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B&P Code Section 17550.1 "Seller of travel" means a person who sells, provides, furnishes, contracts for, arranges, or advertises that he or she can or may arrange, or has arranged, wholesale or retail air or sea transportation either separately or in conjunction with other travel services. (There are also numerous exceptions such as "air carriers and ocean carriers".)
B&P Code Section 17550.20(a) Not less than 10 days prior to doing business in this state, a seller of travel shall apply for registration with the office of the Attorney General by filing with the Consumer Law Section the information required by Section 17550.21 and a filing fee of one hundred dollars ($100) for each location from which the seller of travel conducts business.
B&P Code Section 17550.15 (b) The seller at travel shall deposit directly into a trust account 100 percent of all funds received and any refunds made by carrier or provider of travel services.
B&P Code Section 17550.38 It is the purpose of the travel Consumer Restitution Corporation to provide restitution to a person aggrieved subject to the limitation set forth in this article.
Registration with the Attorney General's office is required for Sellers of Travel offering sea or air travel only. If a business offers only land travel no registration is required.
Consumers may contact the Consumer Law Section of the Attorney General's office to confirm a registration, since it is required each year.
Tour agencies sell packaged tour to travel agencies, buying in "bulk" from suppliers such as airlines, hotels, bus companies, cruise companies, and other tour operators. Tour agencies have formed their own association, which mediate disputes.
Consumers can find out whether a travel seller is registered by writing, faxing or using the online Seller Search:
Office of the Attorney General
Seller of Travel Registration Unit
300 South Spring Street
Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 897-8846 Fax
Registration for Sellers of Travel (Sea and Air):
Information for consumers from the Office of the Attorney General:
While the Office of the Attorney General does not represent individuals, when possible it will forward a consumer’s complaint on to the company, and file actions against sellers of travel who violate the law. Consumers also should send a copy of their complaint to the District Attorney's Office where they are located and/or where the seller of travel is located. If consumers believe that their payment has been misappropriated, they may also wish to contact their local police department.
Unfortunately, many police agencies which are unfamiliar with the specialized laws in this area believe that such conduct is "civil" in nature only and does not involve any violation of criminal statutes. If a consumer runs into this response, they may contact the Seller of Travel office by calling (213) 897-8065.
California Department of Justice
Office of the Attorney General
Public Inquiry Unit
PO Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550
(800) 952-5225 (CA Callers)
(916) 322-3360 (Out of State)
(916) 323-5341 Fax
(800) 952-5548 (TDD in CA)
(916) 327-5564 (TDD Out of State)
Dial 711 or 800-735-2929
Spanish TTY/TDD 800-855-3000
Will take complaints about a tour agency (if the company involved is a member of the association) and will mediate between the parties. Otherwise, it becomes a civil matter or parties can request Better Business Bureau mediation/arbitration.
National Tour Association
546 East Main Street
Lexington, KY 40508
REFERRALS ONLY - Will help settle disputes between member businesses and consumers. The Society can verify if an agent is a member in good standing.
American Society of Travel Agents
Attn: Consumer Affairs Department
1101 King Street Ste 200
Alexandria, VA 22314