What do you think about hiring a local tour guide in Tokyo? There are probably many aspects you need consider when deciding to hire a guide for your trip. What are the pros and cons? What do you want to do during your trip? You should also consider who you’re traveling companions are. It’s definitely a decision you should think about before creating an itinerary for your trip. I’ve listed some pros and cons so that maybe they will help you make up your mind.
Pros and Cons To Hire a Tour Guide In Tokyo:
1. You don’t have to brainstorm an itinerary
When taking a trip for sightseeing purposes, you need to think up some kind of itinerary right? Or else you’ll arrive in the country and say what am I supposed to do now? And if it’s your first time in any country, in most cases you’ll want to see the most famous sightseeing spots. Even with a guide book to help you, it takes a bit of research to decide on the best spots to visit and find the ones that are nearest each other so that you don’t have to travel across the city two, three times in one day. If you hire a private tour guide, you don’t have to think. They’ll pick you up and take you to the best sightseeing spots, and just by following them around you’ll be able to take in all the sights.
2. No worries about getting lost
Getting lost in a foreign country is one of the fears people have of going abroad. Even though Japan is one of the most peaceful countries in the world, I know from personal experience that it’s still scary when you get turned around and have no idea how to get home. The train systems are a maze and if don’t have any experience navigating them, it’s easy to get lost. And you may notice that the Japanese people are really nice as a whole but not many of them are fluent in English. So, having your own personal guide to tell you which train to get on, what stop to get off at, or which exit to get out from the station is really a big help. Because frankly, it’s a bit tiring to navigate Tokyo.
3. Local knowledge about everything
Have you ever found yourself going to some place written about in a guide book and finding it not to your taste? It’s difficult to decide if it’s worth seeing a particular sightseeing spot or not. This is where the knowledge of a local tour guide comes in handy. They live and work in Tokyo so their opinion should be insightful. It’s also a good idea to ask a local person about restaurant choices or where to shop for certain things. I’m sure they’ll have information you can’t read about in guide books.
4. Detailed explanations in English
If you’re going to be visiting a famous sightseeing spot, some people prefer to have a detailed explanation about the history or the cultural aspects in English. Of course, sightseeing spots often have brochures or plaques with a simple explanation in English, but it won’t tell you about what that place means to the local Japanese people. And you won’t be able to ask any questions. English speaking tour guides are essential if you are a person who wants to be able to have a really deep understanding of the history and culture of Tokyo.
5. Moving at your own pace
Private tour guides will accommodate groups of all ages. If you have small children or elderly family members with you, you’ll probably want to take it slow with frequent breaks. And if you have a baby stroller or a person in a wheelchair with you, you’ll find that looking for elevators in train stations is a difficult task as they tend to be located at the far end. If you have a guide with you, this task along with others like finding bathrooms or nursing rooms will be easier and not so time consuming. It’s also a good idea to have the guide schedule your itinerary so that all the sightseeing spots are wheelchair accessible.
A private tour guide in Tokyo rather than a big bus tour is also better for people who want to schedule in activities like trying on a kimono or participating in a traditional tea ceremony. Or for ladies who are much more interested in shopping all over Tokyo than sightseeing.