This question might be somewhat irrelevant in January 2020 (described below) but I ask it anyway to broaden general knowledge

Certain countries do not allow people which aren't their citizens to work as tour guides within their borders.

I grasp that some travel agencies try to "bypass" this restriction by giving what I can name:

Remote Tourism Sales (RTS) and/or Fluent Remote Consultation (FRC)

By this paradigm, an employee acts as a salesman and/or an fluent "24/7" hours, allegedly, remote consultant, advising "hesitant" or "anxious" tourists fearing from various problems and scams; Thus, that remote agent acts, for example, as a:

  • "hotel problems sorter"
  • "vehicle renting adviser"
  • "costs of living counselor"
  • "psychotherapist" to be somewhat metaphoric.

If the remote agent speaks the local language fluently or fluent enough this person might be promoted to be a manager of a team consisted of such remote agents.

This service is usually given from people of nationality X to customers of the same nationality who are unable to communicate in English well enough and/or with a relevant local language well enough and allegedly need sales and/or guidance in their own language → although in my opinion, as of January 2020, with currently available translation tools and rising in automation and simplification of sales and translation operations and a wider availability of English teaching in the world in general such services are becoming somewhat redundant.

My problem

I am not familiar with the professional terminology for a salesman - remote guider and for a solely remote guider (one which doesn't deal with sales).

My question

What is the term for remote tourism consultation as a "bypass" for tour guiding in certain countries?

That is to ask; what are the professional terms for the described salesman - remote guider and for a solely remote guider which allegedly somewhat bypassing restrictions of some countries in which only their citizens are allowed to be tour guides?

  • 1
    I'm not really sure how this differs from just "travel agent." A travel agent is someone who sells travel, including hotels and car rentals, and a good travel agent is available remotely to help solve problems. A travel agent who is particularly strong in this area might market those abilities (advertising 24/7 assistance during the trip, language skills, concierge services, etc...) to customers who would like more hand-holding during their trip. I don't think "remote guider" would be a descriptive term unless the person is actually guiding, such as interpretation at sites of interest. Jan 28, 2020 at 23:10
  • I don't think a general answer can be made. What one country means by these words may well differ from what another country means. Jan 29, 2020 at 1:37
  • Fixer, perhaps?
    – Mark Mayo
    Jan 29, 2020 at 3:44
  • 1
    Trafalgar calls a similar person a "Travel Director". I assume they additionally will take an official tour guide when required. I can't remember which company I saw Egypt and Israel with (1987) but there was a "fixer" in Cairo pointing out a cheap money changer and finding us medicine when everyone was sick. I don't remember her title.
    – mkennedy
    Jan 29, 2020 at 23:03
  • I will gladly accept and upvote an answer based on information in the question and comments.
    – user89343
    Feb 5, 2020 at 2:26


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