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Taiwan: Era Travel shut down, around 430 people must be fully refunded
Asia | February 16, 2024 3:54:01 PM IST

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Taipei [Taiwan], February 16 (ANI/CNA): About 430 people who have purchased itineraries must be fully refunded and compensated for their trips. Today, the Tourism Administration ordered Age Travel to suspend operations for three months. Currently, there are about 430 tourists who have purchased itineraries but have not yet departed. Age Travel must refund the full amount and compensate.

The Tourism Administration of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications issued a sanction against Era Tourism this afternoon and ordered it to suspend operations for three months with immediate effect. But from today to April, there are still consumers who have signed up for group tours of Age Travel.

Tang Wenqi, head of the tourism industry group of the Tourism Department, explained that today's Phu Quoc Island tour group has been banned from going out this morning. Because Age Travel paid for air tickets and hotel fees, but did not pay the local travel agency, the group tour was changed to a self-guided tour. There are a total of 16 passengers. The tour leader signed consent forms with the passengers at the airport, and the passengers all agreed to travel freely to Phu Quoc Island.

Tang Wenqi said that the Tourism Department has conducted an inventory and found that Era Travel has currently accepted nearly 430 people in tour groups until April. Since the Tourism Department has made sanctions to suspend operations from now on, the travel agency must not only refund all the group fees but also compensate the passengers.

According to Article 12 of the "Foreign Travel Standardized Contract" (the trip cannot be carried out due to reasons attributable to the travel industry), the traveller may request the travel agency to fully refund the travel fee and compensate for liquidated damages.

Tang Wenqi said that paid tourists can also make an agreement with Age Travel and transfer the tour to other travel agencies. Since the Tourism Department only made the suspension of Age Travel today, it is currently unclear whether other travel agencies are willing to take over.

The Tourism Administration ordered Era Travel to cease operations. In addition to losing passengers, it also discovered that the company's financial operations were abnormal and it owed more than 10 million New Taiwan Dollars in external debts. Whether it has the ability to compensate paid tourists deserves close attention.

Tang Wenqi said that Times Tourism General Manager Lin Dajun said that he would deal with the (financial issue of tourism disputes). If it still cannot be solved in the end, the Travel Industry Quality Assurance Association of the Republic of China will withdraw Age Tourism from the meeting, and a deposit will be required to resume the meeting. Otherwise, the meeting will be resumed. The license will be revoked and performance insurance will be activated to protect the rights and interests of passengers.

As for whether Era Tourism can resume operations after three months, Tang Wenqi said that Era Tourism must submit a resumption plan before the expiration of the three-month suspension. The Tourism Department will review whether it can resume operations. If it cannot pass the review, the suspension will be extended. (ANI/CNA)


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