the Department of Economic Planning and Development (JPKE) has come on board to offer scholarships for Bruneians to take part in the courses.

He said any Bruneian between the ages of 18 to 60 can apply for a scholarship.

The cost of the short course for non-Bruneians or those not under the scholarship is $363, while the course in October costs $1,300 for non-locals or those without the scholarship.

“We’re mindful of the fact that Brunei doesn’t need to have 4,000 tour guides. At some stage, we’ll have to stop the courses,” Keenan said.

He said there’s no reason why Bruneian tour guides can’t be on par with those in Malaysia and Singapore.

The Brunei Times