EU's top court says budget carrier Ryanair can block unauthorized price comparison sites

IndustrialsAssociated Press

The European Union's top court has ruled that Ryanair has the right to block or impose conditions on price comparison websites that mine data from the budget carrier's online database without its permission.

In a ruling Thursday, the European Court of Justice said price and flight information linked to Ryanair's website is not covered by a European Union directive on databanks and that means the airline can limit its use by others.

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The court's decision came in a long-running dispute in Dutch courts between Ryanair and Dutch company PR Aviation over a practice known as screen scraping.

Ryanair welcomed the ruling and urged passengers to use the carrier's own website to book flights. PR Aviation could not immediately be reached for comment.

Ryanair is Europe's biggest budget airline.