PRIVATE INTERNATIONAL LAW
“Directing” activity on website to Member State
• In order to determine whether a trader whose activity is presented on its website or on that of an intermediary can be considered to be ‘directing’ its activity to the Member State of the consumer’s domicile, within the meaning of Article 15(1)(c) of Regulation No 44/2001, it should be ascertained whether, before the conclusion of any contract with the consumer, it is apparent from those websites and the trader’s overall activity that the trader was envisaging doing business with consumers domiciled in one or more Member States, including the Mem-ber State of that consumer’s domicile, in the sense that it was minded to conclude a contract with them.
• The following matters, the list of which is not exhaustive, are capable of constituting evidence from which it may be concluded that the trader’s activity is directed to the Member State of the con-sumer’s domicile, namely
the international nature of the activity,
mention of itineraries from other Member States for going to the place where the trader is estab-lished,
use of a language or a currency other than the lan-guage or currency generally used in the Member State in which the trader is established with the possibility of making and confirming the reserva-tion in that other language,
mention of telephone numbers with an interna-tional code,
outlay of expenditure on an internet referencing service in order to facilitate access to the trader’s site or that of its intermediary by consumers domi-ciled in other Member States,
use of a top-level domain name other than that of the Member State in which the trader is estab-lished, and
mention of an international clientele composed of customers domiciled in various Member States.
It is for the national courts to ascertain whether such evidence exists.
• On the other hand, the mere accessibility of the trader’s or the intermediary’s website in the Mem-ber State in which the consumer is domiciled is in-sufficient.
• The same is true of mention of an email address and of other contact details, or of use of a language or a currency which are the language and/or cur-rency generally used in the Member State in which the trader is established.