Dozens of Barcelona tourist guides authorized by the Generalitat have gathered this Wednesday in front of the Plaza de la Catedral to claim their profession against those who practice it without training, and to visualize the problems they are experiencing due to the stoppage of tourism by COVID -19.
Convened by APIT-Barcelona, with the support of the Association of Guides Enabled by the Generalitat of Catalonia (Aguicat), dozens of people gathered this morning with masks and a safety distance to draw attention to visitors or passers-by who were walking through the old town of the Catalan capital.
With banners such as “Qualified guide, quality tourism”, “No tourists, no income” or “Choose well who guides you”, they have tried to demonstrate that the qualified professionals are the ones who contribute to “generating wealth” with the payment of taxes, as explained to Efe the president of the board of Aguicat, Txell Carreres, who has also denounced the “precarization” of his profession.
And it is that, according to Carreres, the “great majority” of the qualified guides -who are self-employed- are unemployed and will continue this summer “pulling savings” while waiting for tourism to revive, but with the fear that “in autumn comes a new regrowth “.
In addition, around 10% of professionals have already decided to “reconvert” by directing their activity to the local public, or by carrying out other types of work in order to survive.
“The rest of us are starting to work with the public here, but very slowly,” he asserted.
Finally, Carreres regretted that the Generalitat did not help them disseminate their work with, for example, an official list of all licensed guides available at Barcelona tourist offices.