The story appears on

Page A5

August 2, 2010

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Public Services

Tour guide keeps busy, but finds work rewarding

AS one of hundreds of World Expo tour guides, Ma Xiaoyan said her experience has been a mixture of happiness and exhaustion.

The 27-year-old tour guide, who now is quite brown from all the time she has spent in the sun, gave up her work during the summer peak season in her hometown of Urumqi in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region to stay in Shanghai until the end of the Expo.

She works with Shanghai China International Travel Service Co Ltd and serves both Chinese and foreign tour groups. After about two months of work here, she said she now feels like "a half Shanghai native."

Ma usually starts work before 8am and doesn't finish until 9:30pm.

"We leave for the Expo site as early as possible to avoid traffic jams during rush hours," she said. "On the bus I introduce my guests to the pavilions we will visit and some need-to-know points at the site."

Once at the Expo, she leads her groups to one or two pavilions, then they will have free time until assembling in the evening.

But even during the free time, Ma is busy.

"I usually go to other pavilions and try to compose introductions to tell the tourists when we are on the bus," she said.

Ma said being an Expo tour guide is rather different, though equally exhausting, from the same job in Xinjiang.

"I have to talk a lot on the bus here, while in Xinjiang, people usually like to rest during the long journey from one scenic spot to another," she said.

It's usually fairly late at night when her tour groups return to the hotel. After that, Ma usually has to hurry to catch the Metro home.

As an ethnic Hui, eating at the Expo site is complicated for Ma as there are few Islamic restaurants.

"I eat at the Hongchangxing Restaurant or KFC almost every day, because I don't feel at ease with other restaurants," Ma said.

Although work is rather tiresome and difficult, Ma still finds it interesting. For instance, she finds the difference between Chinese and Westerners rather interesting.

In Ma's eyes, Chinese visitors are very different from foreigners in the way they think.

She said Chinese visitors are too enthusiastic about the stamps, while foreigners never seem to want the stamp of pavilions that they didn't visit.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend