Business

Surrey travel agency has licence pulled

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A Surrey travel agency has been forced to close its doors – at least temporarily – after its licence was cancelled by Consumer Protection BC (CPBC).

It's alleged that Globe-Time Travel Ltd., located on 128 Street near 95 Avenue, did not comply with B.C.'s travel regulations.

Tatiana Chabeaux-Smith, manager of corporate communications at CPBC, said the licence cancellation came after an inspection that was generated by a complaint.

"Our director was of the opinion that the business might not meet the necessary criteria to maintain a travel licence. For example, they may not have sufficient working capital," said Chabeaux-Smith.

"When a travel business doesn't have enough working capital, then we think that puts the consumer at risk because of the exchange of money. They might not have enough money to protect those consumers."

Globe-Time has requested an opportunity to be heard on the licensing matter, but the CPBC could not say how quickly that process would take place.

Customers who have booked trips with Globe-Time and haven't yet travelled are encouraged to contact airlines, hotels and tour operators to confirm reservations.

If it's found reservations aren't confirmed, Consumer Protection BC recommends:

• Talking to your airline, hotel and tour operators to determine if there are options available for you to rebook your travel arrangements;

• Contacting a B.C. licensed travel agent to determine if they can assist with rebooking alternative travel. To find a licensed travel agent, visit www.travelrightsbc.ca.

In the event that the original travel services booked were not provided and you are seeking a refund, here are some steps you can take:

• If you purchased travel services with a credit card, call or write to the credit card company to determine if the charges can be reversed.

• If you purchased separate travel insurance, call the insurance provider to see if it will cover the costs of the undelivered services.

• If these steps have been unsuccessful, you may be eligible to make a claim with BC's Travel Assurance Fund (TAF).

The TAF is a fund of last resort and provides possible compensation for consumers who didn't receive the contracted travel services they purchased through a licensed travel agent. Claims may be made to the fund for the original cost of travel services paid for and not provided. For more details about the fund and to find a licensed travel agent or wholesaler, visit www.travelrightsbc.ca.

 

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