TRAVEL AND TOURISM
Travel and tourism agents are at the center of the vast majority of travel purchases made by domestic and foreign travelers. One thing central to all travel is that the customers want it to be perfect. If the failure to achieve perfection is personal injury or property damage to the customer, generally focus will revert back to the travel or tourism agent who booked the travel. The law does support liability to a travel or tourism agent in certain circumstances, but it also insulates the agent in others.
It is important for professionals working in the travel and tourism industry to engage counsel who is familiar with the various legal issues and risks associated with the services that they provide. SBRS attorneys are experts in this area of the law and work hand and hand with their travel and tourism clients as a trusted advisor to assist in preventing litigation and in the event that litigation arises providing an effective and aggressive defense.
Travel and tourism agents are considered sellers of travel, along with tour operators, consolidators, wholesalers, telemarketers, travel clubs, informal travel promoters, pseudo-travel agents, and travel websites. Under the law, the travel and tourism agent is both an agent of the travel provider and the customer. Such an arrangement creates the potential for significant exposure for the travel and tourism agent. As a general rule, in the United States, a travel and tourism agent is liable to the customer for injuries caused to the traveler if the travel or tourism agent did not act with due diligence in researching the safety of the travel provider with which the agent booked the travel.
The standard of care owed to the customer depends largely on the customer’s status as a traveler, tourist and/or consumer. SBRS attorneys are well-versed in the important distinctions between these groups of customers and are experts in navigating the laws in all 50 states regarding the respective duties owed by the travel and tourist agent. Additionally, SBRS is familiar with and can assist a travel and tourism agent in navigating the requirements of foreign jurisdictions and in complying with local and foreign jurisdictions’ laws and regulations.