Introduction to Legislation and Ethics
Legislation and ethics is directly associated with the laws and regulations that governs the entire travel and tourism sector and it is necessarily required for businesses to comply with the guidelines being introduced by government. Further, this entire sector is indulged into practices of delivering different type of services to the target market and due to this reason it has become must to comply with the guidelines developed by government. Legislation have been framed in different areas which involves health and safety, air and transport law, ethics in travel and tourism sector etc. (Aksoy, 2005). In short, all the range of laws present is linked with the success and growth of the sector where businesses are working in favour of customers. Main focus is on protecting their right and duties for the welfare of overall society. It is the moral responsibility of every business to offer right services to the target market as per their expectations and no such activity must be carried out which can exploit customers. The present study being carried out is based on the concept of legislation and ethics in travel and tourism. Further, the report is based on different scenarios and covers large number of tasks such as use and application of transport laws, legal and regulatory framework etc.
In the entire travel and tourism sector various legal laws are being present which governs this sector. Further, it is necessarily required for the businesses to comply with large number of laws with the motive to serve customers in better manner. Large numbers of private organizations are indulged into practices of delivering services which involves Strategic Rail authority of UK which has been developed under transport act 2000 where main motive is to deliver effective path for the railway industry (Banerjee, 2007). Apart from this, main stress is on delivering high quality services to the target market in return for the public subsidies. The range of transport acts being present have been introduced to ensure that local residents are receiving right services as per their expectations and the amount paid for the same. Further, health and safety commission of UK is another independent body whose main responsibility is to provide support and assistance to the people who are linked with methods of developing health and safety regulations such as Health and safety at work act 1974. Apart from this, the present body also works to safeguard government departments which involve employees and employers who are associated with the organization.
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Moreover, Air transport association operating at international level is regarded to be trade association of world’s airline who is indulged into practices of carrying out 84% of the total available seat kilometre air traffic and at present holds 250 airlines. Further, their main motive is on safety and security of the customers along with offering them right kind of services as per their needs (Beggs and Dean, 2007). It also takes into consideration civil legislations which have been introduced by the parliament of UK so as to protect rights of individuals by implementing large number of laws. Moreover, criminal law has also been introduced where main focus is on restricting anti personnel acts which are not in favour of local public. Through applicability of all the laws restrictions are imposed on the individual for occurrence of unethical practices. Arbitration along with the conciliation body of UK is also one where they focus on enhancing working life by adopting concept of strong industrial relation practices.
On the other hand different type of structures are being present which takes into consideration magistrate court where criminal laws are undertaken along with civil matters where decisions are taken in the court itself. Main duty of court is to conduct all the activities in favor of local public which are influenced by the presence of unethical activities in travel and tourism (Bowie, 2013). Moreover, association of British travel agent has been built where main motive is to building large number of services along with products in tourism as per the actual requirement of the target market. Therefore, with the help of this it can be stated that the legal laws and regulatory framework directly influences travel and tourism industry. On the other hand, company requires to follows the regulatory frameworks related to the travel and tourism which helps visitors to feel the safe in the travelling. With the help of health and safety, organization provides the facility like medical check-up to the workers and visitors . In this context, manager also inform the danger place to the passenger which helps to fell the safe and secure during the travel.
UK government has introduced many laws and regulations which are associated with surface, sea, transport carriage of passengers etc. Further, all these regulations have been introduced with the motive to protect customers who purchase tourism services. All the range of laws present is as follows:
Sea transport: The range of tasks along with other type of events linked with sear transport is considered by the International carriage (Bredeson, 2010). Further, main duty is of the present authority is undertaken by Territorial sea act 1987 along with the carriage of goods by sea act 1992. The main responsibility is to impose liability on the carrier for damages due to which customers have been adversely influences while travelling through sea transport medium. Further, it is also possible to limit the range of commercial transactions which are not at all in favour of local public. For instance as per the case if Betty and steve planned holidays and transport facilities were rendered with the help of sea (Breen, 2013). Then in such case they suffered from damages due to this facility. So, sea transport authorities are required to provide damages to the party who has suffered loss.
