ILOILO CITY — The Department of Tourism (DOT) here on Friday reiterated its warning for the public to transact only with DOT-accredited establishments in Western Visayas.
“This office reminds the public to only deal with establishments bearing DOT accreditation ID, stickers and certificate,” said lawyer Helen Catalbas, DOT regional director in Western Visayas.
She said that her office has been receiving reports of “tourism entities participating in activities including solicitation of any sort” using the name of DOT.
In earlier interview, she said DOT has gone massive in its information campaign to protect consumers.
“It is much less expensive when we preempt complaints rather than answer consumer complaints,” she added.
She added that they have made full use of the mass media, social media, word of mouth, and strengthened relationship with their accredited agencies.
“When there is signage, plaque, sticker of the tourism office — that is a promise of quality service, promise of protection for the consumers. When we issue accreditation to those qualified, we also have the power to revoke that seal of assurance of consumer protection,” Catalbas said.
Complaints against non-DOT accredited establishments are referred to the local government unit that issued the permit to operate.
Meanwhile, due process is given regarding any complaint against DOT-accredited establishments. If no settlement is arrived at, then the parties concerned are advised to go to court, she added.