15 Comments

  1. Soumya Gayatri
    October 9, 2018 @ 1:25 am

    This is a great post, Jyoti. Loved reading through it. I remember we did a free walking tour in Vietnam with two university students who wished to practice their English with us. Loved every bit of it. I would do it again for sure. And now you have inspired me to visit Sarajevo! 🙂

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 9, 2018 @ 12:09 pm

      Thanks Soumya!
      The Vietnam tour sounds fun. It’s a win-win you got to learn about them and they got to practice English 🙂
      I would totally recommend visit Sarajevo. The history is so fascinating, so recent and so unexpected. I hope they recover and thrive despite all the challenges. I’d be curious to know.

      Reply

  2. arv
    October 10, 2018 @ 4:12 am

    From my limited experience even though these tours are called free but in reality, they are not free. You are expected to pay a tip in the end. If you feel that you haven’t received enough service to warrant a tip the guide at times makes a joke on you which spoils your experience. I prefer to take a paid tour because the guide has a responsibility as far as delivery is concerned and you are clear of what you need to pay. Of course, a lot of people are happy withFree walking tours. Thanks for offering a detailed insight, Jyoti

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 10, 2018 @ 5:52 am

      You’re right Arv, they are tip based. No good thing can or should be free. Well if someone tries to get away without paying for the service as deserved, they deserved to be mocked 🙂 However, all the guides I’ve come across are the nicest people. It may be because they do not want a bad review on Trip Advisor. But also I have not noticed anyone trying to escape without paying their part.
      Like any tip situation, the confusing part is how much is the right amount to pay. I would say, compare with similar tours at that location and tip according to the service level.

      Reply

  3. Anisa
    October 13, 2018 @ 2:32 pm

    I haven’t done many free walking tours but I would love to do more. My favorite has been a Shoreditch (in London) Street Art Tour.

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 13, 2018 @ 5:02 pm

      Hi Anisa, street art tour would be an ideal topic for a free walking tour. Most of the free walking tours are given by people passionate and knowledgeable about local things, essentially topics that large or more established companies can’t cater to.

      Reply

  4. Jamie
    October 13, 2018 @ 6:33 pm

    We are always so focused on photography, that we don’t usually participate in walking tours or ranger-led tours in the National Parks. I think a free walking tour would be good when you arrive in a new area.

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 14, 2018 @ 8:35 am

      I can totally relate 🙂
      Free walking tour or any tour is generally not the best for photography, unless it’s specifically a photography tour.
      But they are great to understand the place and also to find good spots for photography and return with more time.

      Reply

  5. The Starving Artist
    October 13, 2018 @ 7:41 pm

    Great overview of walking tours. I have definitely considered doing one in the future now that I have a better understanding of how they operate & what I can get out of them. Thanks for the post. I’ve pinned it for the future!

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 14, 2018 @ 8:33 am

      I’m delighted to help improve the understanding. It can be intimidating and word ‘free’ in the ‘free walking tour’ can make any one suspicious.

      Reply

  6. Odette
    October 13, 2018 @ 9:16 pm

    Those are some very good points! I have never done free walking tours much, but this most makes me thing I maybe should consider them! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 14, 2018 @ 8:30 am

      They seem to be taking off in popularity… for some good reasons. They provide the intimate experience with the place and its culture at a more affordable price.
      Do check it out next time.

      Reply

  7. Elisabeth
    October 14, 2018 @ 12:59 am

    I really enjoy exploring cities on foot. Thanks for sharing your experience!

    Reply

    • Jyoti
      October 14, 2018 @ 8:29 am

      Couldn’t agree more – On-foot is really the best way to connect with a place.

      Reply

  8. G. Isabelle
    October 20, 2018 @ 7:02 am

    I think they’re great because it’s usually locals and local insights! Also, because it’s dependent on tips the locals’ passion and motivation glows from their words. I’ve done then in EU and South Africa and they provided a lot of good insight!

    Reply

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