Starting on April 1, 2009, the designation fee of a European patent application is € 500 independently of how many contracting states have been designated. This regulation concerns European patent applications filed on or after April 1, 2009 as well as international applications entering the regional phase on or after that date. For all previously filed applications, a designation fee of € 85 for each designated contracting state up to a maximum of 7 fees (€ 595) is due. The new regulation therefore leads to a reduction of costs if six or more contracting states are designated. For five or less contracting states, the designation becomes more expensive.