‘Friendly Planet Travel’ Bans Abusive Elephant Encounters After PETA Appeal

Philly's Go-To Travel Agency for 35 Years Prohibits Pachyderm Attractions and Receives Box of Elephant-Shaped Vegan Chocolates in Thanks

For Immediate Release:
May 31, 2016

David Perle 202-483-7382

Philadelphia – After learning from PETA that elephants who are used for rides at camps abroad are often forcibly separated from their mothers, immobilized with tightly bound ropes, and gouged with nails or other sharp objects, Philadelphia-based Friendly Planet Travel saw the decision to remove elephant attractions in Asia and Africa from its tour itineraries as a no-brainer.

“Friendly Planet Travel joins dozens of major travel companies in agreeing that elephants are highly intelligent, social animals who should never be imprisoned at tourist traps,” says PETA Foundation Captive Animal Law Enforcement Counsel Rachel Mathews. “PETA urges kind tourists to steer clear of abusive elephant attractions and use travel agencies such as Friendly Planet that have pledged to do the same.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—notes that elephants who survive training spend the rest of their lives in servitude, lugging tourists around or performing tricks under threat of being beaten with bullhooks (weapons that resemble fireplace pokers with a metal hook on one end) or other sharp objects. Elephant attractions are also dangerous to humans, as more than a dozen tourists have been killed by elephants who’ve lashed out in Thailand in the past 15 years, and tuberculosis—a deadly disease that is transmissible from animals to humans—has been documented in elephants throughout Asia.

Friendly Planet Travel will receive a box of elephant-shaped vegan chocolates from PETA and joins Alexander+Roberts, AmaWaterways, Collette, Costco Travel, Butterfield & Robinson, Isramworld brands, Mayflower Tours, and others in agreeing not to promote exploitative captive-elephant businesses.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind