105 Fulfilling Benefits of Being a Tour Operator

By Kyla Steeves

Operator HighlightsOperator Highlights

Collage of tour photos

When times are tough, you might question why you decided to start a tour operator business in the first place. And that’s exactly what you should do. Remember the why.

Why were you inspired to create unique, memorable experiences? What gets you out of bed every morning? Why do you love what you do?

Running a business isn’t always smooth sailing. But if you put your why at the forefront, you can bring meaning to your work and give yourself a reason, along with resilience and determination, to keep pushing through — no matter what comes your way.

That’s why we asked operators around the world, “what’s the best part of the job?” Hopefully, their words will inspire you and serve as a reminder of what gets you fired up.

Showing off the wonders of your backyard

1. “Our favourite part of the job is sharing the wonders of our backyard, specifically the beautiful body of water known as the Salish Sea with guests from all over the world.” Eagle Wing Tours 

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2. “Hands-down, my favourite aspect of the job is getting to see someone’s face light up at the majesty of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It always serves as a gentle reminder of how it took my breath away the first time I experienced its raw, stunning, natural beauty.” Brass Monkey Photography

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3. “My favourite part of the job is opening our family property to people from all over the world, to provide them with a place to escape the busyness of today’s world and recharge the batteries in nature.” Chapman Valley Horse Riding

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4. “Being able to offer ‘off the beaten track’ experiences on the Jurassic Coast is always going to be satisfying. Seeing people from all over the world fall in love with the area is extraordinary.” Dorset Tours

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5. “As a true adventurer at heart, I love sharing the laid-back lifestyle and the immense diversity of our beautiful country. Travelling through South Africa offers so much variety – you haven’t lived until you experienced the epic landscapes, warm, creative people and rich natural and cultural heritage.” Hotspots2c Tours

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6. “We think we live in the best corner of Aotearoa New Zealand and are thankful for the opportunity to be able to share it with guests from around the globe.” Outwest Tours

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7. “I love seeing the positive impact that showing the pristine mountain environments of the Canadian Rockies has on our guests.” Canadian Rockies Experience 

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8. “Making people have a lifetime experience while doing what you love is priceless. You will never get tired of meeting people from around the world and sharing with them the best part of your country.” Red Cat Panama

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Meeting people from all over the world

9. “I love riding my bike with people from all around the world, from all walks of life, in some of the most beautiful and cycling-friendly places in Europe.” Stuart Hall Cycling Holidays

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10. “My favourite part of this job is being able to connect with open-minded people from different countries and, most importantly, being a part of someone’s happy memory!” Show Me Qatar

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11. “I love meeting such a diverse range of people from all over the world.” Melbourne Experiences

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12. “I love meeting great people from all over the USA and world and show them Central Kentucky and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail as well as our beautiful Thoroughbred Farms.” Central Kentucky Tours

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13. “I love meeting new people and discovering the amazing gay bar scene we have in Puerto Vallarta. It never gets old or boring here seeing visitors discover it!” Gay Vallarta Bar Hopping

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14. “I love going powder skiing with awesome people from all over the world!” Big Red Cats

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15. “My favourite part of the job is meeting customers. I can’t be a guide, and only sometimes join tours. When I started, I met every customer, but as the business grew, office work took over. Meeting customers helps me realize why I started in the first place.” Expique

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16. “I love to be in touch with my clients. I love to follow them during the tours; it creates a relationship that goes over the business matter, you find new friends.” Med Shore Tours

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17. “After walking through the spooky history of Traverse City, you feel like you’ve been on an adventure with a spirited group of people. Some tell of a loved one they’ve lost, most tell of their own unique haunted experience and all laugh along with my jokes.” Haunted Traverse

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Being part of a first time experience

18. “Seeing our visitors’ faces when they meet an Asian elephant for the first time in their natural habitat fills our heart. It reminds us of all the efforts we’ve made to improve the well being of these gentle giants.” Elephant Conservation Center

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19. “I love the proud feeling of seeing a new tour guide ace their first tour on their own. And get a thrill walking guests through Philadelphia’s famous Reading Terminal Market for the first time, seeing their reaction of the diverse and artisanal vendors from around the area.” City Food Tours

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20. “The best part of our job is seeing the expression of our guests underwater the first time they see a shark!” Palau Dive Adventures

