Success: Award Recognition Removed for Destinations that Allegedly Abuse Animals

Target: Stephen Kaufer, CEO of TripAdvisor

Goal: Applaud travel site for removing rewards from tourist hotspots that allegedly abuse animals for profit.

TripAdvisor, a site well-known for providing travel advice for tourists visiting popular destinations around the world, has removed its Certificate of Excellence from three tourism facilities accused of alleged animal abuse by activist group Animals Asia. With the removal of this coveted award, it is more likely that these tourism sites will feel the pressure to improve conditions for the animals, including elephants and bears, that are under their care. This encouraging news came as thousands of activists around the world expressed their outrage and concern, such as on petitions like this one on ForceChange.

The Southeast Asian tourism sites that were stripped of this award include the Bali Elephant Camp in Indonesia where elephants are forced to carry passengers, as well as True Bali Experience, which uses sun bears as props for tourist photos. The third site, Safari World, was accused of having forced orangutans to fight one another in cruel boxing matches. While the company still sells tickets for these allegedly abusive tourism sites, it is encouraging that the website is no longer actively promoting them through its Certificate of Excellence listings.

As TripAdvisor’s move will likely make these tourist destinations appear less attractive to would-be visitors, it is hopeful that changes will be made at each of these tourist sites and at others offering similar services. Sign this petition to thank TripAdvisor for taking a step in the right direction toward ending animal abuse.


Dear Mr. Kaufer,

We wish to thank you for your company’s decision to remove the Certificate of Excellence award from three Southeast Asian tourist sites that allegedly abuse animals by forcing them to pose for tourist ‘selfies’ or pitting them against each other in staged boxing matches. The elephants, bears, and orangutans that were reportedly exploited at sites like Bali Elephant Camp and Safari World are more likely to see a better future if these destinations feel the pressure to change their ways as tourists seek other places to visit.

While your site still allows people to purchase tickets to visit these destinations, we are grateful that you are no longer rewarding these tourist facilities for their allegedly inhumane treatment of animals. We are hopeful you will continue to push for more animal-friendly forms of tourism.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Cede Prudente/World Wildlife Fund

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  1. While this is a good step forward, and I am thankful that Kaufer made this decision, TripAdvisor needs to completely stop showing these places on their site. I was an avid TripAdvisor user and contributor, but when I saw that they were promoting sites that use animals for entertainment I quit using them.

  2. lynn woods says:

    I guess this is a good thing if it’s done properly but I don’t trust asian countries they are cruelest race of people and I wouldn’t believe anything they said

  3. John PASQUA says:


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