How Tui Group Continue To Fail Marine Wildlife

World Animal Protection and Kiwano Tourism

How Tui Group Continue To Fail Marine Wildlife

World Animal Protection and Kiwano Tourism

A household travel brand with a fun family image is continuing to profit from wildlife cruelty and captivity. Selling no less than 25 venues, profiting from 400 captive dolphins, TUI risk falling behind and out of favour with travel agents.

Written by Rebecca Woolford

Rather than calling out, a community of travel professionals are ‘calling in’ TUI group to join the multitude of travel brands which have already taken action to end dolphin and whale exploitation. This year EasyJet announced their ban of marine parks and Jet2holidays became the latest tour operator to have a change of heart.

The largest home working agencies including Designer Travel, Travel Counsellors, Not Just Travel, Hays Travel, Perfect Getaways, The Holiday Franchise Company and many more independent travel businesses have come together here to ask TUI to stop profiting from dolphin cruelty.

Wild dolphins vs. captive.

Change is Coming…

With TUI Group pivoting their sales strategy towards empowering more travel agents to sell more of their products, it’s somewhat ironic that over 300+ travel agencies have already signed this letter.

Once the community of travel and trade professionals have reached the 500 signatures here, World Animal Protection alongside some of the Kiwano community will hand in the letter to the TUI head office.

This month RSPCA joined other wildlife organisations such as Peta, World Animal Protection, Born Free Foundation, World Cetacean Alliance, Whale and Dolphin Conservation in writing to Tui’s managing director Andrew Flintham asking him to listen and take action. Morrissey also wrote to them.

“Over 320 travel agencies have already signed the open letter to TUI UK’s Managing Director Andrew Flintham asking for TUI Group to stop profiting from captive dolphin entertainment – we expect to reach 500 signatures by this summer. Following on from easyJet holidays’ announcement of their strong animal welfare policy and Jet2holidays choosing to stop selling tickets to captive dolphin venues in the last few months, TUI Group are seriously falling behind and out of favour in the travel market.”

Katheryn Wise, World Animal Protection

“The UK doesn’t have these marine wildlife prisons any more, not because there was a legal ban but because the country made it so difficult for the venues to comply with welfare standards that it became impossible. Why is it not seen as ‘ok’ in the UK but when we travel abroad to Mexico or Spain it’s seen as ‘acceptable’?

Over the years I’ve come to realise that most travel agents are still lacking the confidence to say no to clients who request a dolphin swimming experience, explain the reasons and most importantly provide a much better alternative. With knowledge and the right support this can be turned around. I’ve worked with many travel agents who now feel empowered and much happier in their role and business. They are building more trust and loyalty with their clients because they align their businesses with good ethics and practices.

The second thing I know to be true is that people often go to these shows because they love animals and they have no idea that by visiting these venues, they are funding the cruelty. They are being lied to by the marketing brands, the venues and the tour operators that are profiting from captive dolphins and whales. It’s up to each and everyone in the trade and industry (this includes media platforms and journalists) to share the truth and create positive change.”

Rebecca Woolford, Co-Founder of Kiwano Tourism

Skip to 8.40 mins in the video below to hear the 5 justifications you’ll hear most for these marine parks.

5 common justifications for marine parks and why they are BS!!!

1 – “Visiting a dolphin show is educational” – Skip to 9.40 mins above to find out why this is BS

2 – “Zoos and marine parks invest in conservation”- Skip to 12.48 mins above to find out why this is BS

3 – “The dolphins are smiling and enjoying it” – Skip to 16.15 mins above to find out why this is BS

4 – “Going to a park is the best way to see them” – Skip to 18.51 mins above to find out why this is BS

5- “The animal’s welfare is the parks top priority” – Skip to 21.36 mins above to find out why this is BS

5 Need To Knows About Marine Parks

1) TUI Group profits MOST by selling park tickets to an astonishing 25 dolphin entertainment venues. These venues hold captive 400 dolphins. Despite over 100,000 signatures calling for change, 300+ travel agent signatures and various TUI staff sharing their embarrassment for the stance of the company, TUI continues to ignore both the voices of the travel industry and the wildlife suffering on a day-to-day.

2) The world has long been moving away from keeping intelligent, sensitive cetaceans in captivity. Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, and Croatia have all banned the practice of keeping cetaceans in captivity. Other countries, including Brazil, Luxembourg, Nicaragua, and Norway, have highly restrictive standards that make it nearly impossible. The last dolphinarium in the U.K. closed more than 30 years ago.

3) The majority of visitors are unaware that their money is paying towards animal cruelty. Tourists who go to marine parks like Sea world, Miami SeaAquarium, Loro Parque go as part of their packaged holidays. British Airways Holidays, Virgin Holidays, Tripadvisor, Expedia, AirBnB, and Booking.com have all cut ties with marine parks. Some of the most outspoken critics of marine parks are ex dolphin trainers.

4) Spain is Europe’s largest dolphin prison. Many of the parks continue to allow visitors to swim with the marine wildlife, putting on entertainment shows where dolphins are forced to perform circus-like tricks. Loro Parque holds 8 dolphins and 4 orcas in a concrete chlorine tank which is smaller in size than their car park. Camouflaging entertainment as conservation, Loro Parque presents the performing dolphins as ambassadors for their wild co-species, even though they have lost every connection with the sea.

5) Many large cruise companies are actively supporting an industry that exploits dolphins. Princess cruises is an example of one which is profiting greatly from it. Their swim-with-dolphins (SWD) programs place extraordinary amounts of stress on these intelligent animals, who may be forced to interact with over 50 tourists a day. 

Join 327 travel professionals who are calling on TUI group to take action here. If you’ve already signed it, great! Don’t stop there, by sharing it with your network and colleagues we can bring about change faster. If you’d like to be a part of a community of change makers then reach out to on rebecca@kiwanotourism.com

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