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DOT Fines Tour Operator for Violating DOT Price Advertising Rules. 

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has assessed a $35,000 civil penalty against tour operator Tour Beyond, Inc., doing business as China Spree Travel, for violating the Department’s price advertising rules for air tours.  An investigation by the Department’s Aviation Enforcement Office found that China Spree charged consumers a $200 fee to pay by credit card, but the company’s web site failed to list this fee prominently and adjacent to the stated fare.  The company’s actions violated the rule requiring that the advertised price for air tours be the full price to be paid by the consumer. China Spree also advertised fares that did not include fuel and service surcharges for air transportation, and did not properly list government taxes and fees that were part of the overall price to be paid.  This also violated the Department’s full price advertising rule.  The consent order against China Spree is available on the Internet at www.regulations.gov, docket DOT-OST-2011-0003.

Friday, February 11, 2011