Surface transport: The entire range of operations of association of British travel agents which is considered as an effective regulatory body of surface transport as per the provisions of air and road act 1979. One of the main duty is to deliver support to the party who have provided claim in relation with carriage. It safeguards interest of the passengers without pay.
Air transport: Operations of all the business enterprise under air transport are regulated by Authority of civil aviation. Further, the body is based on the provisions of air and road act 1979. Main duty is to keep a check on the air traffic and on the basis of same providing direction to the airline engineer (Cuevas, 2011). Apart from this, it is necessarily required to ensure that proper documents are presented to regulatory authorities which are linked with the regulation of aircraft.
Denied boarding regulation: It is regarded as one of the most significant regulations being introduced under transport law. Further, the denied boarding regulation applies to passengers who depart from airport within EU. Further, it is also applicable in case of passengers who depart from airport outside the EU if the airline is based in EU state. In case if the flight is being cancelled (Dwyer and Forsyth, 2006). In case if the flight is being cancelled then airline provides option of being reimbursed along with meals and telephone calls.
So, in this way these are some of the effective transport laws which have regulated the entire travel and tourism industry where companies have to comply with necessarily. Organization requires to follows the transport law which helps to reducing the unfair practices and barriers which are occurred at the work place. Manager take the responsibility for delivering the goods and services with the legal way and do not cross the limit of the material. In this context, if the visitors not able follows the rules accordingly company claim against the party.
Rules and regulations enacted under the Health and safety legislations have a direct link with the travel and tourism sector. Every person who is involved in the business of this sector has an obligation to take care of their guests as long as they are living in their premises or dealing with them. It is important to note that these regulations are equally applicable on the staff members as they are on the guests (Ferrell and Fraedrich, 2014). Specific regulation of workplace health and safety have been developed by the government for protection of the employees. As provided in the scenario Betty and Steve had to face hardships due to breach of duty of care on the part of the resort at Caribbean. The management of the resort was under an obligation to abide by all the promises which they had made with their customers. Relying on their assurances Betty and Steve planned the holiday and travelled to the Caribbean, expecting to receive all the services as defined in the description. However, the management failed to abide by their duty to serve their guests in a reasonable manner and also acted in violation of the principle of promissory estoppel. In addition, to these some of the legislations which can be made applicable in such scenarios are:
Occupier Liability Act, 1984: Under this legislation the occupier, who is in control of the property, shall be liable for any harm or injury sustained by any person who is present in the occupier’s property. From the perspective of the resort, it is the responsibility of their management to ensure the safety of their guests (Ferrell, 2014).
Health and Safety at Work Act, 1974: With the assistance and application of provisions of this legislation various components of travel and tourism industry are under an obligation to provide a hygienic as well as secured working environment to each and every employee of their respective organization, in addition to the visitors or guests. In pursuance to this statute the management of the resort shall ensure all the appropriate measures have been undertaken to provide best services and avoid all kinds of risks within the premises.
Unfair Contract Terms, 1977: Various components of this sector shall keep a distance from unfair contractual terms and not exploit the rights of the guests or visitors who are availing their services (George, 2007). Primarily, it is used in the form of exclusion clause which in essence restricts or limits the liability of the entities and the makes the tourists vulnerable. It has been observed that with the assistance of these terms the business units by relying on these terms restrict themselves from taking any liability. In addition, the entities are under an obligation to abide by the promises or commitments made by them to the tourists or the visitors. In order to evaluate the legislation of the travel and tourism under which company provides the best services to their visitors.
The concept of equality of refers to treating every person equally and not discriminating on the basis of caste, race, colour, gender, etc. and providing everyone with equal opportunities. This aspect finds application in this sector in a similar manner as it finds in any other sector. Hence, in travel and tourism sector all the components shall ensure maintaining equal treatment among all the employees as well as all the guests who are visiting their places (Hedayat, Shooshtarizadeh and Raza, 2006). It is important to note that in the event any of the agencies is found to be discriminating between any of the employees or individuals then he/she shall be liable under provisions of Equal Opportunities act, 2010. The primary rationale behind enactment of this legislation by parliament is to eradicate the menace of discrimination and unfair treatment towards individuals on baseless grounds. The said legislation is a combination of various statutes which were prevalent in the nation and has resulted into a combined code for the nation. Some of the common statutes which have been merged in code comprehensive code are:
Sex Discrimination Act, 1975: In pursuance to this provision the entities existing in the travel and tourism sector shall not discriminate between tourists on the basis of their gender and ensure provision of equal opportunities to each one of them (Holden, 2000). In addition, the recruitment strategies shall also be in accordance to the provisions of this statute. All the employees and visitors shall be provided with equal quality of services and no discrimination shall be accorded on the basis of gender.
