The APA has developed and administers a guide certification system for paddling guides who work on swiftwater (flowing rivers), flatwater (lakes, estuaries and dams and coastal paddling (sea kayaking). The APA system is simple, well established and relatively inexpensive. Click on the relevant link for the certification schemes for:
Although the APA qualification is the industry standard and is recognised by SAMSA, the process for becoming legally qualified is a bit more complicated! Please take the time to read and understand how all of the various bodies and acronyms fit together. If anything is not clear, please contact one of the people listed below and they will explain.
The APA guide training and certification system has been around for a very long time. It’s the industry standard and is recognised by SAMSA. On its own, it does not meet the requirement of CATHSSETA (the government body that regulates the tourist industry). In terms of the law, all guides need to do an NQF (CATHSSETA) assessment in order to register with their provincial Tour Guide Registrar. The APA qualification is recognised as part of the new Generic Adventure Site Guide (GASG) qualification (or at least will be in a few weeks). This will mean that the APA qualification is fully recognised and also that Trip Leaders can do one seamless process to gain both the APA qualification and the GASG qualification. That’s the good news… The bad news is that is a costly and potentially drawn out process. There are a few ways of obtaining the qualification, including via RPL so chat to one of the NQF Assessors listed below for options.
APA Training Providers
All official APA training must be provided via a registered Training Provider
Registered Training Providers
Pending Registered Training Providers
APA qualified instructors may work with a registered Training Provider (if they themselves are not one)
River Guide Instructors
Hugh du Preez
Kate Walton (Trainee)
James Browne (Trainee)
Only an APA Assessor may run an APA assessment
River Guide Assessors
Hugh du Preez
Trip Leader Assessors
Hugh du Preez
Craig Eksteen (pending)
An NQF assessment is the legal requirement for guide to register with their provincial Registrar of Tour Guides. The qualification that applies to paddling guides is the Generic Adventure Site Guide (GASG) and for this the guide needs to combine competence in a technical discipline (e.g. paddling) with a generic assessment of the other skills required by an adventure guide. The APA qualifications will very shortly fulfil all of the requirements of the technical skills component and a single, seamless assessment will be possible. The following assessors can offer the NQF assessment and the APA assessment.
All can travel as needed.
In a nutshell – to benefit from the smoother survey process with SAMSA, guides must be APA qualified; to comply with the law regarding tour guides, your guides must have completed an NQF assessment and be registered.
- How to be a Legal Tour Guide
- APA Training Providers & Instructors
- APA Assessors and NQF Assessors
- Scheduled Training Courses and Assessments
- Instructor and Assessor Resources – password protected