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21. “One of the many enjoyable parts of our job is hearing the joy in our guests’ voices as they take their first picture of the aurora. Family and friends gather around to look, and pretty soon everyone is taking some of the most beautiful and exciting photos of their lives.” Arctic Frontier

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22. “The best part of guiding people in the Canadian Rockies is getting to see the landscape through new eyes! It’s pretty amazing to share in their excitement and wonder! It’s amazing to see how someone’s eyes light up when you help them connect to the world around them.” Get Outside

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23. “I love the amazement on people’s faces when they see a beaver dam up close and personal, in England, for the first time. It’s always a joy!” Spains Hall Estate

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Teaching people new and exciting skills

24. “We love to teach people new and exciting skills in and on the water. Watching people engaging with nature and the ocean is amazing. Getting people from all walks of life trying and succeeding at some of our amazing activities is incredible.” Newquay Water Sports Centre 

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25. “I love teaching my clients new photography skills while helping them capture the incredible landscapes of Banff and the Canadian Rockies. It brings me joy to know that I’ve played a small part in their photographic journey.”  Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures

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26. “My favourite part of the job is being able to take my passion and skills in fly fishing and give them to my customers. The opportunity and experience of fly fishing is one that you retain for a lifetime.” Sunrise Fly Shop 

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27. “People often say they aren’t creative, but a workshop or class here at New Brewery Arts always reminds them how much enjoyment and fulfilment their creativity can bring.” New Brewery Arts 

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28. “When guests reach the glaciers, you see the moment they realize how they got to Blackstone Bay. No captain got them there; they learnt to ride themselves, and there’s an immense sense of self-pride. Knowing they take that confidence with them is what keeps us here day after day.” Glacier Jet Ski Tours

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29. “I love seeing a worried face in the morning turn to sheer delight towards the end of the day. There’s a sudden realization of how to use a camera properly. The change in the student’s photography is remarkable even after only 5 hours of tuition. It’s such a pleasure.” Three Little Wishes Photography

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30. “Travel photography is one of the best ways to experience and learn from other cultures. The process of sharing these adventures and discoveries with like-minded people while helping them to hone in their photography skills in the field is enriching.” Photo Tours & Expeditions

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31. “I love building a community using the power of a sport where anyone can participate and excel.” Chopper’s Hatchet House 

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32. “When people discover how to make something happen they just light up — whether it’s creating a chemical reaction in our school workshops, playing with family in our Playzone, discovering something new in our online workshops or making slime at a birthday party. We are here to create curiosity.” TwistED Science

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Bringing a destination to life 

33. “Whether it be the thrill of harnessing the wind or flying alongside it on the zodiac, just like a fingerprint, each adventure unique. Presenting guests with a new perspective of the city and sharing the stories entwined in the regional geography, that’s what makes it all worth it.” Sail Superior

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34. “I love to see people’s excitement when they taste something new & exciting and when you’re able to make them laugh with fun facts or stories. It gives me the satisfaction that I’m really giving something extra for their visit to Iceland.” Your Friend In Reykjavik 

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35. “My favourite part of the work I do is telling stories and seeing people of all ages get excited about the history and people of Puerto Rico. We have such a fascinating history that once told, it quickly connects and engages travelers to our island.” Isla Caribe Tours

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36. “It’s all about the stories for me. I got into this through a passion for writing. Led to sharing other’s experiences. And nothing better than ghosts and strange history.” Ghost Walks

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37. “I enjoy picking up clients at the airport and taking away any anxiety they may be feeling about South Africa, especially if it’s their first time. The best part is sightseeing during the long road trip to Kruger National Park and sharing South Africa’s intriguing history with them.” Sandton Taxi Cabs

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38. “My favourite part of the job is definitely bringing Japanese culture to life for our guests. Giving our guests an opening into the mysteries of Geisha and Samurai culture is magical.” Kanazawa Tours

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39. “Nothing beats the opportunity to surprise and delight travellers with new knowledge and experiences; to feed their souls and curious minds. Their ah-ha moments as they capture unique photos are superb moments indeed.” Shutterbug Walkabouts 

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40. “I love talking to people from Ontario, Quebec, and further abroad, and telling them all about Prince Edward County and the history of the wineries and how we’ve grown to become a major tourist draw. Of course, cycling for exercise, being outdoors and interacting with clients helps keep me young!” The County Wine Tours

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41. “We love introducing new food and changing the way people think about food and its role in our universe. Sharing delicious food and stories of the people who make it is our passion. We do what we do to deepen that connection with our guests from all over the world.” Lost Plate Food Tours 

