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Irish consumers will no longer be disadvantaged when shopping online – Hayes

Ending unjustified geo blocking means cheaper products and services such as hotels and car rental

Fine Gael MEP Brian Hayes has today (Saturday) said that Irish consumers will no longer be discriminated against when buying products from another EU Member State online. The Dublin MEP was speaking after agreement was reached this week between the European Parliament, Council and Commission that will end the practice of geo-blocking.

“For far too long European citizens have been disadvantaged when buying goods or services from an online store based in another EU Member State. New rules agreed today mean that consumers will no longer be deprived of purchasing goods or services based on their nationality, residence or IP address.”

“The new agreement means that there will no longer be barriers to access websites of companies. In addition, a consumer cannot be redirected to another country specific website without consent. This means Irish consumers can now purchase directly from a store based in another Member State such as Germany rather than being redirected to the Irish or UK store where the same product may be more expensive.”

“Consumers can also benefit from better deals for hotel bookings or car rentals on websites based in another Member State, which may have previously re-directed them to their local version.”

“The new rules makes perfect sense. We have a European Single Market – consumers should not be disadvantaged when purchasing from another Member State. The new agreement is an important first step in fighting geo-blocking. We now need to look at ending the practice in other sectors such as audio-visual,” concluded MEP Hayes.


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