Good news! Actually this should be done long ago. People must be educated on this subject; touching wild animals are wrong. And also riding them. This is not tourism, it’s cruel how they separated from their environment and badly treated for our entertainment purposes. So change starts, big companies like TripAdvisor reaches more people should act like this.

With original release on their website, TripAdvisor states :

TripAdvisor Announces Commitment to Improve Wildlife Welfare Standards in Tourism with Industry-Leading Education Effort and Booking Policy Changes

Hundreds of Animal Attractions Where Tourists Come into Physical Contact with Captive Wild Animals or Endangered Species Will No Longer Be Bookable on TripAdvisor or Viator

TripAdvisor, today announced its commitment to launch a set of industry-leading actions, including changes to its policy on selling tickets to animal attractions, and the launch of a new education portal to help inform travelers about the standards of care for wild, captive, and endangered species in tourism and their interactions with tourists, and their impact on wildlife conservation.

TripAdvisor and its Viator brand will discontinue selling tickets for specific tourism experiences where travelers come into physical contact with captive wild animals or endangered species, including but not limited to elephant rides, petting tigers, and swim with dolphin attractions.

While some attractions will cease booking through TripAdvisor immediately, the company plans to have both the educational portal and booking policy changes fully-launched and implemented by early 2017.

TripAdvisor is also committing to the development and launch of an education portal linked to every animal attraction listing on TripAdvisor. The portal will provide links and information on animal welfare practices, helping travelers to write more informed reviews about their experience, and to be aware of opinions that exist on the conservation implications and benefits of some tourism attractions. In turn, TripAdvisor believes that better reviews will enable travelers to make more informed booking decisions and improve the standards of animal care in tourism worldwide.

TripAdvisor and its Viator brand will no longer sell tickets to, or generate booking revenue from, specific attractions where tourists come into physical contact with captive wild animals or endangered species, including but not limited to elephant rides, “swim with” programs where tourists touch or ride on dolphins, the petting of captive wild or endangered species, etc.

For attractions that can provide evidence that they are in-policy, but were impacted by today’s decision, TripAdvisor and Viator will implement an appeals process to re-establish ticket sales to certain experiences that may have been excluded through our booking policy update.

The policy includes several exemptions, including:

  • Domestic animals, e.g. horseback riding, children’s petting zoos with domestic animals like rabbits, etc.
  • Aquarium touch pools used for education purposes where tourists are under the supervision of zoo, aquarium and or wildlife officials
  • Feeding programs where tourists are under the supervision of zoo and or wildlife officials
  • Voluntourism programs for endangered species preservation at zoos, aquariums or sanctuaries where it is possible that there might be some level of physical interaction with an animal

 

Many companies, including Intrepid Travel, Responsible Travel and STA Travel, have already removed experiences involving touching wild animals such as elephant rides from their programmes.

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Read the original release on TripAdvisor.