No More EU Travel Restrictions for Online Content

From April 1st 2018 – anyone in the EU who has paid for subscriptions to online media services  such as Sky, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon Prime etc – will be able to access their content while they travel in the EU.

Up to now – many of the online media companies restricted viewing or listening to the customer’s home country – but from April 1st this will no longer be the case.

The new EU wide rules only apply to Paid for servces –  but providers of free content can choose to opt in.
Public broadcasting services  such as RTe Player and BBC iPlayer are not covered by the new rules – they do not have to make viewing available outside your home country. (They could choose to do so if theywish.)

Under the new rules – providers of paid-for online content services (such as online movie, TV or music streaming services) will have to provide their Irish subscribers with the same service wherever the subscriber is in the EU. The service has to be provided in the same way in other Member States, as in Ireland. So for Netflix for example, you will have access to the same selection (or catalogue) anywhere in the EU, if you are temporarily abroad, just as if you were at home.

Other examples of services affected –   video-on-demand platforms (Netflix, HBO Go, Amazon Prime, Mubi, Chili TV), online TV services (Viasat’s Viaplay, Sky’s Now TV, Voyo), music streaming services (Spotify, Deezer, Google Music) or game online marketplaces (Steam, Origin).

Note to anyone in Northern Ireland or ather parts of the UK –

UK subscribers will only benefit from the new rules up until Brexit. It’s been confirmed that after March 2019 the portability rules will no longer apply to UK subscribers.