People often ask if they need to go to guide school to become a guide. Typically there are no education requirements before you can become a guide. Some states do have extra training or certifications to become a guide but it varies greatly by start. However, getting a formal education in guiding such as going to a guide school only helps and if you are starting your own guide service formal guide schooling is a competitive advantage since you will be able to list that as additional skills you have.
Many guide schools are located in areas where the guiding conditions can become extreme. As examples, states such as Montana, Wyoming, Alaska, Colorado, and Wyoming all have guide schools located there. If you search the internet for guide schools you will find several options and we do recommend doing research and asking for student referrals prior to making your final selection.
Besides guide schools there is other training that you can do in order to become a guide. One example is taking CPR and first aid and training courses. These survival skills can be useful when you are out in the wilderness with your clients and some type of emergency happens.
Firearm training is another good training to take to become a guide. There are some states that have firearm training required to go hunting but even for those who don’t it is a good idea to take these courses because you may also need to show proper firearm safety techniques to your clients.
Another type of training to besides guide school that will add to your guiding success is customer service training courses. Jobs as guides are jobs working with people and a key factor in satisfying customers is providing them good customer service. Many local chambers of commerce or community education programs offer some type of customer service training classes.
Again, any of these types of extra trainings are beneficial to your skills as a hunting or fishing guide to serve your clients better. In addition, they are excellent marketing items that you can add to your website and other marketing information on your guide service. The more prospective clients feel that you are qualified for guiding the more likely they are to book with you.
There are so many options to choose from when getting training and education for guiding. The most important part is to ensure that you have any state required training before entering the profession. By contacting your states wildlife office you will be able to get the correct answer if guide school or training is required.
In conclusion, not all states require formal guide school. However, be sure that you check with your states wildlife office to ensure you have any official requirements fulfilled. If your state does not have formal requirements it would still be a good idea to look into other trainings such as firearms training, customer service training, first aid training and CPR training. Not only will these skills be useful while on the job but these trainings can also be helpful in marketing to potential clients.