By early 2017, TripAdvisor and its Viator brand will have discontinued ticket sales for specific animal tourism experiences.
The ban includes, but is not limited to, elephant rides, patting tigers, and swimming with dolphin attractions, and those attractions involving physical contact with captive wild animals or endangered species.
Some attractions will cease booking through TripAdvisor immediately, while the company plans to have both the educational portal and booking policy changes fully launched and implemented by early in the new year.
Stephen Kaufer, president and CEO, TripAdvisor, said the move is designed as a means for TripAdvisor to do its part to help improve the health and safety standards of animals, especially in markets with limited regulatory protections.
“At the same time, we want to celebrate those destinations and attractions that are leaders in caring for animals and those in the tourism industry who help further the cause of animal welfare, conservation and the preservation of endangered species. We want to thank the dozens of trade groups, academics and non-governmental organizations who helped us design our path forward as a company.”