April 1, 2019, the marked the first anniversary of Europeans being able to travel across the EU and take advantage abroad of their online subscriptions, for example, to films, sports programs, e-books, video games, and music services. The EU’s regulation on portability of online content services, also known as the portability regulation, enables consumers to access their portable online content services when they travel in the EU in the same way they access them at home. The regulation is part of the EU’s Digital Single Market.

A new Eurobarometer survey (March 2019) conducted in Feb. 2019 in all 28 member states, as well as Albania, North Macedonia, Turkey, Serbia, and Montenegro, shows that since the new rules entered into force half of travelers in the EU took advantage of the option to access their online subscriptions while underway in the EU. Music was by far the most commonly accessed medium, followed by films and TV series, sports, games, and e-books. Half of the Europeans surveyed were aware that it is possible to access paid subscriptions for online content services when staying temporarily in another EU state. Half of those who know about it actually accessed online content while abroad in the EU. And nearly 60% of those to accessed their subscriptions found that it worked well. The survey found that even people who do not have online subscriptions think it is important to be able to use them across EU borders. The younger the respondent, the more likely he or she to value the right.

[Text: Paul Hockenos]