Online booking firm Airbnb is facing a bill of up to €200 million after a court ruled it was not entitled to claim booking fees from its Dutch customers.
The district court in Amsterdam said the platform was in breach of a Dutch law which forbids middlemen from taking fees from both parties in a transaction.
Airbnb was ordered to repay €470 in fees to a customer who brought the case, but the ruling applies to all bookings made by tourists based in the Netherlands, according to lawyer Nicolaas Huppes.
Huppes, who brought the case, told Het Parool that Airbnb now faced claims from anyone who had paid the 15% accommodation fee since 2015. The platform will only be allowed to retain the 3.6% fee it takes from owners.
‘This isn’t a small thing. It’s a 16-page judgment. Three judges have considered this case. I’ll be interested to see how they react,’ said Huppes.
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