Tour Company Affiliate Membership

Guild Affiliate Members are Tour Companies who bring tour groups to Washington, DC and hire Guild Guides.

Apply as an Affiliate Member

Apply as an Affiliate Member!

$190 Annual Dues

Browse our Directory of Affiliate Members

The benefits of being an Affiliate member are numerous. The list below identifies some of the most important. 

Access to Top Quality Professional Guild Guides:


Guild Guides are Professionals

  • Guide tour guide members pass a written test administered by the Guild, provide three letters of recommendation attesting to competence as a tour guide, and all applications are reviewed and approved by the Guide Board of Directors before an applicant becomes certified as a Guild member.

Guild Guides Participate in Guild Training and Continuing Education Programs:

  • Upon becoming a Guild member, Guild Guides enter a Professional Development Program (PDP), which focuses on enhancing members’ skills and knowledge through training workshops and classes in communication, presentation, group management, and motor coach guiding. Guild Guides must pass a written examination and practical evaluation to advance to Guild Certified Guide membership; and

  • After becoming a Guild Certified Guide, members may continue their professional development by joining the Certified Master Guide Program (CMG), which hones their tour guiding skills through advanced education and training and requires Guild Certified Guides to contribute time and talent toward promoting and enhancing tourism in Washington, DC. Members must complete the program within five years after commencement, including passing a comprehensive written examination, oral presentation(s) to CMG’s and selected Affiliate member representatives and practical evaluation.

Guild Guides Subscribe to High Professional Standards:

  • The Guild's Code of Ethics and Business Practice ensures that member guides follow the highest standards of the profession and abide by the policies of the company for whom they are working. As a contractor to a company, a guide shall not accept or solicit jobs directly from a client for whom the guide is currently conducting or has conducted a tour; nor shall a guide attempt to divert business from that company.

Updated Information for Tours:

  • Access to the Guild's Yahoo e-mail group which provides real-time updates on activities, emergencies, unanticipated closings, etc., at sites tour groups may be visiting.

Attendance at Guild Business Meetings:

  • Affiliate members are welcome to attend all Guild Business Meetings held monthly (except during the busy tour season April-May-June). Affiliate members have the opportunity to network with the Guild's Tour Guides and the Guild's Friends (representatives from business establishments that tour groups frequent) and also to hear from speakers who are experts in their field (relating to the tourism industry).

The Guild Website:

  • The Guild website has had a recent professional ‘refresh’ to enhance the appearance to make it more appealing and accessible to both members and the public. The website provides (for members only) a list of all sites in DC and the surrounding area with information about the site's point of contacts, hours of operation, fees, and much more. The website also has for members only a calendar of events, online newsletters, and more.

The Capital Guide Online:

  • The Capital Guide Online features news of upcoming education and training events, Guild Business Meetings and locations, spotlights Guild initiatives and accomplishments, and offers advertising opportunities — it's a 'must-read' for members.

Ease of Hiring Professional Guides through HireGuides4DC:

  • By completing a form found at “Tour Operators Hire a Tour Guide" on the Guild's website, Job Notices are quickly posted on the GuildGuides Yahoo e-mail account and rapidly responded to by Guild Guides.

The Guild facilitates hiring professional Guides through the Guild Membership Directory:

  • The Annual Directory lists all Guild Guides, Affiliate Members, and Friends (vendors/suppliers). Guide listings include contact information, membership status, foreign language proficiency, and brief biography.

  • Affiliate Members have access to the members-only section of the Guild website and the listing of Guild Members. Information provided by Guild Guides may include personal websites and photos. An email can be sent to any Guild Member with a simple click.

Showcase / Job Fair:

  • Annual Job Fair for Affiliate Members to meet Guides and conduct interviews prior to hiring a Guild Guide. Guild Friends participate in the Showcase as vendors/suppliers of services that tour groups use and frequent (i.e., hotels, restaurants, museums, and tourist sites).

Advocacy for Tourism - Government and Tourism Industry Liaison Committee:

  • As a recognized stakeholder whose voice is sought by the tourism industry, the Guild has a 'seat at the table' before governmental and tourism-related organizations.

Promotion of Tour Company Affiliate Members:

  • Affiliate Members are listed in the public access section of Guild website: www.washingtondctourguides.com and are searchable by keywords chosen by the tour companies themselves. To bring traffic to the site and for search engine optimization there are pages of information about sightseeing in Washington, DC.