Race Discrimination Act, 1976: The provisions of this statute strictly prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, colour, nationality and so on. Each entity of the travel and tourism sector shall ensure that a compliant treatment is being accorded to each and every person associated the organization. All the employees shall be offered equal chances at work and all the guests shall be provided with equal quality of services.
Disability Discrimination Act, 2005: The statute was enacted to empower the disabled or handicapped population of the nation and accord them with an equal level of opportunities (Jamal and Robinson, 2009). Hence, in pursuance to protect the rights of disabled people the legislation mandates each and every agency of the travel and tourism sector also to provide equal opportunities to the employees as well as visitors who are suffering from some or the other disability. The primary aim of this legislation is to strive a balance between the opportunities being made available to able and disable people, and in addition, encourage the practice of hiring employees on the basis of capabilities.
Apart from these discrimination acts, another statute of employment protection act 1978 has also been enacted by the parliament (Pattinson, 2006). The legislation in particular focuses on the protecting the rights of the employees working in any organization. Some of the specific aspects which the travel and tourism sector shall particularly concentrate on are that they should maintain equality in their strategy of remuneration payment, working timings, and so on. Company focuses on the equality under which they treat the visitors are equally. It helps customers to generates the satisfaction towards the services is provided by the firm.
The primary objective of law of contract is to render certainty in business transactions and remove ambiguity in the course of relationship. In order to form valid contract it is imperative for all the essential elements of the contract to be present in a lawful manner, namely offer, acceptance, consideration, intention to bind each other, capacity to contract and consideration. Contracts can be entered by various parties for various purposes in the travel and tourism sector (Shaman, Lubet and Alfini, 2000). It can be pertaining to supply of goods or provision of services. The former can be availed by the tourists while purchasing goods, which requires the supplier to make available goods which match the description given by the buyer, are fit for the purpose and also match the quality standards.
Similarly, the services being provided shall meet the initial description as well as match the standard quality which is suitable for the purpose. Hence, in the case of travel and tourism sector all the service providers as well as the sellers shall strictly abide by their commitments and the norms prevalent in the general business parlance. These forms of contracts are available in tourism sector also in the form of holiday packages. Hence, agencies of the sector offer various holiday packages which consists of different forms of services and offering the same to the travellers is in essence an element of a contract. Hence, if the traveller accepts the package the agency is under an obligation fulfil each and every promise made in the package pursuant to the contract they have entered into with them (Zsolnai, 2011). It is important to note that agencies in this manner enter into a contractual relationship with the travellers and hence, are bound by each and every term so agreed by both the parties.
As seen in the given scenario if Mr and Mrs Jones agree to take the summer holiday package to Portugal at the given price then the concerned agency shall be under an obligation to provide all the stipulated services at the given price. This is a case where the parties shall enter into contract in relation to package holidays. Similarly, in the case of Betty and Steve the management of the concerned resort at the Caribbean had entered into a valid contract with them, and later acted in breach of all the provisions by not providing the services in accordance to the description (Tourism to lose billions over new travel laws., 2014). Hence, in this case there is a clear violation of contract for provision of services. The resort had promised to provide sea view rooms, la carte meals, coach transfer and on the contrary had provided extremely poor facilities which were even non-compliant with the health and safety legislation of the nation.
Contracts can be of various forms and can contain different forms of terms which can be either fair or unfair in nature. Unfair terms has the capacity to render the whole contract unlawful in certain circumstances and the same can be repudiated at the instance of the aggrieved party. However, otherwise only the unfair term shall be rendered ineffective and the rest of the contract shall remain to be applicable in the same manner. For instance if any of the hotel inserts an exemption clause in the contract without informing the guest about it, then the court may not consider such a term and not allow restriction of the liability from breach of any of the terms. In addition, in this sector another form of contract which is prevalent is that of law of agency, which in essence empowers others to act on your behalf (Steinbrook, 2002).
