Do I need a license to become an independent tour guide

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Do I need a license to become an independent tour guide

Being a wine lover and frequent visitor to wine tasting rooms in the
central coast, my wife and I have become knowledgeable and comfortable
visiting many wineries. As a result we have taken several couple
unfamiliar with the culture of wine tasting and/or the area and
provided them with an experience.

We’re thinking of starting an independent ‘tour’ business if you will.
Nothing big with a shuttle or anything like that, but a more intimate
experience for a couple who doesn’t know much of wine tasting or their
first time.

Thank you

Asked on April 6, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, no license is necessary for this. Forming an LLC (limited liability company) and conducting the business through the LLC is, however, very strongly recommended: the LLC will protect you from most potential business-related debts or liability, such as if someone is injured on a tour, or you somehow damage winery property while guiding people. With an LLC, only the business, not you personally, could be sued or be liable for most things arising out of the business.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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