Bus and coach drivers – EU rules on driving and rest times
The EU rules on driving time, breaks and rest periods apply equally to lorry drivers and bus and coach drivers. However, these rules are not always suitable for passenger transport.
This initiative aims to address the specific needs of bus and coach drivers in organising their working time.
This public consultation is open. Your input will be taken into account as we further develop and fine-tune this initiative. We will summarise the input we receive in a synopsis report, explaining how we have taken it into account.
This consultation is about occasional bus and coach transport, which can be defined as the carriage of groups of passengers by bus or coach on the initiative of customers or by the carrier itself. Typical examples: multi-day visits or tours, excursions or day trips. It is distinguished from regularly scheduled transport, which consists of trips operating on a defined schedule, such as inter-city coach services.
Under current EU rules, professional drivers involved in the occasional transport of passengers by bus and coach are subject to the same rules on the organisation of working and driving times, breaks and rest periods as truck drivers involved in the carriage of goods. The rules are defined in Regulation (EC) No 561/2006. While this was amended in 2020 by Regulation (EU) 2020/1054, the changes focused on the most pressing issues in road haulage, leaving aside concerns that the rules are not well adapted to the needs of the occasional bus and coach sector.
The aim of this consultation is two-fold: (1) to gather views and experiences on the current rules, in terms of working conditions, stress and fatigue of drivers, difficulties with compliance and regulatory costs, as well as their role in responding to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic; and (2) to help assess the advantages and disadvantages of several options for potential changes.
The target audience is all interested parties, including professional drivers, bus and coach operators, representative organisations and individual citizens.
The consultation will take about 20 minutes to complete. A summary of the responses will be published on the Better Regulation portal after the end of the consultation period.
For reference, the relevant rules are summarised below, as defined in Regulation (EC) No 561/2006.
Breaks (Article 7)
Rests (Article 8)
Driving time (Articles 6 and 12)
Multi-manning derogations (Articles 4, 7 and 8)
The Commission will evaluate the current rules and may propose measures to meet these needs.