How to renew your Tour Operators licence in Mauritius
September 27, 2014
My article below dates back to the year 27.09.2014. A few things have changed again and actually the steps to do your renewal are back like it used to be. The trade fee has been cancelled.
So in order to do your renewal you will need to:
Before going to the Tourism Authority
1. Renew your public liability so that it covers the whole of the next following year.
2. Print out a letter that states that there is no change in the shareholding structure of your company. It should be a letter that carries the letter head of your company and must be stamped + signed.
Once you have done point 1 & 2 you can go to the Tourism Authority for renewal. I suggest you to go 2-3 months before your licence expires. Then you will have less waiting time.
What to take along when you go to the Tourism Authority?
1. Public liability insurance policy that clearly states the name of your company and coverage period.
2. Your letter that states that there is no change in the shareholding structure of your company. It should be a letter that carries the letter head of your company and must be stamped + signed.
3. Your old tour operator licence.
4. Cheque book, credit card or cash of Rs.11 000.
For point 2 you can use this as a template:
For the DIRECTOR
1st Floor, Victoria House
Corner Barracks and St.Louis Street
Subject: Renewal of Tour Operators licence
Dear Director of the Tourism Authority,
this is to confirm that there is no change in the shareholding structure of Your Company Name Ltd. The only shareholder is still the Managing Director of the company, bearing name Your Name and ID No. Your ID No.. The secretary of the company is still Name of Secretary.
The article below can be interesting to review for learning purposes and it does also include steps and a template how to request a certified copy of your annual return from the companies division which displays who is the current share holder of the company. You will have to request that if there have been changes in your shareholding structure.
Else for additional accuracy I recommend you to also contact the Tourism Authority if you have questions and you can find a lot of infos on their websites:
→ Mauritius Tourism Authority official website
→ (Old website) The Mauritius Tourism Authority official website
As a tour operator in Mauritius, every year you need to renew your licence at the tourism authority based in Port-Louis, Mauritius. It involves several steps and procedures and you are required to go to Port-Louis a minimum of two times. I’ll outline that a bit later in my article. To get your licence renewed, you also need to pay and apply for various other documents, else you won’t get your renewal!
Those that have done business in Mauritius from abroad and living here, know that the island in its constant aim of progress; quite often changes its rules and regulations how such application procedures and renewals are handled. Never the less, you will still, every year, require to invest a bit of time, effort and transportation to get all what they require in your act together for submission. And even if you do everything precise, someone at some counter will make some comment that this or that isn’t right but however often a solution is provided or the latter is resolved.
No, it hasn’t reduced, it has increased if you count the steps you must complete to get your renewal. For those that want to know how to get your tour operators licence from scratch, please read my article:
→ Holiday home rental agencies future in Mauritius?
Now in addition to Port-Louis, I also need to go to Mapou, and in Port-Louis I have to go to 3 places and one place two times, the companies division. This is not a complaint, but only imagine if this was made more efficient and we, more than hundreds of tour operators could avoid spending all this time on transportation costs alone and time which once its gone, you don’t get it back. And am sure, many like in the beginning made mistakes, lacked a document and had to travel all the way back home again.
For instance this year it was introduced that tour operators also have to pay:
- A trade fee at your respective district council, Rs.8000 per year. (If you live in towns can someone respond in comments if you had to pay it at your respective municipality?)
- Get a public liability insurance, price depends on the kind of coverage policy you take. Expect a minimum of Rs.2500 per year.
It wasn’t required before to require to submit proof of these when you renewed your tour operators licence.
It is currently under review how the tour operators licence fee will be changed as they are balancing out the fee that you paid as trade fee and reduce this from the total price of the tour operators licence which last year cost Rs.11 000. I expect the new fee to be around Rs.3000 which is currently an assumption. I am planning to renew my licence again as from October and liase with the tourism authority what they will require for the new licence which then will be as from January 2015 as currently I only received an extension till December 2014 as they are still in process of finalising these changes and I hope that the will not require again a submission of certified copies of current directors of the company from the companies division!
Because else if you sum up all these fees it does amount to quite some charges for a small company and might also prove to be a barrier of entrance for new start ups. In another article of mine I have made list of various fees that you have to consider, please read my article:
→ What costs to expect when starting your own holiday rentals agency or tour operator services in Mauritius?
If the trade fee isn’t deducted from the tour operators licence then we will have to pay around Rs.24 450 per year on yearly fees to comply with the tour operators licence. (Renewal of companies licence, trade fee, tour operator licence fee, certification fees etc.)
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Summary of what you require to submit at the tourism authority for renewing your tour operators licence:
- Certified copy of your annual return from the companies division which displays who is the current share holder of the company. I will list below a template that you can use. Price I paid this year was Rs.400. You can get this usually within 1 week.
- Proof of having a public liability insurance. Your insurance company will submit you a special document which you submit to the tourism authority which displays your coverage. Now, make sure that your public liability insurance beginning and end date fall into the same period as your tour operators licence validity. Such as 01.January 2015 till 31.December 2015.
This is a template you can use or adapt as you require when requesting your annual return and list of current share holders of your company for the tourism authority at the companies division. Also bear in mind, whatever you need from the companies division, they will always require a letter, you cannot just simply go in person and request and pay. I have had situations where I had to write and rewrite letters right there on the spot.
⇪ You like my Mauritius photos? See them all here. (They have been viewed more than 1.3 million times!)
Template for the Companies Division
Registrar of Companies
Company: #Your Company Name Limited#
Subject: Application for certified copies
Dear Director of the Registrar of Companies,
for the company: “#Your Compane Name Limited#” bearing company number: “#Your Company Number#” and Business Registration Number: “#Your Company Number#” we would like to request the following as certified copies:
1. A certified copy of the first page of the annual return #Year# (which is a no change return) or year that applies since there has been no change of director or shareholders.
2. A certified copy of page four and page five which displays the actual list of current directors and shareholders.
We require these certified pages for the Tourism Authority in order to renew our Tour Operators licence. Please provide us this document as soon as possible.
#Signature, Date, Place#
#Your Name in print#
Steps to take into account when doing your applications
I would suggest to you to start your renewal procedures 3 months before expiry of your tour operators licence.
First you need to go to Port-Louis and apply for certified copies at the companies division which you will then need to fetch again a week later. On that same day I try to also renew the public liability licence. When I go fetch the documents, on that same day I also go to the tourism authority to renew the licence. Payment can be done by cash, cheque or credit card. Credit card is new at the tourism authority.
As this year I only get an extension I will have to renew again meaning the amount of transportation required has doubled plus also the time invested. They haven’t been able to tell me yet if I need to re submit the annual return and list of directors and share holders. I hope not! Because this will increase even further more transport and time invested.
For those in the same boat that require to do all these same steps, don’t forget to already extend your public liability licence to December 2015 or January 2016! If your public liability insurance doesn’t cover the same period of your TO licence validity you will not get it!
Please share with me your experience or details you deem missing or requiring updating in this article to make it a helpful resource.
→ Municipal and District Councils in Mauritius
→ Tourism Authority of Mauritius
→ Ministry of Tourism and Leisure
→ Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority
→ Companies Division
→ Tourism Authority Act (PDF)
→ Association of Hoteliers and Restaurants In Mauritius
As time flies by, my article will soon at some stage be outdated. I do not on a regularly basis, update such articles of mine. I publish them for the fun of blogging and interacting with users.
Please make sure to double check with the tourism authority, companies division and any other authorities that you must relate to, to get the most up to date information.