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29 Oct, 2015

China blacklists 10 travel agencies

BEIJING, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) — China has named and shamed 10 travel agencies as the country attempts to create a sound environment for tourists, the National Tourism Administration (NTA) said Sunday.

The tourist companies, which are based in Yunnan Province, Hainan Province and Shandong Province, have been blacklisted, effective for two years, due to “irregularities.”

Five agencies’ licenses have been revoked and the remaining heavily fined, according to an NTA statement. Seven tourist guides were also blacklisted and punished.

The NTA introduced the blacklist in July. The agencies and guides were the first group on the list. The behavior of blacklisted companies and individuals will be closely watched by tourist authorities.

China is one of the world’s largest tourism markets. During the week-long National Day holiday in early October, tourists make a total of 526 million trips to attractions across the country.

However, tourist complaints have mounted in recent years about irregularities in tour company operations, most typically over mandatory shopping excursions.