German Supreme court decides on tour organiser liabilty for local excursion

The plaintiffs had booked a package holiday to Bulgaria with the defendant. Upon arrival, they recieved a weclome folder which contained a sheet titled “Your Excursions”, carrying the defendant’s logo and promoting varoius events and excursions. In the bottom line it said that the excursions were organised by a local agency and the defendant would only act as an intermediary. However, the excursions were to be booked through the defendant’s local representative. The plaintiffs booked an excursion called “Jeep Safari”. On this excursion they suffered a car accident and were injured.The German Civil Supreme Court (BGH) held that from the perspective of an average consumer and taking into regard the overall impression, the defendant appeared to be the organiser of the excursion because the leaflet was part of the defendant’s weclcome folder, the excursions were promoted under the defendant’s logo and could be booked through the defendant’s representative whereas the information that the defendant only acted as an intermediary was only given in small print. The case was therefore referred back to the appealate court to investigate the circumstances of the accident.Source: BGH press release 4/2016 of Jan. 12, 2016 on BGH judgement X ZR 4/15 of of Jan. 12, 2016.

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