10 Essential Things To Check When Booking an Outdoor Professional

10 Essential Things To Check When Booking an Outdoor Professional


4 Minute read | Last updated: March 16, 2024 | Published: March 16, 2024

Booking an Outdoor Professional!

Are you gearing up for an outdoor adventure but unsure about who to trust?

Booking an outdoor professional is a crucial step in ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re planning a hiking trip, rock climbing adventure, or gaining a qualification yourself, here are ten essential things to check before making the decision.

1. Qualifications and Certifications

Look for professionals with relevant certifications and qualifications! Luckily for you, if you are using the Discover a Guide platform, we do this for you. Every professional that is live and verified on our platform has submitted their certificates to our verification process, so you know they are legit! Whatever activity you are interested in doing, there is a professional out there who is qualified. These qualifications demonstrate the instructor’s expertise and commitment to safety and professionalism.

2. Experience

Although an instructor might hold a qualification, it is important to seek professionals with a solid track record of leading successful outdoor adventures. Experience matters, especially in the outdoor environment. The diverse terrain, weather conditions, and group dynamics play a part in every-day scenarios in an outdoor environment. You can easily check a professional’s experience by asking to see their logbook.

Each professional will keep a logbook showing evidence of their competency and experience. To become a qualified outdoor professional, you need to have a certain amount of pre-requisite experience before the assessment course.

A popular type of logbook is the Mountain Training Digital Logbook (DLog). You can find further information regarding the DLog here. Simply ask the professional to share their logbook with you.

3. References

Requesting references from previous clients or employers to gain insight into the professional’s reliability and reputation. Most outdoor professionals have their own company, so checking the reviews is usually an easy one! When using the Discover a Guide platform, each professional will be ranked based on their ratings from their past clients. You can also see reviews on their profiles. Hearing from others who have worked with them can provide valuable feedback.

4. Insurance Cover

It is important to ensure the outdoor professional carries liability insurance coverage for the activities they offer. This protects both you and the professional in the event of accidents or injuries during the adventure.

5. Equipment

Clarify whether the professional provides the necessary equipment or if you need to bring your own. Additionally, ensure that the equipment is well-maintained, up-to-date and suitable for the planned activities. Communication with the professional is key to ensuring all the necessary equipment is brought.

6. Communication Skills

Assess the professional’s communication skills, including their ability to convey instructions clearly, listen to your concerns and expectations, and provide timely updates. Effective communication is essential for facilitating a smooth, safe, and enjoyable outdoor experience.

7. Cost and Contract

Discuss fees, payment terms, cancellation policies, and any other contractual agreements upfront to avoid any misunderstanding later on. Transparency in financial matters ensures a mutually beneficial arrangement for you and the professional.

There are many scenarios that could come into play that might mean your adventure doesn’t happen, like weather conditions, ground conditions, equipment, injury, or illness.

8. Safety Protocols

Inquire about the professionals safety procedures and emergency measures. A comprehensive understanding of safety protocols, including risk assessments and emergency response plans, is crucial for ensuring both your safety and that of professionals.

9. Compatibility

Consider the professional’s personality, teaching style, and approach to outdoor leadership. Choose a professional whose demeanour and methods align with your preferences and expectations for the adventure.

10. Flexibility

An outdoor professional is there to provide a service for you; they should have the ability to adapt to changing circumstances, such as weather conditions, unexpected challenges, or your needs. A flexible, understanding, and adaptable outdoor professional can ensure a seamless experience, regardless of unforeseen circumstances.

Why check?

Booking an outdoor professional is an investment in your safety, enjoyment, and overall outdoor experience. By thoroughly vetting potential candidates based on these ten essential factors, you can confidently choose the right professional to help you unlock the outdoors!

Happy Exploring!



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