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What does a Greeter actually do?
-He/she acquaints the visitors with prominent cultural and historical specificities of Niš and the surroundings. They show the visitors less well known attractions, streets, markets, shops and restaurants which capture the spirit of the city.
-He/she shows the visitors what life in Niš is really like.
-He/she informs the visitors by answering their questions about the public transport, working hours of the banks, the post office and other institutions. In this way the visitors feel more comfortable and secure in the city.
Who are the volunteers? How are they selected?
-The volunteers are the individuals with different interests, ambitions and abilities who live in Niš.
-The team is comprised of 50% of male and 50% of female volunteers. The volunteers are chosen regardless of the race, colour of their skin, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, marital status or disability. Anybody who loves and knows the city, who is eager to form new friendships, to explore new cultures, languages and customs, who is enthusiastic about their city is welcome to become a Greeter. Communication is facilitated and made better by the knowledge of foreign languages, thus, it would be our pleasure to have polyglot volunteers.
-The individuals to be interviewed are chosen after the submitted applications are reviewed. After the interview, the selected volunteers attend the mandatory course when they are acquainted in more detail with the principles on which the Niš Greeter Service is based.
Which visitors usually use the Niš Greeter Service?
-The service is used by anyone who wants to have a ‘friend’ who will be able to show them the city, the inhabitants, the history, culture and the customs from the perspective of a person living in Niš. The service is used by people with specific interests, people who are looking for relaxation, businessmen/businesswomen and their families, people who take part in the manifestations taking place in the city, the clients of the international organisations which operate in the city, exchange students, adventurers, culturologists, journalists and many other people.
How can the visitors learn about the Niš Greeter Service?
-The promotional campaign is conducted in print and electronic media, including newspapers, magazines, tourist guides, television, radio, hotel magazines, tourist information centres etc. In addition, the Tourist Organisation Niš promotes the Niš Greeter Service on trade fairs and the events in which it takes part.
Do the Greeters wear any Greeter Service symbol?
-Anybody who finishes the training and becomes a member of the Niš Greeter Service receives an ID card with the photo and the number. Greeters are required to wear it during the tour.
-The card cannot be used by anybody else. The card must not be used unless the Greeter is on the tour or any other assignment concerning Greeter Service.
-Greeters must not contact any organisation or medium on behalf of the Greeter Service, unless explicitly allowed by the Service.
Where do I meet the visitors before the tour?
-The tours are started at the Tourist Info Centre since it is located in the centre of the city. It is easy to find, thus, the visitors feel more secure. Greeters are required to inform the visitors about the role of the Tourist Info Centre and to enable them use the Tourist Info Centre services.
Are the expenses made during the tour covered by the organization?
-Each person is responsible for their own expenses. Greeters may enter museums, galleries and other sites free of charge, their ID card being their pass.
Can a Greeter accept money for the tour if offered by a visitor?
-Greeter Service is a voluntary service working by the national law of volunteering, according to which it is illegal to accept money for volunteering. If the visitor insists to express his/her gratitude in this way, remind him/her to donate money to the Service and not to you.
Do I have to speak a foreign language to become a Greeter?
-Most of the visitors who require a Greeter are from abroad, thus, the knowledge of English or another foreign language is an advantage in the selection of the Greeters.
Can a person with a disability become a volunteer?
-Of course, everybody who is willing to volunteer is welcome. The enthusiasm for volunteering and the city is much more important than any disability.
How often is a Greeter supposed to be available?
-Greeters should be available at least once a month, two to four hours, which is the approximate duration of a tour.
May I take the visitors to the parts of the city that I am not very familiar with?
-It is of utmost importance to take the visitors to the parts of the city that you love and that you are familiar with. Only in this way will the visitors be able to enjoy the tour.
Should I contact the visitors before we start the tour?
