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TripAdvisor Will No Longer Sell Tickets to SeaWorld, Other Sites That Breed Whales and Dolphins

Orcas are seen at SeaWorld San Diego in this undated photo. (Credit: Mike Aguilera/SeaWorld San Diego)

Orcas are seen at SeaWorld San Diego in this undated photo. (Credit: Mike Aguilera/SeaWorld San Diego)

Online travel giant TripAdvisor is making a big change to its policy on animal attractions. The company announced it will no longer sell tickets to or make money from attractions that breed or import captive whales and dolphins.

“Our aim is not only to prevent future generations of whales and dolphins from being raised in captivity, but also to encourage the industry to move towards alternative models, like seaside sanctuaries, that will better provide for the needs of the current captive population,” TripAdvisor’ President of Experiences and Rentals Dermot Halpin said in a statement.

According to TripAdvisor, the move is the latest refinement to the company’s animal welfare policy, which was launched in 2016. The policy outlines specific experiences and events TripAdvisor will not sell tickets to, including events in which animals are “forced to perform demeaning tricks or other unnatural behaviors” or some experiences “where tourists come into physical contact with captive wild animals.” TripAdvisor mentions tiger petting and elephant riding as two specific experiences barred under these policies.

In the case of their new cetacean policy (cetaceans are an order of aquatic mammals including whales and dolphins), TripAdvisor confirmed large attractions like SeaWorld parks will be affected.

CNN has reached out to TripAdvisor by phone for additional comment.

TripAdvisor has specified that although they will not sell tickets to such attractions, they are not removing them from the TripAdvisor site, where users share photos and reviews to inform fellow travelers.

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