PTA Asked To Block Booking.com & Similar Direct Selling Websites

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has been requested to block Booking.com and other similar direct selling websites which are not registered with the legal authorities.

The concerns were raised by Habibullah Siddiqui, former vice Chairman Diplomatic Affairs Standing Committee of FPCCI and now appointed as Senior Vice Chairman Central Standing Committee of Tourism & Travel (2017) of FPCCI.

Having vast experience of the travel industry, Habibullah stated:

We are not business hungry but ‘booking.com’ & other similar websites & applications are poisoning our travel & tourism industry.

From dawn to dusk our industry personals are facing troubles caused by the firms who do not bear any stake in Pakistan & hitting our industry so bad that is what I see as a root cause for the declining of travel industry of Pakistan.

They are very big international players so if they want to get business from Pakistan they should register themselves with the revenue and taxation departments like FBR, SECP not less then a stock exchange enlisted company.

He presented his proposal to block the websites in question, which are posing a problem for Travel & Tourism Service Provider and also intervening with the fiscal policies of the Government of Pakistan to an extent.

Moreover, he requested Finance Minister and PM of Pakistan to pay attention to the matter.

Zarar leads the Sports & Auto sections at ProPakistani.


      • @Rais Zada He agrees bcoz websites like booking.com don’t give taxes. Taxes are only paid by hotels. So why this difference ? Galat ni keya hukomat ne bhaiye sahab. Booking.com like to evade giving taxes so they got this treatment.

        • It seems you haven’t done any home work before making this claim. Just go to Booking.com and go the nearest destination Dubai. Booking.com is charging the City Tax and Room Maint. charges as levied by UAE government and further pays to the hotel which pays it to government. Keep it in mind that booking dont need to pay taxes as its not the direct vendor and it just acts as intermediary. Moreover, wondering if the system works fine across the globe, what’s so special to destroy in Pakistan tourism market that we are concerned. In fact stopping such sites seems to be destroying the limited potential we may have for tourism

    • No. They don’t pay taxes on their profits. Only hotel pays tax which it will still pay if booked locally.

      • so by that logic do you travel agents pay taxes to for example malaysian or thai governments for selling trips to people there (your profit is the price you charge to customer minus the price it costs you to provide a tour), since the revenue you are making is because of the tourism that is taking place in a foreign country not in this country. So your profits are foreign source, tou phir tou apko bhi dono mulko mein tax lagna chahyay?

      • by any means it equals. you cannot charge double tax for a single entity (once paid by hotel and 2nd by service provider). the 2nd is liable for income tax only

  • I would love to understand HOW booking.com is causing a problem.. It has made Tourism easier for Local and International visitors.. It charges the hotels a fee for its services and provides competitive options to tourists. How else are international tourist supposed to book a hotel in Pakistan?

    • Take an example of UAE where booking.com has registered themselves as an offshore to do business, they don’t pay taxes for now but they pay regulation charges and heavy license fee, in case if they commit a fraud or get into legal trouble, they may face loss of license. Pakistan needed to do it at first as they can get high revenue in regulation but government is extremely incapable and chambers have different priorities.. now they have woken up

  • Hahahaha…
    Habib sb sounds funny… Why he is not willing to face the reality of Globalization. We must understand the natural trends. Sooner we accept them better we can do ahead.

    • We are unable to create or innovate excellent services. And for the sake of saving or poor services we want to ban the better ones.

      It sounds like banning internet calls because they snatch the revenue coming from GSM calls. App bhi bht funny hen habib sb ;-)

  • Either he is too greedy or too naive….he should be sent to the jungles of Amazon….people are thinking of setting colonies on Mars and he is talking about taking these websites down

  • A very mean statement by Habib ullah. They are themselves cheats and in the name of industry has been looting poor Pakistanis with costly hotel rates for many decades. The great sites like booking.com are a real welcome for Pakistani Travellers who have liberty to choose best rates while navigating away from so called Travel Industry in Pakistan. No sensible Pakistani will support such a self centered and cunning mindset idea. what about auditing Travel agent rates Vs the referred sites? This can very easily bring out truth.

  • ok so these travel agents cant face the competition so they payed off some minsters/senators and got them blocked altogether. Moreover the amazing thing is that in the comments most people are rejoicing this anti consumer move goes on to show the mindset of this country’s people. If you had just a bit of common sense you would realize that its bad for us the consumers and it also shows that you can gang up against anyone and destroy their business because they defied cliché, provided better and convenient service to consumers and at cheaper rates.

  • As long as people like Mr. Habib is going to be in such departments, Pakistan is never going to flourish. They want to keep the middle man so badly looks like their own personal interests were getting a hit.

  • Next hit will be airlines offering online booking? one way or the other are your trying to close down the e-buying or what your call it e-commerce in pakistan.

    • un ko bandddh ker rakha hai inho ne. pehle log yahan se sirf uae ki ticket buy karte they agay koi aur flight hoti thi per fia valay ab bohat rola dalte hain uae kiyun ja rahay ho kahan ja rahay ho kai kerne ja rahay ho bla bla.

  • BOOKING.COM is a rubbish site for Pakistani Accomodation any way, you always get the S#it service and dirty rooms. I was even told to present my wifes marriage certificate when I arrive at the hotel from Overseas, Who carries a stupid marriage certificate to get accommodation in hotel. Is passport not enough for the idiots. Beside they dont pay taxes and never give u receipts

    • bhai yeh do number islami jamhuria key qanoon hain. in ke apne leader ki bachian to yahodeon aur ishaieon se shade karein per dosron key pechay har waqt parhey rahein,

  • Behind the scene, Habib sab would be looking to enter into the tourism market and would be afraid of to compete with booking.com so ban is the best policy for Pakistani authorities.
    Otherwise no politician, bureaucrats is sensible and sincere with country or businesses.

    Sooner or latter you guys will listen that Habib has established the country’s largest tourism business :(

      • Its general trend of peoples over here. Rehman Malik banned the VOIP calls from foreign countries and established his own gray route to lout the Pakistanis. His per day earning reached in Millions with a single decision.

        • seems logic looking at, Pani band kr k tanker services, electricity band kr k UPS and generator services and few more examples, Oh wait , its happening in every field in Pakistan.

  • Please block iflix and tapmad also because they are not registered and have no license to operate in Pakistan.

  • the idiot who requested that, should also know that booking.com has no offices in majority of countries where it provide its services, its a online based system, booking.com do not charge fee while booking any hotels, neither they own any. this idiot should be fired.

  • fools people will use VPN to get those sites. Pakistani travel companies are mafia so why they think people will trust them and not use international ones?

  • Stupid proposal, how are they causing problem is not even mentioned. What about Pakistanis who want to book a hotel abroad through Booking.com website? You want to block it in Pakistan, that makes no sense.

  • Die if you cant compete…it’s illogical sites like booking.com are just like any other travel agent if you choose to look at them in that light. Now if I choose I can choose to deal with a local travel agent or one that is located outside of pakistan, either way no one can track or stop me. Any travel agent I use out of Pakistan I will do so on my risk and will not be liable for any tax here either.

  • we talk about FBR and taxes while our politicians go around palying with laws, ever any wondered to ban politicians too based upon their tax returns ? where the money is coming and HOW its going to dubai. Oh I see through super models ?

  • Not agreed. If they start giving revenue to you then they will not offer cheap travel like they mostly do.
    Why would nt I opt for booking. Com cuz it’s cheap.
    Next the problem is with PK authorities cuz they are not getting the cut.
    They always want cut
    Booking. Com is a well known site used by the whole world for cheap travel not like careem which pk can put their term to do business.


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