people state their desire to work in the travel industry. Many start
out as a tour guide as illustrated by our illustrious ‘Dragoman’,
the term given the man who met your sailing ship, or steamer at a
Middle Eastern port and acted as your local fixer and tour guide
whilst one, ‘took in the antiquities’. As you can see by this chaps
promotional photograph (for his actual advertising pamphlet!) he was
well equipped for the region. Sadly, it seems one has to be
similarly equipped for many of these areas today! And yes, this was
the source for the naming of the Overland Tour company Dragoman.
you might not like the idea of tour guiding. I bet you've never
thought of these crazy travel-related jobs
Warmer, London, UK
getting into a bed and warming it up for someone? Staff at the The
Holiday Inn in Kensington, in London, are expected to don an
all-in-one sleeper suit, jump into a guest's bed and 'warm it up'
as part of the hotel's five-minute 'human bed warming' service.
'It's like having a giant hot water bottle in your bed,' says
Holiday Inn spokeswoman, Jane Bednall.
Jester, Vienna, Austria
famed Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, the Rogner Bad
Blumau in Styria, Austria is built around therapeutic springs and
aims to create a 'harmonious, sustainable total work of art.' It
also employs a hotel jester. For 1,400 euros a month, it is the
jester's role to treat guests like royalty – by mocking them and
singing funny songs about them.
Safety Engineer, St Thomas
It may be
funny in Tom and Jerry cartoons, but being hit on the head by a
falling coconut is not funny. That’s why the Ritz Carlton on the
Caribbean island of St Thomas employ a Coconut Safety Engineer.
simple job, really. Shimmy up the resort’s palm trees, which tower
from 20 to 60 feet high, and pick the ripened coconuts before they
fall. Better still, you get to keep the coconuts and sell them at
the local markets.
Police, Venice, Italy
to Venice’s city fathers, the biggest pests in this water bound city
isn’t the pigeons, it’s the uncouth tourists who traipse around
shirtless, sit down in the middle of sidewalks and munch sandwiches.
Since 2008, ‘volunteer angels’ have been on patrol to put their
shirts on and pack away their paninis. The major perk is the power
to fine tourists who are slow to comply.
Zürich Airport, Switzerland
airport in the world has a problem with birds flying into the path
of planes, damaging engines, windshields and fuselage. But at Zurich
Airport things are a bit more serious than that. Surrounded by
nature reserve, it’s not unusual for the odd deer or wild boar to
wander into the path of a Ryanair flight touching down from Stansted.
airport employs three armed hunters to patrol the airport’s wilder
areas for any winged or four-legged interlopers. They also get to
keep what they kill.
Surfing Coach, San Diego
surfer and dog owner, Teevan McManus, is employed by the Loews
Coronado Bay Resort & Spa in San Diego to teach dogs belonging to
guests how to surf. ‘Dogs are faster learners than humans,’ he says.
‘Four legs versus two!’ Hang twenty, dude!
Sunglasses Doctor, Lanai, Hawaii
nothing worse than a screw working loose on your sunglasses when
your relaxing in the sun. That’s why the Four Seasons Resort at
Manele Bay, in Hawaii employ a person solely to clean lenses,
tighten screws and otherwise ensure guests’ eye-wear crises are
resolved. Known as Dr Shades, he patrols the poolside from 11am to
3pm wearing a Dr Shades shirt and a utility belt holding the tools
of his very particular trade.