Application for Ex Gratia Payment from TICF

Protection under the TICF and the relevant legal provisions

i. Scope of protection under the TICF
ii. Examples not covered by protection under the TICF
iii. The requirement of travel agents to contribute to the TICF in respect of outbound fare

i. Scope of protection under the TICF

The Travel Industry Compensation Fund (TICF) provides protection to outbound travellers who may claim:

(a) up to 90% of the outbound fare lost if a licensed travel agent patronized defaults; and
(b) up to a maximum amount of $300,000 as financial relief in case of death or injury caused by an accident outside Hong Kong in an activity of an outbound package tour provided or organized by a licensed travel agent under the Package Tour Accident Contingency Fund Scheme, subject to the maximum limit for each item:

Medical expenses incurred in the place of accident outside Hong Kong up to HK$100,000
Expenses incurred in the place of accident outside Hong Kong for funeral or return of dead body/ashes to Hong Kong up to HK$100,000
Expenses incurred by relatives of an outbound traveller for making compassionate visit to the place of accident up to HK$100,000
(HK$25,000 per relative)

Under the Travel Agents Ordinance (TAO) (Cap. 218), an outbound traveller means a person who has paid to a travel agent at an inclusive price for an outbound travel service comprising any two or all of the following:

  (a) carriage (by land, sea or air transport) from Hong Kong to places outside Hong Kong;
  (b) accommodation outside Hong Kong;
  (c) arrangements for an activity outside Hong Kong.

Please visit the Department of Justice's Bilingual Laws Information System on Internet homepage for details of the relevant provisions, including section 32A of the TAO and the Travel Industry Compensation Fund (Amount of Ex gratia Payments and Financial Penalty) Rules (Cap. 218, sub. leg. E).

ii. Examples not covered by protection under the TICF

As regards the protection against loss of outbound fare, the following are examples not covered by the TICF:

  • Purchase of air or bus tickets alone; and
  • Purchase of hotel accommodation alone.

As regards the Package Tour Accident Contingency Fund Scheme, the Scheme does not cover:

  • Medical and hospitalization expenses arising from illness;
  • Death or injury sustained whilst engaged in an activity which is not provided or organized by the travel agent concerned; and
  • Accidents occurred in individual stay-behind activities.

iii. The requirement of travel agents to contribute to the TICF in respect of outbound fare

Travel agents are required under sections 32H and 32I of the Travel Agents Ordinance to pay in the form of levies an amount equivalent to 0.15% of each outbound fare received respectively to the TICF and the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong (i.e. a total of 0.3%).

(Note: The TICF levy has been suspended with effect from 3 July 2009. Starting from the same date, travel agents are only required to contribute the 0.15% Council levy.)