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A new adventure every day

42. “Every day is an entirely new adventure, not just for our guests, but for us as well. Even after so many years, I still get excited whenever a whale swims close to the boat, or we watch giant pieces of glacial ice come crashing into the ocean in front of us.” Northern Latitude Adventures

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43. “My favourite part of being a shuttle driver in Colorado is that you never know what you’ll see when you round the corner, whether it’s a mountain view, herd of elk or a traffic bottleneck. It doesn’t feel like a job; it feels like I am an explorer.” Powderhound

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44. “Being on the water is never the same. The one thing we never tire of is the exhilaration of encountering wild dolphins in the bay. It’s such a thrill to provide this experience to someone who has never witnessed the grace and power of these gorgeous mammals of the sea.” Ocean Force Adventures

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45. “I love waking up after a blizzard and being the first one to put my feet in the fresh powder! Also, I love the faces of my friends in Europe when I tell them that I build luxurious snow Igloos in Australia!” Alpine Nature Experiences

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46. “I love how much improvising is necessary for our beach tours. Since the Cliffs are constantly eroding, every tour feels new. You never know what fossils you’ll find and be able to interpret!” The Joggins Fossil Institute

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Making a living out of your passion

47. “It’s tempting to say the ability to make my own hours or spend my days outdoors engaged in sports that make me happy. But the best part is the absolute freedom running your own small business allows. We can come up with any mad idea and roll with it.” BigStyle

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48. “The inspiration to become an operator was my admiration of the beauty of my country, which I wished to share with travelers. If I could make a living out of it, that would be great! I love anticipating the success of a brand new idea for an excursion, experience, or package.” Milos Greece

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49. “I personally care about tech and online-marketing our festival brands and local businesses. The amazing part of the job is to connect online with offline and to meet a customer you acquired online later at your festival.” Zrce.eu

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50. “The best part of this job is exploring new parts of my amazing country still undiscovered, and meeting a new artisan maker or farmer and listening to their amazing history made of big sacrifice, love and passion to carry on the family business.” Italy Charme

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51. “I get super excited scouting new regions and talking to locals who are ready and willing to share their stories, culture and heritage and most of all, their house as a working space to help travellers create memorable experiences.” Pikala Bikes

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52. “My favourite part of the job is researching which wineries to be partners with, who would have thought you could really sample wine and charcuterie for a living?” Temecula Cable Car Wine Tours

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53. I love getting to know the natural places I take my guests, like my most popular tour, a kayak/SUP paddle through a pristine mangrove lagoon. Seeing it every day means I can follow how it changes and observe the details of the habitat and its creatures, large and small.” GroundSea Adventures

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54. “It’s such a privilege to be able to make a living out of letting our huskies do what they love most to do! Getting to run, meeting new people everyday and getting lots of cuddles. I know that is why our guests love to come on a tour with us.” Beito Husky Tours

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55. “My favourite part of my job is delivering the service that we offer. As an owner, this is only part of what my role is. Checkfront allows me to concentrate on the fun side while the administrative side of the business is taken care of.” Free Wave Surf Academy

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Pushing people out of their comfort zone

56. “I love to help guests leave their comfort zone in a safe and enjoyable way. That big smile after someone felt the ocean swell under their kayak for the first time just makes my day.” NovaShores Adventures

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57. “I love being a business owner and helping people achieve things they never thought they could!” Wild Pines Park

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58. “I love that moment when someone’s eyes light up with wonder and excitement, seeing the photo they have just made and realizing the magic and simplicity of making a great photograph doesn’t belong only to the pros.” Donna Koch Photo Walking Tours

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59. “I love the look of joy and confidence on the faces of our customers when they take their Four-Wheel Drive over terrain they never dreamed they could. This makes it hard to call it a job.” Western Wilderness

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60. “Every day we see families and kids face fears. They push themselves and accomplish what they weren’t sure they could. I can’t imagine a better job. I get to be part of the process of people actively improving themselves, exploring their world, and accomplishing something real.” Terrapin Adventures

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61. “I love hearing the laughter and seeing the faces of our guests, especially the ones that are pushing their comfort zone.” West Coast Wild

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62. “We love challenging our customers in a fun and safe way, and the sense of achievement they get at the end of one of our rock climbing trips makes our job the best job in the world!” Real Rocks

