Tour escorts are those appointed by tour operators to accompany outbound tour groups and to take care of the participants throughout the whole journey. With a view to raising the standard of tour escorts, the TIC set up an Outbound Tour Escort Accreditation System on 1 July 1999, under which all tour escorts assigned by member agents to lead outbound tours must hold a valid Tour Escort Pass (formerly known as "Certified Tour Escort Card"). Information about accredited tour escorts can be found in the Outbound Tour Escort Directory .
Member agents must note that tour escorts who have passed the Certificate Examination for Outbound Tour Escorts are not allowed to lead outbound tour groups unless they possess:
- a valid Tour Escort Pass issued by the TIC ( sample ); or
- The "Acknowledgement of Application for the Tour Escort Pass" issued by the TIC ( sample ); or
- The "Acknowledgement of Application for the renewal of the Tour Escort Pass" issued by the TIC ( sample ).
Accredited tour escorts may visit Member Agent Vacancies of this website for openings in travel agencies. They may also register their skills and contact information in the Profile Registration section in order for travel agents to find suitable candidates online for recruitment.
Certificate Course for Outbound Tour Escorts and Certificate Examination
The TIC has specially organised a Certificate Course for Outbound Tour Escorts for those who wish to obtain the Tour Escort Pass.
People who have completed the Certificate Course with an attendance record of 100% are qualified to sit the Certificate Examination. Candidates who have passed the examination will be awarded a certificate. The TIC will notify them in writing of the examination results in four to five weeks' time after the examination. Telephone enquiries about examination results will not be entertained. People who have completed the Certificate Course and have passed the Certificate Examination must apply for the Tour Escort Pass within two years after being notified of their passing the examination.
Application for Tour Escort Pass
The time limit for first-time applications for the Pass is extended from six months to two years (counting from the day on which the examination results were sent out by the TIC). If qualified applicants apply for the Pass after the application deadline, they will have to pass the Certificate Examination for Outbound Tour Escorts before submitting their application.
Application requirements for the Tour Escort Pass
- 18 years old or above;
- Holders of the Hong Kong Permanent Identity Card, or holders of the Hong Kong Identity Card who are not subject to any condition of stay;
- Holders of the certificate of the TIC’s Certificate Course for Outbound Tour Escorts, or other certificates recognised by the TIC and have passed the relevant examination;
- Secondary school graduates [Note] or equivalent or above;
- Holders of a valid first aid certificate or attendance certificate issued by one of the following six institutions: the Hong Kong Red Cross, Hong Kong St. John Ambulance, the Auxiliary Medical Service, The Hong Kong Life Saving Society, the Hong Kong Police Force and the Hong Kong Fire Services Department; or having completed a training course in first aid and holding a valid certificate to that effect issued by an organisation approved by the Commissioner for Labour; or having attended the TIC's first aid talk (In-service medical professionals or those having retired for not more than two years may apply for exemption but relevant supporting documents must be presented);
- Signing of a declaration stating that the applicant is physically and mentally fit to be a tour escort, and that there is no other reason that will cause the TIC to consider him/her not fit and proper to be a tour escort; and
- Declaration of any criminal conviction in Hong Kong or elsewhere in accordance with the Declaration Form provided by the TIC.
Definition of "secondary school graduates":
- Completion of Form 5 or Year 11 under the old secondary education system (5-2-3 education system) of Hong Kong or the British-style education system; or
- Completion of Senior Secondary 3 or the 12th Grade under the new secondary education system (3-3-4 education system) of Hong Kong or the US-style education system.
Renewal of Tour Escort Pass
The Pass is valid for three years. Pass holders may apply for renewal of their Pass three months before it expires.
Holders of the Tour Escort Pass will be exempted from taking the Certificate Examination if they renew their Pass within two years after the expiry of the Pass . The new Pass will be valid for three years, counting from the day following the day on which the old Pass expires.
Pass holders who renew their Pass more than two years after expiry of the Pass will have to pass the Certificate Examination in order to apply for a new Pass. Candidates who fail the examination may take a resit, and the number of attempts allowed is not limited. The new Pass will be valid for three years, counting from the day on which the Pass is issued.
Pass holders are required to return their old Pass when collecting a new one. Those who have lost their old Pass must submit the completed Declaration of Loss of Tour Escort Pass together with a renewal application form and other necessary documents in order to obtain a new Pass.
Tour Escort Pass application / renewal applications that require special deliberation
If the applicant has worked as a tour escort without a Tour Escort Pass , or has violated TIC rules while holding an invalid Tour Escort Pass , his/her application or renewal application for the Tour Escort Pass will be referred to the Tourist Guide and Tour Escort Deliberation Committee for special deliberation. In addition, if the applicant has been involved in serious problems of conduct while holding a Tourist Guide Pass , his/her application or renewal application for the Tour Escort Pass will also be handled by the Tourist Guide and Tour Escort Deliberation Committee.
For details, please see the Guidelines on the handling of Tourist Guide Pass/Tour Escort Pass applications or renewal applications which require special deliberation by the Tourist Guide and Tour Escort Deliberation Committee .
Change of contact informationChange of name
The TIC may disseminate news or other information to tour escorts by various means (including SMS and email). In order to keep in contact with the TIC, tour escorts should notify the TIC of any changes in their contact information (correspondence address, telephone number and email address) by completing the form available here and returning it to the TIC Industry Training Department.
Tour escorts who wish to change the name on their Tour Escort Pass should download the Application Form for the Change of Name on the Tour Escort Pass , and return the completed form to the TIC Industry Training Department.
Handy Tips for Tour Escorts
The TIC has compiled the "Handy Tips for Tour Escorts", which covers general rules for healthy travel, basic first aid, insurance claims procedures and useful telephone numbers.