According to a report by China.org.cn, the Standing Committee of the 12th National People's Congress adopted a law on tourism in an effort to protect the rights of tourists and clear the way for the industry's sustainable development. Reportedly, the new law outlines measures to address key problems -- unfair competition, wanton price hikes, and forced goods purchases -- which have plagued the travel industry and aroused strong public discontent in China.
In their first discussion of the proposal on Tuesday, transport committee MEPs welcomed the proposal to update air passengers' rights tabled by the Commission on 13 March but insisted that it include rules on hand luggage and solutions for passengers stranded if an airline goes bankrupt. Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas paid tribute to Parliament's preparatory work in 2012. The transport committee will appoint rapporteurs for the two regulations in the coming weeks.
Effective April 1, 2013, the United Kingdom will implement a new Air Passenger Duty (APD) chargeable on passengers being transported from a U.K. airport on a qualifying aircraft. The calculation of the APD is determined by the number of chargeable passengers, their destination and their travel class.
On 12 March 2013, the European Parliament voted to support the new legislation on Alternative Dispute Resolution and Online Dispute Resolution. The vote confirms the political agreement reached in December 2012 on the two legislative proposals put forward by the European Commission in 2011. The new legislation will now soon be adopted.
On 12 February 2013, the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation published on its website the draft Federal Law on the Accession of the Russian Federation to the Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air of 28 May 1999 ("Montreal Convention").
Russia will ban smoking in some public places by June 1. Smoking will be prohibited in long-distance trains, aircraft and commuter transport, and less than 45 feet from the entrances to rail stations, metro stations and airports. In June 2014, smoking will be banned in hotels, cafes, restaurants and on commuter platforms.
In December 2011, the Government of Canada announced that the Canadian Transportation Agency would develop regulations requiring all-inclusive air price advertising. These regulations are now published on Part II of the Canada Gazette.
The Transportation Department has issued a guidance letter to tour operators and others in the public charter industry, imposing new requirements in the wake of the March collapse of Direct Air. According to the DOT, the company: