Brussels warns Airbnb on consumer rights

Tech Sector Updates

Brussels has warned Airbnb it has until the end of August to change its terms and conditions protecting users or face the possibility of legal action in the European Union.

The European Commission said on Monday that the hosting platform should align with EU consumer rights laws by ensuring that prices displayed on the platform include all charges, and should empower consumers to prosecute hosts who break the rules.

“Consumers should easily understand why and how much they have to pay for services and have a level playing field – for example in the event of cancellation of accommodation by the owner,” said Vera Jourova, EU Commissioner for Justice and Human Rights. consumers.

Airbnb has until the end of August to propose solutions to the complaints of the commission. If this fails, consumer protection authorities in the 28 EU member states will be able to take legal action against the “sharing economy” platform under their national laws.

In a statement, Airbnb said, “We take this issue seriously and are committed to being as transparent as possible to our community.”

“Customers are advised of all charges, including service charges and taxes, before confirming their decision to reserve a listing, and we will work with authorities to clarify the issues raised. ”

The committee also wants Airbnb to change its terms and conditions so that the company does not “mislead” consumers by going to courts in a different Member State than the one in which they reside. EU authorities also want to prevent Airbnb from unilaterally changing a customer’s terms and conditions without proper warning or from suspending contracts without proper explanation.

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