Tim McDowell

Job title Outdoor Activity Instructor

Employer PGL Travel

PGL deliver outdoor adventure activity courses, educational tours, subject-focused study courses and school ski trips, anything that delivers learning outside of the classroom.

What does an Outdoor Activity Instructor do?
We bring the excitement of outdoor adventure to life, introducing young people to a number of activities, delivering taster sessions in such activities as orienteering, archery, fencing, climbing and quadbiking.

What do you love most about your job?
Every day is unique and often unpredictable, but most of all fun. We always face and conquer new challenges, which makes it extremely enjoyable. You get an overwhelming sense of achievement when a child challenges themselves and achieves something.

It sounds like a varied role…
Working in a supportive and fun environment, you get to live and work with different people from around the country and world. You can’t beat the variety in this job role, or being active in the outdoors.

Working outdoors, is the weather a problem?
It can be, but you can’t let it affect the quality of your work. For those not so keen on the rain there is always the South of France and Spain!

“You get an overwhelming sense of achievement when a child challenges themselves and achieves something.”

And it must be seasonal…
Throughout the season you will make lots of great friends and saying goodbye at the end of the season can be tough… but there is always the next season.

Is that the biggest challenge you face?
You can also work long hours and although the work is very rewarding the days can be tiring. Maintaining enthusiasm is key!

What qualifications do you need to be an Outdoor Activities Instructor?
Your emphasis should focus on gaining suitable experience in outdoor education working or volunteering with groups of kids.

An education or sport-related degree or qualification is always a good foundation but not essential. You will find a lot of on-the-job training to develop in you outdoors career.

Is that kind of experience essential?
You need to gain experience supervising groups of kids, this could be sports teams, Guides or Scouts or other clubs and groups. You also need to gain experience working with other people as part of a team, and as much personal experience of the different outdoor activities available to try.

“We bring the excitement of outdoor adventure to life, introducing young people to a number of activities, delivering taster sessions in such activities as orienteering, archery, fencing, climbing and quadbiking.”

What can you earn?
Anyone who joins PGL as an Activity Instructor for the first time with no previous experience or qualifications is automatically enrolled on to an Apprenticeship foundation programme and receive an monthly wage of £600, free meals and subsidised accommodation if required.

Returning PGL staff working in the UK receive at least the National Minimum Wage relevant to their age, plus qualification bonuses if applicable to their job role.