Our first China adventures of the year have departed, which means the 2019 season is officially well underway! Here at The Dragon Trip, we strive hard to make our tours better year on year, which is why we organised a training weekend for our Adventure Leaders back in March. We spoke to Thijs, our China & Indonesia Adventure Manager, to find out what they got up to!
On Friday morning we started our training weekend with a big introduction round. For different reasons, we’re starting the new season with an almost completely new team of Adventure Leaders, so we had a lot of new faces coming from all across China. We also had some of the familiar veteran-guides on the ground this year welcoming our trips.
We picked Hangzhou as the destination for our training weekend as it is a new destination on our itinerary this year. This way, all guides could get to know the area and be able to talk about it to all of our Dragons on the ground. Although we had heavy rain for nearly 2 days, it didn’t stop us from having a good time together!
With assistance from our booking team in Shanghai, we started the day with some training about our company, our products and discussed the role of an Adventure Leader. We went into procedures for accommodation and transportation bookings and took our time to discuss our itinerary in detail, to make sure everybody was aware of what happens in the other parts of the trip. After a fruitful training session, we stretched our legs by taking a stroll near the famous West Lake. Even though the rain was pouring down, West Lake was as beautiful as ever. Although, we were happy to be back in our warm meeting room again, where our Head of Adventure Tours Management, Evan Webb, held his presentation about emergency situations. We discussed the best ways to handle an emergency situation and practised some realistic situations that could happen.
Afterwards a day full of learning, we played a teambuilding activity in the old city centre of Hangzhou! Each team had to find answers to questions in the old town, as well as some photo and video challenges. To finish off a busy day, we went over to the KTV where we all sang our favourite songs!
On Saturday we showed once again that safety is The Dragon Trip’s number one priority, by having a full day of first-aid training in our hostel. Thanks to the handsome (according to the ladies) trainer, everybody was really enthusiastic about this and the full day was spend practising CPR, putting on bandages and curing broken shoulders. As it was still raining the entire day, we relaxed in the hostel during our free time and kept practising what we learned in class today.
Our hostel in Hangzhou was situated on a nice street with great restaurants, including the famous “Grandmother’s Home” which was our Adventure Leader’s favourite. The most famous dish was the West Lake Beef Soup, but other sweet and spicy dishes are also famous in Hangzhou.
We kicked off Sunday morning with the first aid exam and we’re proud to tell you that 13 of our Adventure Leaders passed the exam, a 100% score! We’ll make sure all guides that did not attend the training in Hangzhou will get their First Aid training done later this year as well. Afterwards, we had another training session where we discussed how to be a better guide, what can go wrong on a trip, how to handle feedback and which things should not be forgotten while working as an Adventure Leader. Everyone was excited to learn ways to become better leaders to make sure our Dragons enjoy their trips as best as possible.
Luckily, when we finished the rain had finally stopped, so we took it as an opportunity to climb up Jiuyao Mountain for a spectacular view over the West Lake and surrounding mountains. It was here where we said goodbye to each other and everyone headed back to their hometowns.
It was great to see our guides from Hong Kong, Yangshuo, Chengdu, Xi’an, Hangzhou, Shanghai and Fujian all together during the training weekend! New t-shirts, flags and first-aid kits were handed out and the new contracts got signed. It was a great teambuilding weekend and it made us all confident that we are ready for the new season. The China Adventure Team (both in the office as on the ground) is ready to take on an epic season in 2019!
Want to have your own China adventure? Check out our 25-day China Loop, our 18-day Shanghai Loop, or our 12-day Panda Volunteer & travel tour. Drop us a message in the chat box below or send us an email at email@example.com to find out more!