The parties involved in this type of relationship are principal and an agent, wherein the former authorizes the latter to act in a certain manner and accomplish specific tasks. It is important to note that these relations lead to evolution of vicarious liability which infers that the negligent acts of the agent shall make the principal liable. In the case of the given scenario, if any of the lower level of management has undertaken a negligent act and not fulfilled the stipulated requirements then the owner of the resort shall be liable to pay damages to Betty and Steve under the doctrine of vicarious liability. On the other hand, organization focuses on the consumer welfare under which they reduces the unfair practices at the work place and provides the best services to them. It helps manager to easily manage their work and increases the image of the firm.
Apart from this, company requires to offer the package to the customers and they follows the legal norms. Acceptance company offer to the customers under which they takes the responsibility for accepting the offers accordingly if the consumer not accepted the offer. In this situation, organization not able to sue on the customers and do not claim the other party.
Consideration under which if the customer have the loss due to organization. In this situation, company pay the amount of the consideration to the customers.
Intention to be bound wherein company not bound the customers and provides the best service to them.
Capacity wherein organization protect the consumer and render the best service to them.
The issue of consumer protection is considered as an extremely vital issue in the arena of any business field. In a similar manner a great level of importance is accorded to this issue in the travel and tourism industry as well. It is vital to note that this sector is primarily is a service industry wherein the tour operators are entering into contracts with travellers before providing any forms of services. The terms contained in such agreements play an instrumental role while determining the relationship between these parties as well as ascertainment of their rights and obligations. One of the practice followed by the agencies is that the unfair terms are worded in such a form that the travellers are rarely able to identify how much detriment it may cause to them (Taylor, 2004). In other cases, these agencies have standard forms which the travellers are required to signed and in case the travellers have any issue with the mentioned terms then they are asked to not avail the service. Hence, in this manner the agencies forcefully make the unfair and misleading provisions applicable on the travellers and take advantage of them. Hence it can be said that the travellers in this industry have been made highly vulnerable and there is an urgent requirement for establishment of standards for evaluation as well as monitoring the system. In the given case scenario of Betty and Steve, in addition to acting in violation to the contractual obligation, the acts of resort were also non-compliant to the regulations of package travel regulations which primarily governs the packages providing a combination of transport, accommodation and other related services.
Hence, these regulations are applicable on both the provided scenarios and the Caribbean resort has acted in breach of the same. In accordance to the regulations, the services promised by the agencies and the actual services provided by them shall not show large amount of distinctions, and in the event the entities fail to abide by the commitment then they are made liable to pay compensation to the travellers or individuals who have decided to avail their services (Trevena, Irwig and Barratt, 2006). In accordance to the provisions of these regulations the service provider is required to make good all the loss the traveller has incurred due to acts of the service provider. In context of the given scenario of Betty and Steve the resort shall be liable to compensate for all the expenses which they incurred to avail their services in addition to the expenses which they had to bear for booking another room.
The Consumer Protection Act, 1987 has been enacted by the parliament to accord security to consumers from tendency of the business enterprises to exploit their rights. Hence, in accordance to this statute every agency of the travel and tourism sector shall abide by the description of the services they have provided to the travellers at the initial stage. Hence, in the case of Mr. Jones the agency who has provided the summer holiday package is under a duty in accordance to the said statute to provide the stipulated services. There are various liabilities which may be imposed in the sector which can be arising out of breach of tort of negligence. This may arise if any of the party fails to abide by the duty of care or causes nuisance to injure others in the surrounding without acting in a reasonable manner. Hence, in such in such a case the entity shall hold a primary liability for its own acts or vicarious liability for the negligent acts undertaken by its employees (Banerjee, 2007). In respect to the case of Betty and Steve the resort was under an obligation to provide la carte facility as promised and on the contrary they provided a low quality food to their guests. The resort was under an obligation to abide by the principles of food hygiene regulations and in accordance to the same provide high quality food which is fit to be consumed.
