What is travel trade licensing?
All tour operators and travel agents trading in the State are required by law to be licensed and bonded to buy or sell overseas travel originating in the State to destinations outside the State or Northern Ireland unless they qualify for exemption being a retailer or organiser established in another Member State who has provided the Commission with sufficient evidence of security for the protection of consumers.
The Commission has produced a set of guidelines on the travel agents and tour operators licensing regime, which can be downloaded here.
The Commission has created a web based application process which is used for both new applicants and those license holders renewing their license. If you are seeking a Travel Agent's/Tour Operator's license for the first time, please e-mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org and we will contact you with instructions.
What is the Commission's role?
The Commission has four main roles under the broad heading of travel trade licensing:
- licensing travel agents and tour operators buying and selling overseas travel;
- administering a bonding scheme for travel agents and tour operators;
- processing claims for refunds and repatriation in the event of a licensed travel agent or tour operator going out of business; and
- investigating instances of alleged illegal trading and, when necessary, prosecuting illegal traders.
What does the Commission not do?
The Commission's role does not encompass the following:
- licensing travel arrangments for domestic travel in Ireland;
- handling consumer complaints about travel agents, tour operators, hotels, luggage or airlines; or
- handling complaints about advertising (unless this is by an alleged unlicensed trader).