-Yes, when you accept the tour, you will be given the information about the place and time of the visitors’ arrival. It is of utmost importance to contact them before the tour, so that you can make arrangements about the details of the tour. This contact is obligatory as it often happens that the visitors misunderstand the details of the meeting, especially if that is their first visit.
Is there the limited number of people that a Greeter accompanies on the tour?
-Yes, the largest number of people in a group is 6, regardless of whether the group is comprised of children of adults. Niš Greeter Service is based on voluntary service; Greeters are not official tour guides, which is why the number of tourists is limited.
Do I have to be ready for all the weather conditions?
-Yes, the tours are conducted despite the weather conditions. In case of rain, large umbrellas may be taken in Tourist Info Centre (they have to be returned when the visit is over). In case of extremely bad weather conditions, Greeters have to contact the visitors in order to make arrangements about the tour.
What happens if in case of an emergency the Greeter cannot guide a tour?
-If an emergency occurs on the day of the appointed tour, the Greeter is obliged to inform both the group and the organization about it. If an emergency occurs the day before the appointment, the greeter is required to inform the organization, and the organization will inform the group of visitors.
-It is extremely important that our visitors be responsible and not to cancel the tours except in the cases of emergency.
Does the Greeter have to be punctual?
-Since you represent the Service, you have to be punctual. It is desirable that you come to the appointment earlier so that you meet the group in time. In case you cannot avoid being late, you have to contact someone from the group to inform them.
Is the Greeter safe during the tour?
-The security of the Greeters is the priority of the organization. Greeters are not allowed to enter the visitors’ hotel rooms or to invite them to their homes, to use their own car or to go in the visitors’ cars.
Should Greeters encourage the visitors to use the public transport?
-Yes. Public transport is usually the best way to learn more about a city. Greeters should remember that they are with the visitors for a couple of hours, and after they part, the visitors should be able to go around the city on their own. That is why it is of utmost importance to explain to the visitors the functioning of the public transport in the city and the surroundings.
Do I have to comply with all the rules of the Niš Greeter Service?
-You are expected to comply with all the rules in the Global Greeters Network document, since it is the safest and the most professional way to fulfill the Greeter duty.
-In case you refuse to comply with the rules or break the rules stated in the document, you may be expelled from Niš Greeter Service, which keeps right to refuse a potential Greeter for any reason when they estimate that such an action is in the best interest of the Service.
How can I meet a Niš Greeter?
-When your arrival in Niš is confirmed (you have decided on the date of arrival, departure and accommodation), fill in the reservation form to book a Greeter at least two weeks before your arrival.
-During the peak season, (from May to September) and during the holidays such as Christmas or Easter, please, fill in the reservation form as soon as possible.
What is the cost of Niš Greeter Services?
-The voluntary service Niš Greeters is completely free of charge to all the visitors. Each Greeter is a volunteer and fulfills his/her duty in accordance with the Law of Volunteering of the Republic of Serbia.
What are the criteria for selecting my Greeter?
-We will select a Greeter according to the languages the visitors speak as well as according to the common interests of the visitors and the Greeters, if possible. Special interests of the visitors will be taken into consideration as well.
When and how will I receive the information about my greeter?
-In case the selection is finished before your arrival in Niš, you will be informed via telephone or e-mail about your Greeter.
-In case the selection is finished after your arrival in Niš, your hotel/hostel/lodging house will be informed about the details.
What is the difference between a Greeter and a professional tour guide?
-A Greeter becomes your friend who shows you his/her city and the surroundings. You will talk about what it is like to live in Niš, you will learn to use the public transport, you will find out about the Greeter’s favorite restaurants, shops and other locations.
-A Greeter is not a professional licensed tour guide and does not know all the historic facts about a particular location. The knowledge of the Greeters is based on their life in the city.
Does the Niš Greeter Service has the prearranged tours for which I can apply?
-Niš Greeters do not have the prearranged tours for visitors.
-Each visit with a Greeter is unique; there is no prearranged route or theme of the tour.