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63. “That look of glee on the face of a fisherman after they have just won the battle is my favourite part.” Three Sisters Charters

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64. “My favourite part of my job is when I see my guests having so much fun eating and drinking and discovering what they love about French food and wine that they forget they were ever intimidated by it.” Taste of Toulouse

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Creating memories to last a lifetime

65. “I love seeing the enjoyment on the customer’s face after hiring our boats or enjoying a scenic float tour on the River Severn and knowing that we’ve helped create a special memory in their life.” Shropshire Raft Tours

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66. “For me, travel has always been about people & my favourite travel memories are all about the engagements I’ve had with locals. For this reason, I love helping our guests create their own amazing travel memories through positive personal engagement.” Go West Tours

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67. “Knowing we’re creating unique experiences and memories for clients that’ll last a lifetime might be #1, but we also support a native village, and it feels good to provide jobs and build relationships with locals. Of course, traveling for a living makes my job a nice one to have!” Barefoot Panama

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68. “The tours we’ve created are with our passion for France, and the best part of the day is knowing that our guests have shared some of that passion and that they take those memories with them when they leave.” OohProvence  

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69. “I love seeing the sheer excitement on guest’s faces as they dress up in the costumes from the filming days here at Winterfell Castle and get their photo taken firing arrows next to the tower young Brandon Stark famously fell from back in Season One.” Winterfell Tours

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70. “I love watching children play with each other and forget about time and space, and when parents laugh as they watch their toddler try to climb a step or go down a slide. Everytime I see a smile, I realize that our business helps parents and their children build timeless memories.” Jimbaloo

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71. “Our goal is to guarantee a guest’s tour of Scotland is an experience that’ll last a lifetime! We aim to make the most of their time in our beautiful country, and introduce them to the very best highlights, all whilst travelling in a luxury vehicle with a private group.” About Scotland

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The surprises along the way

72. “My favourite part of my job is the surprises we have for guests along the way — an unexpected place or moment that captivates them and becomes a favourite memory: a wine-tasting in an ancient cellar, a stunning drive on mountain roads, meeting a world-class storyteller in a tiny town…” Explore Up Close

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73. “By showcasing fantastic, locally owned bakeries, most of whom are mom-and-pop or off the beaten path, we get to show our customers a side of the city they haven’t seen before and help them connect with the stories behind these great local bake shops.” Sugartooth Tours

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74. “I just love all ‘Wow’s,’ ‘how do you find all these places?’ and ‘I never expected Slovenian food to be so delicious.’ Their amazement when we unfold Slovenia’s secrets and diverse treasures of nature. Slovenia usually gets a special place in their hearts, and it fills me with joy and pride.” Slovenia Trips

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75. “I love sharing an undiscovered part of England with our guests. They are so surprised when they realize how beautiful the area is and learn the story of how the Forest was created, where once there were coal-mines.”  National Forest Ebike Holidays 

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76. “Travelling once a year to someplace that you’ve never been to before is soothing for the soul. Allowing people to explore destinations that they may not otherwise go to is the best part of our relationship with our clients.” Hot Holidays

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77. “We love to take our guests to our favourite hidden beaches and islands — where we go with family and friends. As they are off the beaten path and they get to experience what we are so lucky to enjoy every day.” Epic Charters

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78. “We love allowing our guests to experience the remoteness of Australia from the luxury of our coaches. It brings great joy to take them out of the cities and slow down for a few days.” Christians Bus

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79. “We love giving guests deeper insight into Hong Kong food and culture and hearing ‘Wow! I never knew such a place existed in Hong Kong!’ from someone who has lived here many years or has traveled here many times before. Giving people that insider edge is what we live for.”  Little Adventures in Hong Kong

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Hearing how you’ve made someone’s trip

80. “I love logging in on Monday and reading how all the little things we do day to day has added up to someone having the best experience of their life, unlocked a new perspective or put a much-needed smile on their face. It’s a fantastic reward and great source of motivation.” Much Better Adventures

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81. “I love playing bagpipes for visitors at many beautiful locations in Scotland. Many customers have said it’s a truly emotional experience, and it gives me great pleasure and job satisfaction when I read the 5-star reviews customers have written about their memorable private tours of Scotland.” Kilted Piper Tours

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82. “My favourite part of my job is meeting new people and cultures. I also love to show and share our beautiful city. We are proud to have only top TripAdvisor reviews, and I’m always super happy to read feedback from customers on our tours.” Aalborg Tours

