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China Tourism Law

Chapter IV   Tourism operation

Article 28. Travel agencies established to attract, organize, receive tourists, and provide travel services, shall meet the following conditions to obtain permission from the tourism department of industrial and commercial registration in accordance with the law:

(A) Fixed place of business;

(B) Necessary business facilities;

(C) Registered capital of compliance;

(D) Necessary management staffs and tour guides;

(E) Other conditions stipulated by laws and administrative regulations.

Article 29. Travel agencies can operate the following businesses:

(A) Domestic tourism;

(B) Outbound tourism;

(C) Border tourism;

(D) Inbound tourism;

(E) Other tourism business.

Tourism operators preceding (B) and (C) business, shall obtain the business license by meeting specific conditions required by the State Council.

Article 30. Travel agencies may not rent, lend travel agency business license or through other forms of illegal transfer of the travel agency business license.

Article 31. Agencies shall pay deposits in accordance with the provisions to be used to cover compensation due to damages of tourists interests and cost of emergency assistance in case tourists’ personal safety is in danger.

Article 32. Ads used by travel agencies to attract tourists and organizations of tours must be honest, accurate, no false propaganda to mislead the tourists is allowed.

Article 33. Travel agencies and their employees serving tourists shall not participate or organize activities in the violation of laws, regulations or public morality.

Article 34. Travel agencies organizing tourism activities should order products and services from qualified suppliers.

Article 35. Travel agencies shall not organize a tour at unreasonably low prices to entice tourists, and charge additional fees for payable items or obtain kickbacks and other improper benefits through ways such as arranging shopping or other tourism activities.

Travel organizations, persons receiving tourists shall not specify shopping locations, tourism activities shall not be arranged on a surcharge basis. However, those under mutual agreement or the requirements of tourists which do not affect the itinerary of other travelers are not included.

In case the tourism operators break the above two regulations within article 35, within 30 days after the end of the travel, tourists have the right to ask travel agents to refund and pay in advance, or to refund the cost of the additional fees paid for the tourism activities.

Article 36. Organizing outbound tourism teams or receiving inbound tourism teams, a tour guide or leader must be arranged to accompany the whole tour process.

Article 37. Individuals who have passed the tour qualification examinations, signed labor contracts with travel agencies or registered in the relevant travel industry organizations can apply for a tour card.

Article 38. Travel agents should sign the labor contracts with the tour guides and pay labor remuneration and social insurance in line with laws.

Travel agencies that temporarily hire employment guides to provide services for tourists, shall pay full tour service fees stipulated in Chapter 60, Section 3 to tour guides.

Travel agencies arranging tour guides to provide services to team travel, shall not require the tour guides to pay any fee in advance or charge any fees to the tour guide.

Article 39. Personnel who have obtained tour card, relevant education background, language skills and tourism industry experience, and signed labor contracts with travel agencies can apply for the leader card.

Article 40. Tour guides and leaders to provide services to tourists must accept the delegation from the travel agencies and are not permitted to undertake the tour guide jobs or tour leading service without travel agency delegation.

Article 41. Tour guides and leaders engaged in business activities, shall wear a tour card, or team leader card, abide by professional ethics, respect the customs and religious beliefs of the tourists, and shall inform and explain to tourists travel norms of civilized behavior, guide the tourists to a health , civilized travel, discourage tourists from committing behaviors in violation of public morality.

The tour guides and leaders should strictly enforce the travel itinerary, and shall not alter or discontinue service activities, shall not request tourist tip, nor induce, deceive, force or coerce tourist shopping or participation in tourism activities with additional charges.

Article 42. Operating scenic spots shall meet the following conditions, listen to the views and suggestions of the tourism authorities:

(A) Necessary tourism supporting services and ancillary facilities;

(B) Necessary safety facilities and pass system security risk assessment to meet the security conditions;

(C) Necessary facilities and measures for environmental protection and ecological protection;

(D) Other requirements prescribed by laws and administrative regulations.

Article 43. For scenic spots constructed using public resources, pricing of tickets and tour scenic places, transportation and other additional chargeable activities shall be subject to government pricing or pricing under government guidance, price rise shall be under strict control. Proposed fees or prices raise should only be approved after the hearings to solicit tourists, operators and parties concerned to explore the necessity and feasibility.

For scenic spots constructed using public resources, no additional fees shall be approved which result in price increases; separate fees to recover the investment cost shall be reduced accordingly price or cancelled after the recovery of the investment cost.

Public welfare city parks, museums, memorials, etc. except the key cultural relics protection units and precious cultural relics collection units should gradually open to public and be free of charge.

Article 44. Scenic spots should publicize ticket prices information and price charged to groups in prominent place. Scenic ticket price raise notice should be released six months in advance.

Multiple-scenic ticket price shall not exceed the sum of the individual prices of tickets and tourists have the right to choose to buy ticket for any standalone scenery.

In case core scenery activity within the scenic site for any reason id suspended or ceased, notice shall be made and charges shall be reduced accordingly.

Article 45. The number of served tourists must not exceed the carrying maximum capacity approved by the scenic authorities. Scenic authorities should publicize maximum carrying capacity approved by scenic authorities and develop and implement tourist flow control scheme, and take measures such as the ticket reservation, to control the number of received tourists.

In case the number of tourists may reach the maximum carrying capacity, scenic authorities should make advance notice and at the same time report to the local People’s Government, scenic authorities and local governments should take timely measures such as flow split and diversion.

Article 46. In respect of urban and rural residents using their own homes or other conditions to operate tourism activities, the management measures shall be enacted by the provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities.

Article 47. For operation of high-altitude, high-speed, water, diving, adventure tourism projects with high-risk, relevant license should be obtained in accordance with the relevant provisions of the government.

Article 48. Travel agencies operating on the Internet shall obtain the travel agency business license, and indicate the business license information at prominent position on the homepage of its website.

The tourist information published on the website should be true and accurate.

Article 49.Service providers offering transportation, accommodation, catering, entertainment and services for tourists shall comply with the requirements of laws and regulations, and to fulfill their obligations in accordance with the contract.

Article 50. Tour operator should ensure that it provides goods and services in line with the requirements of the protection of personal and property safety.

Tourism operators who have obtained the relevant quality standard grades shall not provide facilities and services in standard lower than its obtained grades; without obtaining the level of quality standards, and tourism operators shall not use the title or the logo of the relevant quality standard.

Article 51 Tourism operators during the selling or purchasing goods or services shall not give or accept bribes.

Article 52 Tourism operators should keep the tourists’ personal information obtained during the tourism activities confidential.

Article 53 Operators engaged in passenger travel shall comply with the relevant passenger safety management systems, and shall post special logo of the road passenger travel at prominent position of the vehicles showing the details of the operators and drivers, road transport management body monitoring telephone and other matters.

Article 54 Accommodation operators or scenic site operators who have handed over part of its operating projects or sites to others engaged in accommodation, catering, shopping, sightseeing, entertainment, tourism, transportation and other operations, should bear jointly responsibility over the actual behaviors of the operator in case the business operations cause damages to the tourists.

Article 55. In case tourism operators organizing and receiving inbound and outbound tourists find out that tourists engage in illegal activities or actions in violation of the provisions of Article 16, operators shall promptly report to the public security authorities, tourism authorities or local Chinese institutions.

Article 56. According to the degree of risk of the tourism activities, the government implements system of liability insurance on operators of travel agencies, accommodation, tourist traffic and high-risk travel activities included in Article 47.

This English version of the “Tourism Law of the People’s Republic of China” was translated by editors for reference only. TEL:0086-13688000876 FAX:86-28-85510272