Protocol to the Agreement on the International Occasional Carriage of Passengers by Coach and Bus (Interbus Agreement)

As we know, the policies of the European Union and its contracting states always and everywhere promote international passenger transport in and through Europe.

It is a fact that European tourism has been increasing for years and continues to grow. The contracting parties to the Protocol to the Agreement on the International Occasional Carriage of Passengers by Coach and Bus have therefore extended the scope of application of the Interbus Agreement to include regular services and special regular services under certain conditions, as it has hitherto covered only occasional services.

This new Agreement has been negotiated between the European Commission and other fourteen third countries outside the European Union, thus regulating transport between the EU and these signatory countries.

The main features of the Agreement include the following:

  1. The liberalisation of regular services, and regular services subject to authorisation, should apply only to services to or from the contracting party of establishment of the road transport operator in which his vehicles are registered.

As a general rule, regular services shall be available worldwide, subject to compliance with the obligation to settle where appropriate.

  1. Regular or scheduled services to and from the same Contracting Party may not be operated by carriers established in another Contracting Party.
  2. They are extended to regular services, which are services that ensure the transport of persons with a specified frequency and route. These services can pick up and set down passengers at predetermined stops.

Special regular services mean regular services which provide for the carriage of specified categories of passengers to the exclusion of other passengers. These services shall include, inter alia, carriage to and from the place of work for workers and carriage to and from the educational institution for school pupils and students.

  1. The principle of non-discrimination on the grounds of nationality or place of establishment of the transport operator, and of the origin or destination of the coach or bus, and/or of the service provided, is prioritised as a basis for the provision of international road passenger transport services.
  2. It is necessary for the Contracting Parties to apply uniform social measures concerning the work of crews of buses and coaches engaged in international road transport, which are governed by the rules enshrined in the Interbus Convention, to which this Protocol should refer.
  3. The technical conditions applicable to buses and coaches operating international services between the contracting parties should be harmonised and should be governed by the rules enshrined in the Interbus Agreement.
  4. Carriers established in the European Union require an authorisation issued by the competent authority of the Member State of origin or destination of the transport.

Authorisations shall be issued in the name of the carrier and shall not be transferable.

The maximum period of validity of the authorisations shall be 5 years, and the minimum content of the authorisation shall include aspects such as: the type of service; the route; the period of validity of the authorisations; the stops and timetables.

These modifications are just some of the new guidelines for action implemented by the European Union to continue promoting cultural exchanges between the contracting parties to this