The first Greeter initiative was started in New York in 1992 and was called Big Apple Greeters. Its founder was Lynn Brooks. The idea was that the project, supported by Manhattan borough president Ruth Messinger, would change things for the best with the city and unveil the myth of New York being a “dangerous, expensive and overwhelming” place by letting tourists see it through the eyes of the locals. This program soon spread to a large number of tourist destinations around the globe.
We do not waste time giving long and boring descriptions of places as if reading aloud a thick dryly written guidebook. We do not stuff the tourist’s memory with a huge lot dates and figures.
We are not guides, but hospitable hosts who can’t wait to show our guest to everything we love about Saint Petersburg and all that we are proud of in it. With us the traveler does not walk along the beaten path paved by tour operators, but mingles with the locals and takes part in their everyday life. He is no longer an observer who watches the city from behind a tourist bus window.
Greeters are new friends in your trip who you can not only chat with but also ask where to buy stamps in Saint Petersburg to send postcards home, at what time the metro closes and what is the fastest way to get here or there; why does PECTOPAH actually does not read “pectopah” but in fact is the Russian for “restaurant” written in Cyrillic; why after spotting too many people dressed in white and blue you’d better not go in the direction of “Sportivnaya” metro station and a lot more!