The Consumer Council has established a “Code of practice” for travel agencies entitled to the “Certified Shop” emblem. Those offer outbound package tour service to consumers should follow the Code, which requires the provision of a clear and easy-to-read contract, and all prices should be listed in MOP, etc.. The Code protects consumers in many areas and ensures that “Certified Shops” provide quality service.
Code established to match up consumption trend
In 2016, about five hundred thousand Macao residents traveled using services of travel agencies, the Council therefore established a “Code of Practice” for travel agencies entitled to the “Certified Shop” emblem to follow due to this growing trend. It aims to protect consumer rights in all areas when traveling on package tours. The Code is included in the annual assessment on all “Certified Shop” as one of the assessing criterion, points will be deducted from “Certified Shops” that do not follow the Code and their entitlement to the “Certified Shop” emblem may be lost.
Prices and details of services must be listed
A list of eleven requirements are covered in the Code, including non-misleading advertisement of the travel agency, a clear and easy-to-read contract between the agency and consumers, detailed listing of all involved fees in MOP (such as fuel charges and visa fees, etc.), arrangement details of the package tour (such as flight time, flight class, hotel and room details, etc.), and listing of all other activities at consumers’ own expenses; further, the travel agencies should have measures and guidelines prepared in case any itinerary is amended or cancelled.
The Council is concerned about the privacy of consumers and it is listed in the Code that all “Certified Shops” should take measures to protect this.
Consumers should have ample right to information before transaction
The Code ensures that consumers have the right to information before transaction, and the Council believes that consumer dispute may be avoided if clear and ample information is provided before transaction is made, this will help build a harmonious relationship between “Certified Shops” and consumers.
Other travel agencies in the industry called on to support the Code
The “Code of practice” for travel agencies is the seventeenth Code established by the Council for “Certified Shops” under the mechanism and aims to encourage consumers’ confidence by improving the industry’s operation and service quality. The Councils hopes that travel agencies not belonging to the “Certified Shop” mechanism could also follow the Code to ensure consumers are better protected.
The “Code of practice” for travel agencies is available in Chinese, Portuguese, and English, leaflets are now available at the Council’s public reception areas, and its electronic format has been uploaded to the Council’s website (www.consumer.gov.mo).
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