• France's news in English

Disneyland Paris rejects overcharging claims

The Local/AFP · 29 Jul 2015, 15:32

Published: 29 Jul 2015 08:57 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 Jul 2015 15:32 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit
"Our prices are strictly the same everywhere in the European Union, apart from exchange rates," Disneyland Paris vice president Julien Kauffmann told AFP, adding the only other variations concern special offers.
"The only difference at any given time is linked to the fact we make special offers that are not necessarily the same, and not available at the
same time in all European countries," Kauffmann said.
"Needs are not fundamentally the same in all countries. In Italy or Spain, we'll more likely offer packages including meals or free transport, while in France -- where people often arrive in their own cars -- we will offer the same discount applicable to a hotel room," he said.
Kauffmann said the timing of the offers varied by country because "an English (visitor) will reserve a holiday six months to a year in advance,
while with the French it's four to six months ahead."
- 'Scrutinising complaints' -
The response came after the European Commission announced Tuesday it had opened an investigation into Disneyland Paris's pricing practices after it received complaints that the amusement park east of Paris was altering prices in different countries -- which would be in violation of EU rules.
"The European Commission and European Consumer Centres frequently receive consumer complaints involving unjustified differences in treatment on the grounds of nationality or residence," a European Commission spokeswoman said in a statement to AFP.
"We are currently scrutinising a number of complaints, including several against Disneyland Paris," she said.
The announcement of the probe came amid reports that Europe's biggest amusement park was being investigated for overcharging British and German
The Financial Times reported that Disney charged French visitors €1,346 ($1,487) for a premium package, while Britons were charged €1,870 and Germans a whopping €2,447.
Customers from France generate 50 percent of the park's income, followed by visitors from Britain, Spain and Italy.
Kauffmann noted, however, that Disneyland Paris's website does not engage in geo-blocking, meaning visitors are free to consult prices on offer in other countries. Should they prefer to take advantage of deals available in other countries, he added, they may do so by reserving them through their local call centre.
Kauffmann said the company had not yet received notification of the probe from either the European Commission or French authorities, who have the
responsibility of ensuring that Disneyland Paris is complying with EU fair trade laws, according to an EU source.
Story continues below…
The case comes just days after Disney was among several Hollywood studios targeted in a separate investigation as part of a wider Commission crackdown on unfair treatment of consumers.
US firms have borne the brunt of the crackdown, with high-profile cases launched against Google, Apple and Amazon.
Last week, the Commission accused Sky TV and six top Hollywood studios including Disney of breaching antitrust laws by using movie licenses to block access to pay TV content in other European countries.

The Local/AFP (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
How speaking French can really mess up your English
Photo: CollegeDegree360/Flickr

So you've mastered French, but now it's time to learn English all over again.

French claims that Jungle camp is empty are rubbished
Photo: AFP

Reports from the scene say scores of migrants are still in the area of the Jungle despite French authorities claiming "mission fulfilled."

Kidnapped Riviera millionaire left tied up in car boot in Nice
Photo: AFP

Head of luxury Cannes hotel has been found alive after being kidnapped in Nice on Monday.

Paris landlords still charging illegally high rents
Photo: Panoramas/Flickr

... and it's tenants in the smaller apartments that get hit the hardest. Could you be paying too much?

France takes baby steps to make life simpler
Photo: AFP

... including extending the ridiculously short time limit for registering a new baby.

IN PICTURES: Calais Jungle camp goes up in flames
All Photos: AFP

Migrants leave behind a scorched camp as they are moved to locations across France.

French expats in UK suffer Brexit abuse
French ambassador to the UK Sylvie Bermann with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. Photo: AFP

French nationals no longer feel at home in the UK, ambassador says. But Brits in France have been greeted with sympathy since the referendum.

Six to go on trial in France over topless Kate photos
Photo: AFP

The topless pics sparked fury among the royals.

France sees biggest drop in jobless rate for 20 years
Photo: AFP

Good news at last. But it's unlikely to keep President François Hollande in his job.

Calais migrants given mixed reception in French towns
Photo: AFP

Some in France have shown solidarity with their new guests, while others have made it clear they are not welcome.

The annoying questions only a half French, half Brit can answer
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Forget Brangelina's chateau - here are nine others you've got to see
The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
jobs available