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Guide Code of Ethics
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Note: All Guild Guides formally agree to follow the Code of Ethics & Business Practice before their applications for Guild membership can be considered for approval by the Guild Board of Directors, and each Guide affirms adherence and commitment to the Code in writing each year.

1. A professional guide follows the rules and regulations at all sites and in all facilities where he/she takes visitors.

2. A professional guide follows the policies of the company for whom the guide works. A guide does not accept nor solicit jobs from clients of the company that hired him/her without the consent of the company, nor should a guide attempt to divert to another person or company business from the company that hired him/her. All business related communication with the client should be made through the company. A professional guide understands that decisions regarding continued service with a repeat client is the responsibility of the tour company not the guide.

3. A professional guide accepts each tour as a serious commitment and cancels only when he or she is physically unable to perform the work; under such circumstances, he or she shall provide as much advance notice to the client as possible.

4. A professional guide does not solicit gratuities.

5. A professional guide does not initiate or encourage patronage of souvenir shops or other retail establishments for the purpose of obtaining commissions for themselves or their coach operators.

6. A professional guide does not abuse complimentary meal privileges offered by food establishments.

7. A professional guide cooperates with other tour groups and maintains ethical and professional conduct at all times, cultivating a positive relationship with all colleagues.

8. A professional guide respects the research and intellectual property, copyrighted or otherwise, of other guides by not recording, quoting without permission, plagiarizing, or taking as one’s own, another guide’s commentary or individual presentation technique.

9. A professional guide provides a skilled presentation of knowledge, interprets and highlights surroundings, informs, and maintains objectivity and enthusiasm in an engaging manner.

10. A professional guide is prepared for each tour when the itinerary is furnished in advance.

11. A professional guide is responsible for reporting on time and for meeting appointments and schedules within the guide’s control.


12. A professional guide is sensitive to the interests and values of the tour group and does not share his/her personal views on controversial subjects such as lifestyle, religion, and politics.

13. A professional guide maintains a wide range of knowledge of the city, including its history, architecture, cultural and political life, and local folklore. A professional guide keeps current on new exhibits, seasonal events, and other changes throughout the city. A professional guide does not give commentary using unsupported facts.


14. A professional guide is knowledgeable about the routes for all tours. This includes familiarity with the traffic laws as well as the idiosyncrasies of Washington traffic. A professional guide works in harmony with coach operators and when requested, informs the operator of the route in a calm, polite, and timely fashion.

15. A professional guide maintains good personal hygiene and uses proper judgment in dressing appropriately for all tours.

Revised October 11, 2016