Agent fined for licence lapse

SINGAPORE, 21 April 2016: Operating a travel agency without a valid licence turned out to be costly affair for RTW Air Services Pte Ltd (RTW) which was convicted of 17 charges under Singapore’s  Travel Agents Act (Chapter 334).

RTW was fined  SGD25,500. It has since applied and obtained a travel agency licence.

Singapore Tourist Board reported, last week, that the company was charged with carrying on the business of a travel agent without a valid licence. In addition, 33 similar charges under the TA Act were taken into consideration for the purpose of sentencing.

inside no 12RTW failed to renew its travel agent licence when it lapsed in December 2009 and was found to be operating without a licence during a check on its premises, five years later, in April 2014. It has since applied for and obtained a travel agent licence, STB reported.

STB says it takes a “serious view against unlicensed travel agents and is committed to uphold the reputation of Singapore’s tourism sector, and will not hesitate to take necessary action against those who contravene the legislation.”

Under Section 6 of the TA Act, any person found guilty of carrying on the business of a travel agent without a valid travel agent licence faces a maximum fine of SGD10,000 and/or imprisonment of up to two years.

The travelling public is advised to exercise due diligence when making arrangements for their travel. For the latest list of licensed travel agents in Singapore, please visit the Travel Related Users’ System (TRUST) website, https://trust.yoursingapore.com.

Travel agents are reminded to renew their licence before it expires on 31 December of the following year upon issuance. Travel agent licences are valid up to two years.

Singapore is the only ASEAN nation that identifies travel agencies that break the law and issues alerts to warn travel consumers to exercise due diligence and use only  licensed  travel companies.