Some mainland travel agencies are levying surcharges on elderly and young members of their Hong Kong tours, fearing they will miss out on commissions from the low-spending clients. Prospective visitors to Hong Kong have attacked the practice as discriminatory. Industry insiders on the mainland said Hong Kong agencies concerned about the groups' spending power had requested the surcharge, a claim the city's Travel Industry Council denies. Wang Fajin, a retired resident in Cangzhou, Hebei province, said he was upset when he saw an advertising leaflet stating that people aged over 60 should pay several hundred yuan extra for a package tour to Hong Kong. 'A lot of scenic spots on the mainland are offering special prices for the elderly as a gesture of respect, but it is the reverse for tours to Hong Kong. I am not that interested in going to Hong Kong now,' the 72-year-old said. A staff member from a rights centre for the elderly in Beijing said it had not received complaints about the surcharges. But she said such an arrangement did discriminate against the elderly. Travel agencies in Beijing and Cangzhou admitted that they had been charging people over the age of 60 and under 18 additional fees of up to 1,000 yuan. Beijing's BTG International Travels and Tours charges people over 60 an extra 350 yuan for tours to Hong Kong. Visitors under 18 are charged an extra 800 yuan for a four-day trip. BTG spokeswoman Dong Ping said the surcharges had been a common practice among travel agencies in Beijing. 'People only have to pay around 1,000 yuan for a package tour to Hong Kong. The agencies won't make a lot of money out of this. So they have to catch up on their revenue by introducing other surcharges. 'Most people go to Hong Kong for shopping, and they [travel agencies] think the elderly and children have less consumption power, so they charge these people more money.' Council chairman Joseph Tung Yao-chung urged the National Tourism Administration to introduce regulations to control charges by mainland agencies.