April 16, 2008 - G Adventures tour leader Maria Sol Aguinaga has been nominated for the 2008 Paul Morrison Guide Award, which celebrates the achievements of the world’s best tour leaders. Nominated by travellers who have been on her tours of the Patagonia region in South America, Aguinaga is now up against seven other of the world’s top guides for the award, which will be handed out at a special evening ceremony at The Royal Geographical Society in London on October 2.
“I can hardly imagine another job I could possibly enjoy more than helping others to appreciate the beauty of the nature, people and culture in Patagonia, all the while learning about myself from a constant exchange with fellow guides, travellers, friends and people along the way,” said Aguinaga. “I have met amazing people on all the trips I have led for G Adventures and have enjoyed teaching them what I have learned from life and my experiences travelling.”
In order to achieve the coveted position of G Adventures tour leader, Aguinaga completed an extensive screening process. All potential tour leaders are first screened through a comprehensive G Adventures’ on line application system. The second stage consists of telephone interviews exploring their work, life and travel experiences, as well as many behavioural based questions that help G Adventures determine their ability to deal with any difficult situations that may arise during the course of a trip. The final step is a face to face interview that allows G Adventures to evaluate personality as well as how they deal with both people and pressure among other things. Guides continue to receive ongoing in-field training for as long as they lead G Adventures tours.
The criteria for this award asks travellers from around the globe to nominate the tour guide who has most ensured they had not only an enjoyable holiday, but a truly inspirational and unforgettable one. The award is looking not merely for a fun and knowledgeable guide, but one who makes a holiday into a life changing experience. Sponsored by Telegraph Travel and Wanderlust magazine, the Paul Morrison Guide Award is named after the late founder of the magazine and is now in its third year. This year's judging panel includes author Bill Bryson, Rough Guides founder Mark Ellingham, and Telegraph Group Travel Editor Graham Boynton.
“Maria Sol has been one of our most consistent and highly praised tour leaders since she started with us,” said Bruce Poon Tip, CEO of G Adventures. “I receive compliments and e-mails from hundreds of travellers every year commending our incredible tour leaders from every corner of the globe. G Adventures takes pride in our leaders who live the G Adventures brand every day and deliver a truly unique experience to our travellers. Maria Sol truly deserves this recognition and we all wish her the best of luck in October!"