Cathy Whelan – Refreshing Her Knowledge as a Tour Guide to Open New Opportunities

Tour Guide


Cathy Whelan from Dublin was working in the tour guide industry and already held qualifications when she decided to study her level 6 tour guiding course at Portobello Institute.

Cathy wanted to refresh her knowledge and learn new material in the industry she is passionate about. She also has ambitions to teach courses like this one, putting her expertise into practice for new tour guides and opening new career opportunities.

I was already in the industry. I did the course many years ago and wanted to refresh. I had worked on the other side of the industry in coordination and then went abroad too so I was keen to learn new material and possibly consider teaching the course. 

It keeps my mind active in low season and I learn and relearn new things,” she said.

Cathy chose to study at Portobello Institute because the online delivery of the course suited her lifestyle. She thoroughly enjoyed the course and saw it as an excellent networking opportunity to meet new people who share her passion for tour guiding.

I loved the course. I was with a great group and we all gelled. We stay in touch now as a result of working together on the course. The best thing was the tutor, Jim Dempsey, He is a great teacher and fun to learn from. The new friends and easy-to-access playback were great too,” she said. 

Cathy was happy in her role running her own company Independent Tours – Ireland before studying but now feels more confident than ever in the career she wants.

I am definitely more confident again in my knowledge after refreshing. Some days I am planning tours online at home. On other days I may work at meet and greet at the airport. Then other days I do walking tours or step in as a guide for the large tour operators.

I thrive on teaching people new things too and interacting with new people and cultures.

It gives me the variety I need to avoid boredom and keep me challenged so yes, I fulfil my potential,” she added. 

Get in Contact

If you are interested in any of our Travel & Tourism degrees or courses, you can check out our department page.

If you are interested in choosing the course for the career you want, you can book a consultation call with our expert Travel & Tourism advisor Brandon McLean here, email [email protected] or call 01 892 0035.

Cathy Whelan – Refreshing Her Knowledge as a Tour Guide to Open New Opportunities Cathy Whelan – Refreshing Her Knowledge as a Tour Guide to Open New Opportunities