Chinese Travel Agencies Punished In Shandong

China's Shandong Provincial Tourist Complaint Center has issued a notice that in the first half of 2008, there were 133 travel agencies around the province that had been punished for violating regulations, including two that had their qualifications revoked.

According to local media, for the first half of this year, Shandong's tourism quality control management departments checked a total of 640 travel agencies; 171 attractions at National A level and another 46 scenic spots; and 239 star-grade hotels and dining outlets. Of these, 133 travel agencies had been punished because they violated corresponding regulations; one unlawful liaison location was clamped down; two travel agencies had their qualification revoked; 34 scenic spots, 26 star-grade hotels and restaurants were found to have problems which need to be rectified.

The notice also said that main infractions of travel agencies included false advertisement and propaganda, exceeding their operational scope, tour contracts containing unfair terms, failure to meet the service quality standards, and forcing tourists to pay for items included in the package.

For star-grade hotels, hotels at and below the three-star level had relatively more problems in terms of hardware facilities and service quality.