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Tourist Guide Qualification Extension Update

04 Jun 2024

Here is an update on the legacy tourist guide qualifications extension.

Legacy Tourist Guide Qualification Extension Update

The Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation has published a Government Gazette outlining directives on the implementation and transitional arrangements for pre-2009 qualifications under the SAQA Act of 1995. The Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO), SAQA, and DHET are collaborating to ensure a smooth transition and enhance the national education system.

Effective June 2024, changes are being implemented to guarantee all qualifications are relevant, up-to-date, and aligned with industry needs. This involves phasing out pre-2009 qualifications and introducing new, high-quality occupational qualifications. These new qualifications will not only address current industry requirements but will also better prepare learners for the challenges of an evolving job market.

The QCTO has provided a list of which qualifications fall part of that, and we are relieved and happy to say that the Tourist Guiding qualification and its subsequent unit standards and learner programmes are part of that!


In an online meeting hosted by CATHSSETA, it was mentioned that all "legacy qualifications and skills programmes" stand. This means that you will not be expected to do the new guide qualification unless you want to. This will then apply the expectation on the National Department of Tourism to accept new guides with the current qualifications and register them accordingly.

This also means that in the creation of the new guide qualifications, an accessible RPL process will need to be put in place to make it easy for people who hold the current qualification to get the new one easily at not at great cost.

Now we wait for CATHSSETA to release the list of unit standards and learner programmes and their new expiration dates. We also await CATHSSETA to announce the date that we will start with the mapping process of the new Tourist Guiding qualification.

*Update 2 July: CATHSSETA has released a statement saying that ALL qualifications are now being extended.

As you all by now know, SA AIA has been a part of the process from 2021 and will strive to make sure that industry is represented and kept abreast of the upcoming workshops. Industry must be engaged in its entirety - and it is our mission to make sure of that.

Government Gazette:

Download PDF • 3.08MB

List of Qualifications:

Download PDF • 387KB


CATHSSETA ETQA Circular 4 CATHSSETA Government Gazette (revised) (003)
Download PDF • 1.14MB

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