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83. “I take great pride and enjoyment when I receive a message or email from guests for whom I have planned a tour, and they tell me: our guide was just amazing. He completely added to the whole experience. I know for sure they will hold memories of the Maldives forever.” Secret Paradise

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84. “My favourite part of the job is when we get reviews from clients saying they were a bit apprehensive at first to take a food tour. If we can introduce just one slightly different, even weird, taste to their holiday that they love, it opens up their whole Singapore experience.” Singa Bites

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85. “I love hearing that the detailed information we provided on the website allowed people to experience activities they never thought they could.” Exploryst

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86. “I love to hear feedback from our passengers after their tour. The customer experience is the most important factor, so when you hear how much they loved their visit, it makes it all worthwhile. Whether it’s feedback on the attractions, the coach or their driver-guide, we’re always happy to receive it.” Discover Scotland Tours

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Nothing beats a smiling face

87. “Best part of my job — the sun is shining, the river is up, people are having fun. On the bus ride back to base camp, everyone talks about which rapid was their favourite, and there are big smiles on everybody’s face. You know you did your job. What a great feeling.” Mukwah Rafting Tours

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88. “My favourite part of the job is hosting travelers in my city, sharing a great experience with them, and sending them off with a smile.” Austin Brewery Tours

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89. “I love getting back from a long day on the bikes. Everyone’s tired and hot, but the energy is incredible; it’s big smiles and high fives all round with everyone talking about the day’s antics. It’s a fantastic feeling to see satisfied guests that can’t wait to ride again!” Dust Devils

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90. “I love getting to see the smiles we put on people’s faces!” Wisco Wheeler

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91. “For us, by far, the best reward is happy people, and then, we are happy as well.” 3glav Adventures

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92. “My favourite part of the job is in the afternoons when our passengers arrive back after the dive trip. They have excitement in their eyes, smiles on their faces, they are happy, and we have been able to share a part of Galapagos with them.” Academy Bay Diving

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93. “We love to see happy expressions on our guests’ faces when they are satisfied with our tours & services. The operation is our favourite part because we love to pamper our guests and go beyond their satisfaction.” Pure Morocco

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94. “I love watching all the customers have a great time during the boat trip and sending the customer home safely and happily.” Breakaway Luxury Yachting

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95. “It never gets old seeing the amazed expression on people’s faces after a Segway tour. They have experienced something fun and unique travelling 5.5km along diverse bush trails, amongst the grapevines, scenic views of the mountain range and scores of kangaroos in the wild. They leave us absolutely buzzing!!” NSW Segway Tours

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96. “One of my favourite memories involved a family that spanned in generations. They played a game with an unexpected element and the eldest lady of the team (who discovered the surprise) squealed with absolute delight. It doesn’t get much better than that. Bringing smiles to thousands of people. It’s amazing.” Adventure Rooms Canada

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All the incredible moments in-between

97. “I love watching the sheer elation that people experience as they solve clues and the way people interact with their teammates as they play. Honestly, I could write a psychology book from just observing our players.” Mystery Towns

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98. “I love seeing our majestic 125-year-old sailing trawler out on the waves in full sail just as she was in Victorian times – it’s a joy!” Pilgrim of Brixham BM45 

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99. “I love seeing young and old ones playing together and having a lot of fun.” Høyt & Lavt Bergen

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100. “We love entertaining generations of family who return to us year after year, decade after decade. The joy of learning a puzzle, racing friends in the maze and seeing the effects of an illusion is truly universal across all ages and nationalities.” Puzzling World

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101. “My favourite part of my job is the fun factor. A lot of work goes into running a small business but the moments when it’s just pure fun is gold.” Candlebox Kayaking

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102. “I love being able to provide fun driving events for people to enjoy their cars safely.” Performance Driving Australia

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103. “We coined the phrase ‘Puffin Therapy’ to describe what we see happen to visitors when they commune with Treshnish Isles puffins. Stresses melt away, and visitors return changed by the experience. This is why we are regularly asked what it’s like to have the best job in the world.” Turus Mara

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104. “The passion that I carry for tourism inspired me to undertake and create a very beautiful project. Today it is a fruitful company that generates opportunities for many people in the tourism sector.” Valencia Travel

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105. “My favourite part of the job – Group cries of ‘The King in da Norf!’ in the 12th century ruined abbey where Robb Stark became King. Never gets old!” Game of Thrones Tours

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