Have you heard of the Global Greeter network? Basically, it’s an international association of Greeter programs around the world. What is a Greeter? Someone who shows tourists around their home town or city for free. Not interested in guided tours? This might just change your mind…
|photo by James Cridland @creative commons|
What is a Greeter?
A Greeter is someone so passionate about the town, city or area that he/she lives in, that they love nothing more than showing visitors its hidden secrets. Greeters don’t get paid, and aren’t professional tour guides (so you won’t be going around any museums). They will take you off the beaten path and into their own lives, giving you a unique insight into what it’s like to live as a local.
Parisian d’un jour
I asked the team at Parisian d’un jour, a Greeters network based in Paris, a couple of questions about how it all works, and this is what they had to say:
What’s the story behind Parisien d’un jour?
Parisien d’un jour (Paris greeters) started in 2007 in Paris. The idea came from a greeter based in the Big Apple, which had been going since 1992. In Paris, our goal is to show than Parisians can be friendly, and actually nice to visitors! We want to share our knowledge of Paris, far away from the main touristic places, the areas where we actually live. Volunteer Greeters lead their groups around Paris and its neighbouring regions.
Can anyone be a Greeter or do you have to be Parisian?
It’ s better to have known the city for a while to be a Greeter: enough to be able to really share the place where you live or work. Our volunteers speak several languages.
How long are the tours, on average?
Each volunteer builds their own itinerary, at least it’s between 2 or 3 hours. There’s no rush at all!
Do guides expect a tip afterwards, or does tipping happen via the website?
Our tours are free and no tips are expected at all for the greeters, who give any money directly back to Parisien d’un jour. However, donations are always welcome, as we’re a non profit organisation!
Can you choose an area you’d like to visit/is there a list of what areas are covered by Greeters in Paris?
To find out more about Parisian d’un jour and the concept of Greeters, click here!
|photo by ParisSharing @creative commons|