- Should I avoid animal attractions altogether?
While that is a personal decision, TripAdvisor believes there are many attractions that manage captive animals responsibly, and demonstrate an enormously positive impact on conservation. Many zoos and aquariums, for instance, support the objectives of species preservation within the animal and marine sciences, such as ethical wildlife conservation projects. Without the funding that tourism provides, those projects would not have the resources they need to survive. Many animal attractions also provide vital income to local people and are an alternative source of employment from other, less sustainable industries.
- Does every animal attraction listed on TripAdvisor meet the Five Freedoms criteria?
The fact that an attraction can be reviewed on TripAdvisor does not represent our endorsement of its animal welfare practices. We provide the listings as a platform for travelers to share their genuine experiences with the wider travel community – regardless of whether those experiences were positive or negative. This ensures that potential visitors can get an insight into what they might expect from an attraction, based on the experiences of others.
We believe this approach encourages greater transparency — which will, in turn, encourage more attractions to adopt best practices in animal welfare. This is preferable to the alternative, where attractions with poor welfare practices are removed from the site completely along with the negative experiences shared by their previous customers. This approach would make it harder for future customers to make an informed decision about whether or not to visit there.
- What is your policy on selling tickets to animal attractions?
We only sell tickets to attractions that adhere to our booking policy. You can read more about our policy here.
- If TripAdvisor is not selling tickets to an animal attraction, does that mean it has poor standards of animal care?
Not necessarily. While we sell tickets to thousands of experiences at attractions all over the world, some have not yet opted to sell tickets on our marketplace. As a result, the fact that an animal attractions doesn’t offer tickets on TripAdvisor should not be considered a judgment of their standards of animal care.
- If I think an attraction is failing to meet global welfare standards, who should I report it to?
We would strongly encourage you to share a review with our global traveler community, to let others know about your first-hand experience at an attraction. In addition, TripAdvisor monitors all reviews, and is working on a process to communicate critical reviews to local officials and non-governmental organizations dedicated to improving the standard of care worldwide.