DOT urges public to deal with accredited agencies-A A +A
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
THE Department of Tourism (DOT) in Davao Region urged the public to only seek the services of accredited travel agencies to avoid encountering problems in making a booking.
DOT Davao Regional Director Arturo Boncato Jr. made the call after a group of parents in Davao City filed a complaint before the Department of Education (DepEd) Davao Region against a Davao-based travel agency for allegedly issuing fake plane tickets.
Boncato said with laws, which regulate tourism-related establishments across the region, the tourism sector in the region is intensifying its campaign toward standardization of these establishments.
Boncato was referring to the Tourism Act of 2009 mandating all hotels, resorts, restaurants, tourist transport, tour guides, among others, to be accredited with the DOT and other government agencies that have direct control over the industry.
"In preparation for its roll out, we have been campaigning this for accreditation," Boncato told Sun.Star Davao in a test message.
He said transacting only to accredited travel agencies will give assurance to the tourists and travelling public that they are transacting with a legitimate and recognize travel companies.
"For the interest of consumers, we encourage them to go to accredited agents as they are monitored and linked with the DOT and its prescribed standards," Boncato said.
The issue stemmed from a letter-complaint submitted by Maria Gemina Valderrama-Galang to Deped 11 legal officer Atty. Renato Bartolo Jr. enumerating their displeasure against the Hager Travel and Tours for issuing fake tickets to the parents.
In the complaint, the parents claimed that they bought a total of 10 round-trip tickets from Davao to Puerto Princesa in Palawan October of last year for their February 26-March 2 travel.
Valderama-Galang's concern is now pending before Deped's legal department.
However, Marlon Hager, the owner of the Hager Travel and Tours, where the complainant bought the tickets earlier said their ticketing officer, Resley Agua, who handled all their booking transactions ran away and brought their customers’ money with her.
At present, the management of Hager is now gathering information and is mulling to take legal actions against her staff who took away their clients' money.
But the complainants said that Hager's clients must not be affected by the company's internal problems.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 06, 2013.