Only a handful of the world’s leading travel companies are protecting
wildlife by opposing the sale of exploitative wild animal attractions, a
new report – ‘The Real Responsible Traveller’ – has claimed.
The report from the global World Animal Protection group has singled
out five travel companies for failing to ban sales of captive wildlife
entertainment – GetYourGuide, Klook, Traveloka, Trip.com and TUI Musement.
These companies, the organisation said, were among those “who
publicly celebrate their sustainability credentials” but are often
“failing to take responsibility for the impact of their sales of captive
However, three of the 13 travel companies reviewed by WAP received a
pat on the back for their efforts to ban activities that exploit wild
and The Travel Corporation (TTC) “have proactively removed captive
wildlife entertainment”, WAP said, while Tripadvisor/Viator have removed
ticket sales for captive wild animal entertainment, “but continue to
promote exploitative wildlife tourism through images and reviews on
For the ‘The Real Responsible Traveller’ report, researchers at the
University of Surrey in the UK collected information from the public
websites of each of 13 companies to determine which of them are selling
“harmful experiences at captive wildlife venues”. The focus was on four
species categories - dolphins, elephants, primates and big cats.
World Animal Protection said tourists put their trust in wildlife
entertainment venues associated with major household travel brands.
“Travel agencies, associations, tour operators and booking platforms
promoting and selling wildlife entertainment venues lead tourists to
assume such activities are acceptable, or even beneficial for wild
animals, when in fact they are inhumane and cause lifelong harm to
wildlife,” the report warned.
World Animal Protection wants travel companies to educate and empower customers to make animal-friendly travel decisions.
“This involves ‘choice editing’, the process of controlling or
limiting the choices available to consumers to reach an end goal, in
this case, removing cruel wildlife tourism activities and promoting
wildlife-friendly,” WAP concluded.