Business Intelligence on Retailing, Franchising, and Consumerism in China

Travel Agencies Face Penalty For Forcing Tourists To Shop In China

China's Legislative Affairs Office of the State Council is collecting advice from the public about the new regulations for travel agencies in China.

One of proposed rules is that if tourists are forced to go shopping outside of the itineraries stipulated in their travel contracts, the related travel agencies will be penalized from RMB100,000 to RMB500,000, and they may have their business licenses revoked.

The travel contract must include 10 important details such as departure location; places of connection; final destination; transportation arrangement and its standard; accommodation and its standard; dining arrangement and its standard; tour charges during the journey; times for shopping; time for the entire stay; and name of shopping venues.

In addition, the travel agencies are not be allowed to lure customers by pricing their products lower than total travel costs. In the past many agencies offered cheap tours in exchange for forcing travelers to buy merchandise from expensive shops that offered commissions to the travel agencies.

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