What you need to know when booking travel online

With so much information at our fingertips, booking travel online can be a major convenience. Within moments, you can book airline tickets, reserve hotels and line up activities. But it’s important to know who you’re booking with. Not all websites offer the same consumer protection.

All booking websites and in-person travel agencies based in Ontario are regulated by the Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) and have to follow consumer protection laws. This includes everything from travel agencies in a local plaza or main street, to major online booking platforms.

If you book with a registered company, you’ll be given important information to help you make informed decisions when planning your trip. This includes:

  • All-in pricing, meaning no hidden charges or surprises.
  • Information about any fees or penalties in case you end up needing to change or cancel your booking.
  • Disclosure of unique conditions that may affect your decision to book. For example, if you are booking a resort with a vast children’s waterpark, you would need to be informed if the waterpark is going to be closed for renovations during your stay.
  • Necessary travel documentation for each person, based on the nationality of the passport they hold and the requirements for the destination.
  • Availability of travel insurance, including out-of-province medical insurance and trip cancellation insurance.

Booking websites located outside of Ontario aren’t held to the same standard. While it’s easy to quickly click through to the purchase page, it’s worth taking a minute to ensure you know who you’re really buying from.

To verify if you are booking with a registered, Ontario-based booking website, you can check the agency search feature at tico.ca

Related Content

Valentine’s Day 2024: Meaningful ways to show you care

Valentine’s Day 2024: Meaningful ways to show you care

Love is in the air this month as we celebrate the special people who mean the most to us, whether it’s family, friends or partners. Here are four ways to embrace the spirit of the month and show your circle that you care. Don’t be the fool for love While being in love...

read more
Tips for planning the perfect spring break holiday

Tips for planning the perfect spring break holiday

After the holidays and New Year’s celebrations have passed, for many of us the next big thing to look forward to is a spring break holiday. If that’s in the cards for you this year, here are some things to keep in mind so you have the vacation of your dreams. Pre-trip...

read more