The concept of Slum Tourism has its genesis in the modern times. It can be characterized as a kind of tourism wherein the tourists visit sites which are in extremely dilapidated condition. This peculiar character of tourism has been witnessed in London, in addition to the nations of Africa, India and other developing countries (Jamal and Robinson, 2009). It has been observed that tourists preferring to pursue this kind of tourism are extremely wealthy and ready to spend high amount of money to observe the manner in which the poor population of various countries are living. This kind of tourism is not considered as ethical, however has been preferred all over the world by rich people. The popularity of this kind of tourism has increased to an extent that it is now considered as an alternative to the traditional style of tourism. People perceive it as a real experience of visiting a country by observing the conditions in which this population is residing and spending their lives. This is considered as one of the most effective sources of experiencing the true feel of the nation and get appraised with the local culture.
One of the prominent ethical dilemmas which is faced by this kind of tourism is exploitation of the right to privacy wherein the lives of poor population are highlighted in a qualified manner. The basic issues and challenges which are faced by this population is never highlighted during the tours which are conducted, thereby reflecting a wrong or a misleading image of their lives. The rights of the population residing in these areas is not protected, and hence the life residing by them is not normal. It can be inferred from these facts that slum tourism is merely a source of revenue for various agencies, and is showing an upward trend in the recent years. However, it has not showered any kind of benefits on the population which is residing in the slum areas. On an aggregate this style of tourism has not caused any positive impact on the lives or developmental needs of the concerned people, and is rather to some extent breach of their right to privacy. Moreover, it has also been an established fact that in order to attract increased number of tourists, the developmental needs of this region of the cities is not being addressed, thereby, making the situations even worse.
It is highly recommended for the tourism department of the nations to restrict themselves from indulging in practices which have deteriorated the living conditions in the specific areas. The concerned authorities undertake an effective developmental programme for improvising the conditions of these areas, by running such schemes on a regular and frequent basis. It shall be understood by them that showcasing these areas of the nation is a point of shame for a nation and hence shall not be continued. Further the local authorities can take initiatives to run an awareness programme for this population so that they can reside in better conditions, and not allow anyone to exploit their rights.
A highly effectively CSR policies have been developed and adopted by the TUI group, which has been sufficiently addressing the requirements of the goals and objectives of the company. A balance between the aspects of economy, society and environment has been successfully achieved by the corporate through the medium of these policies. The primary focus of the policies is improvise the concept of tourism into a sustainable tourism. In pursuance to the same, the management of the company has undertaken steps and implemented varied schemes to reduce their footprint from the environment. The company is set to install highly advanced technological equipments which shall reduce the carbon emission of the entity. In accordance to the environmental strategy of the TUI group, the primary focus of the strategies shall remain to be integration and operational management in order to protect the environment.
It can be stated that CSR policy of TUI Group is distinct from their competitors. The new sustainability strategy which has been introduced by the corporate, in the name of Better Holidays, targets to deliver 10 million greener holidays and invest to an extent of 10 million to enhance the impacts of tourism on the society. To realize enhanced results the enterprise has also collaborated with various stakeholders which in turn has provided them with improvised results. The company has even taken care of the financial aspect of these strategies in a highly efficient manner. The increasing burden on the environment due to the activities of tourism, and absence of adequate policies in regards to the same has caused high level of detriment to the society. The initiations of the TUI Group in this respect can be termed as highly remarkable, and is establishing a great example for other players of the market. Company focuses on the corporate social responsibility under which they highly contribute in this sector which helps to government for developing the economy.
It can be inferred from the above discussion that various number of legal and regulatory frameworks have been made applicable to the sector of travel and tourism. Laws with respect to travelling through air, sea and road have specific application on the tourists. Moreover, various components which are running their businesses in this industry are required to comply with health and Safety regulations in relation to the employees who are working under them, as well as guests who are visiting these agencies. Further, these entities shall also abide by various aspects of consumer protection legislation. Lastly, it is important to understand that due to Slum tourism, though the economy is generating high revenues, a negative influence is imposed on the lives of this population.
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