On 4 June 2019, the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf annulled the 22 December 2015 decision by the German Federal Cartel Office that prohibited Booking.com from applying so-called ‘narrow’ best price clauses in its contracts with hotels in Germany.

In its press release, the Court explained that Booking.com works by connecting hotels and customers for a fee charged to the hotels for every transaction (i.e. booking) made through the platform. Customers have therefore an easy ‘one-stop shop’ where they can see all available rooms and best prices at a glance.

If, however, hotels are able to offer better deals on their own websites, customers would be incentivized to gather valuable information on Booking.com and then make the final booking on the hotel’s own website, with the resulting loss in revenue for Booking.