October 2, 2015
One thing that European Focus Private Tour guides never do is waste your precious exploring time on what we call “Shopping for Tips” This is something that every single bus tour and cruise does. Their tour guides get paid peanuts, and so they supplement their income with a percentage (from 10% to 20%) of whatever their customers spend in a particular store. So, when a tour guide wants to stop and “show” you something, such as a “wonderful local store with great wine and schnapps” what they are really doing is setting you up for later shopping and the lining of their own pocket.
We might make suggestions on where you can go to obtain a certain item on your list. But, since you’re not wearing a name tag (as cruise and bus tour passengers are required to do) the cashiers at those stores have no idea to whom the commission goes – and that’s because we have never once been “on the take.”