In this post, we’ll explain to you how to choose the best meeting point, how to help travelers recognize you, and how to make the most of this place!

Earn more money and look more professional!

Free Walking Tour guide holding a green umbrella and talking to a traveler at the meeting point of the tour in Amsterdam.

If your meeting point is difficult to find, travelers might come late, which can delay your tour and look unprofessional. Morevover, travelers may also never reach the starting point, and in this case, you’re losing money.

How to choose the perfect meeting point?

Put yourself in the travelers’ shoes. They know very little about your city, so it’s easy for them to get lost and be late. That’s why we recommend to make your starting point easy to reach, both for you and for them.

You will have the perfect meeting point if it’s:

  • Close. Think about where most travelers stay in your city, and try to make the meeting point close to this area.
  • Accessible. It must be easy to get to the meeting point by using public transport (bus, subway,…) or by walking.
  • Famous. It’s always easier to find a famous place that’s popular with tourists. This way, the hotel or normal people walking in the street can also help travelers get oriented better on how to reach your meeting point. 
  • Easily recognizable. Maybe there are many people at your meeting point, so it could be difficult to find you. When specifying the meeting point, think about the first thing that can be seen at your meeting point. It will help a lot of travelers. It can be a big clock, a tower, a McDonald’s, the tourist office, etc.
  • Adapted to the weather. No one likes to wait in the rain or in bright sunlight during summer. That’s why it’s best to choose a meeting point that avoid these scenarios or that allows you to move only a few meters from that spot to get some shelter.
  • Specific. You can take an example of a good meeting point from other gurus, but it’s important that at the time of your tour, you are the only one that travelers can find there. If there are other gurus, other groups, travelers can get confused and go with someone else…
  • In the upper part of your tour itinerary. If you start in the upper part of your city, then it will be much easier for your group to walk down than the opposite. Travelers end up less tired and you go faster.
Gurus waiting for travelers at the meeting point.

How to help travelers find you easily?

  • Have a distinctive element. You can carry an umbrella, wear a colorful scarf, a backpack, a “free walking tour” flag, glasses, cap, … It must be something special and that you always have with you, no matter the weather or the season. If you want to make an umbrella and T-shirts with the GuruWalk logo, just leave us a message and we will send you the logo picture in high quality.
Gurus waiting for travelers at the meeting point.
Fill in the field ‘how to find me’. If you go on ‘edit tour’, in the first tab, you will find a field ‘how to find me’ where you can give recommendations to travelers on how to find you at the starting point. It will be shown on your tour page and will be sent in the reservation email that is received by travelers. 

There you must include 2 things:
The specific meeting place (McDonald’s, statue, stairs …);
The distinctive element that you will wear (scarf, umbrella, …).
Example of the field 'how to find me' which appears on the tour page on GuruWalk
Example of a guru in Athens
Example of the field 'how to find me' which appears on the tour page on GuruWalk
Example of a guru in Athens
  • Give recommendations before the tour. It can be in your welcome message when travelers book your guruwalk, and / or in your reminder message a few days before the tour. These are some of the things you could send:
    • Day and time of the booking;
    • Google Maps link of the meeting point (shortlink recommended);
    • Pictures of the meeting point;
    • Video of the starting point and how to get there;
    • Distinctive element; 
    • How to reach the meeting point, how to buy public transport tickets, prices, etc.
    • Your phone number (WhatsApp,…); 
    • Writing that it is important to arrive on time, what happens if you are late, …
Profile picture of two gurus of GuruWalk having a great quality.
  • Be the first at the meeting point. We recommend for you to be there at least 15 minutes before the tour starts, which is when the first travelers start arriving. If they don’t see you at the starting point, travelers could be confused and think they are at the wrong place, which can create a bad experience.
  • Be accessible. While you wait for the travelers, you should look like you are waiting for them and not seem busy, looking at your mobile phone, listening to music, reading,… Otherwise, travelers may get the wrong impression or have a bad image of you or just think that you are not their guru.
  • Recognize your travelers. The best gurus look for their travelers at the meeting point. If you see people who seem lost, looking at something on their mobile phone, it’s for sure your travelers looking at their booking details to find you!
  • Ask travelers. Ask those who came to the tour: “Was it easy to get there? If not, why?” In addition, ask also those who didn’t show up: “Did you get lost on the way?” This way you will get their feedback and prevent it from happening again.
  • Have only one meeting point. If you have several tours, we advise you to choose the same meeting point, if possible. As a result, you make it easier when you invite travelers to join your other tours.

How to edit the meeting point on the platform?

It’s very easy. Go to your tour page and click on ‘edit tour’. You will reach the first tab ‘Location’.

It’s important to FIRST change the address in “Where does the tour take place?” and then adjust the pin on the map. And not the opposite, otherwise it won’t work 😉

Screenshot of the edition of a tour on the GuruWalk website. Here about the change of the meeting point of the tour.

There you also have the possibility of giving more specific directions in the field ‘how to find me’.

Did you do the changes? Then don’t forget to click on ‘Save’ and that’s it!

Take advantage of the meeting point

  • Get more travelers on your way to the tour.

On your way to the meeting point, you may walk near hotels where travelers are staying. 

Why not explain to them a little about your activity?

You can leave flyers and posters and say that you will come at that time to pick up travelers at the hotel reception. For the hotel, it’s great because it gives them one more activity to offer to its clients without having to organize anything. If the hotel is very cooperative, it will even let you know if it has people interested in your tour (this way you can organize your time better). Otherwise, you can always offer them an incentive such as a small commission for every traveler that comes from the hotel.

  • Get more travelers at the meeting point.

As we said, the best starting points are the more touristic places in your city. These are the perfect spots to attract more travelers on your tour. Therefore, be there 30 minutes before with an umbrella or a flag inviting travelers to join, and intrigued travelers will ask you more about the ‘free walking tour’.

Tour guide in Cambridge with a flag of GuruWalk inviting travelers to join her free walking tour.

In addition, if you choose the same meeting point as a big free walking tour agency, but do the tour 30 minutes after them, you could also welcome the travelers who booked the tour of the agency but who were late and didn’t end up joining the tour.

Upcoming posts: “How to manage travelers at the meeting point?” And “What to do when a traveler is late?” 🙂

And what about you? Where is your starting point and why did you choose that particular place?