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New Animal Attractions Policy One of Many CSR Steps for TripAdvisor

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Today’s announcement by TripAdvisor that it will change its policy on selling tickets to animal attractions is just one in a series of steps the world’s largest travel site has made to positively impact travel industry purchasing practices. In its announcement, TripAdvisor said it and its Viator brand will discontinue selling tickets for specific tourism experiences where travelers come into physical contact with captive wild animals or endangered species, including but not limited to elephant rides, petting tigers, and swim with dolphin attractions. While some attractions will cease booking through TripAdvisor immediately, the company plans to have policy changes fully launched and implemented by early 2017. In conjunction with its animal attractions announcement, TripAdvisor also revealed the launch of a new education portal to help inform travelers about the standards of care for wild, captive, and endangered species in tourism and their interactions with tourists, and their impact on wildlife conservation.

The education portal will be linked to every animal attraction listing on TripAdvisor. The portal will provide links and information on animal welfare practices, helping travelers to write more informed reviews about their experience, and to be aware of opinions that exist on the conservation implications and benefits of some tourism attractions. In turn, TripAdvisor believes that better reviews will enable travelers to make more informed booking decisions and improve the standards of animal care in tourism worldwide. The content on TripAdvisor’s education portal will provide numerous points of view from experts in the fields of sustainable tourism, animal welfare, wildlife conservation and the zoological and marine sciences.

TripAdvisor’s announcement today follows its September announcement that it will donate at least $5 million from the TripAdvisor Charitable Foundation over the next three years to aid the humanitarian refugee crisis.

It was three and one-half years ago that TripAdvisor launched its GreenLeaders program, helping its community of more than 200 million travelers plan greener trips by highlighting accommodations engaging in environmentally-friendly practices.

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