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August 6, 2013

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Ctrip tour operator had no bus license

A LOCAL bus company was yesterday fined for operating a coach without a license on a tour organized by leading online travel company Ctrip.

State-owned Shanghai Donghu Automobile Service Company was told to pay 3,000 yuan (US$1,269) by traffic law enforcement authorities.

Ctrip has apologized and agreed to compensate tourists.

On Sunday, the bus with 30 passengers aboard was stopped by traffic police at a toll station of the Shanghai-Jiaxing-Huzhou Expressway. 

It was traveling back to the city after a two-day trip to Mogan Mountain in Zhejiang Province.

Passengers were forced to wait two hours until an alternative bus could be found.

“I am astonished to learn from traffic police that the bus had no license, and was scared when thinking about our trip,” said passenger Wang Mengyuan.

According to Wang, Ctrip has agreed to compensate 140 yuan (US$22.8) and return 140 yuan to each person for the bus fare, but passengers want more.

“The trip was risky, and Ctrip ignored our safety,” said Wang.

Donghu said that it is willing to pay compensation.

“It’s our fault,” said a Donghu manager surnamed Liu. He said Ctrip is a long-time client.

The company is introducing 30 new buses whose operational licenses are still undergoing approval, said the manager.

“When Ctrip asked for a bus and we just sent a new one without much thought,” Liu said.

The new licenses will be ready by three to five days.

Liu stressed that the company, which includes international schools in Shanghai among its clients, is licensed.



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