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Resumption of conditional exemption for licensed travel agents to organise local group tours

Government and Public Bodies

Resumption of conditional exemption for licensed travel agents to organise local group tours

The Government announced on 27 April 2021 that the Executive Council approved the resumption of conditional exemption for licensed travel agents to organise local group tours under the group gathering restrictions as stipulated in the Prevention and Control of Disease (Prohibition on Group Gathering) Regulation (Cap. 599G) starting from 29 April 2021. However, in view of the development of the COVID-19 epidemic, the Government tightened social distancing measures with effect from 7 January 2022, including the suspension of organising local group tours.  As the epidemic gradually subsides, the Government announced phased relaxation of social distancing measures with effect from 21 April 2022, and, subject to public health and strict measures against the epidemic, to gradually resume the conditional exemption for licensed travel agents to organise local group tours. 

Licensed travel agents intending to organise local group tours under the conditional exemption must submit application forms to the TIC, undertaking to enforce anti-epidemic measures in accordance with the “Anti-epidemic Undertakings for Local Group Tours (for group tour of not more than 30 persons)” or the “Anti-epidemic Undertakings for Local Group Tours (for group tour of not more than 100 persons)” contained therein, and register with the TIC the itineraries of local group tours before promotion. 

Licensed travel agents, irrespective of whether or not they were granted the conditional exemption to organise local group tours of not more than 30 or 100 persons before 21 April 2022, must re-apply for the conditional exemption, but need not re-register itineraries (with valid departure date(s)) which were registered before 21 April 2022, yet they must organise local group tours with registered itineraries only after getting fresh approval for conditional exemption.

Members are advised to sign both undertakings in order to have greater flexibility when organising local group tours. Nevertheless, they should note that the anti-epidemic measures set out in the two undertakings are different and should not be confused.

Please click here for the list of travel agents having been granted the conditional exemption and itineraries of local group tours having been registered (latest post date: 2022-05-26).

Members may download the following documents for details of the two exemptions: 

Exemption for organising local tours of not more than 30 persons

Exemption for organising local tours of not more than 100 persons
- Guide to Application (not more than 30 persons)
- Application Form (not more than 30 persons)
- Guide to Application (not more than 100 persons)
- Application Form (not more than 100 persons)
-Itinerary Registration Form (applicable for both exemptions) (Excel format)

For enquiries, please contact the TIC:

(The page is updated on 19 April 2022)


Other related information:

Online booking for vaccination or testing

  1. Please click here for bookings for vaccinations.
                
  2. The Government has included the working staff accompanying and receiving the local group tours (e.g. tourist guides, tour escorts, staff seeing off the groups, drivers of chartered tour coaches and crew of chartered ferries) as one of the targeted groups eligible for free testing service. The working staff concerned may register the serivces in advance through the community testing centre booking system
     
  3. With effect from 24 May, working staff accompanying and receiving local group tours are required to present medical certificate or vaccination record to staff of the Community Testing Centres for free testing service. Those who are unfit to receive COVID-19 vaccination because of health reasons are required to present a relevant medical certificate; and those who have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine should present relevant vaccination record (such as by downloading their electronic vaccination records or saving the printouts of their vaccination records to their mobile phones, or bringing along the printouts or copies of their vaccination records). Those without the required documents will need to pay for the testing service.

LeaveHomeSafe QR code online registration procedure

  1. LeaveHomeSafe QR code for chartered tour coaches or chartered ferries arranged by the travel agents for the local group tours can be applied online at the “LeaveHomeSafe” website. Licence holders can apply by submitting information including contact information, supporting document (e.g. licence copy), vehicle registration mark with suitable prefix (e.g. 旅遊巴 XY1234) and address (normal parking address or berthing location for ferries).
     
  2. Licence holders making applications for a large number of chartered coaches or chartered ferries can click the “Download bulk-upload form” button to download the bulk-upload form at the “LeaveHomeSafe” website, and email the completed form together with the supporting document copies to [email protected]  with the email subject “LeaveHomeSafe - Bulk Registration for QR Codes”.
     
  3. For any enquiries on the registration for the LeaveHomeSafe QR code, please call the hotlines at 2231 5980 or 2231 5983.