Strasbourg, 15 February 2011
Commission welcomes European Parliament approval for bus and coach passenger rights
The European Commission welcomes the European Parliament voting today in favour of a regulation on rights of passengers travelling by bus and coach after difficult negotiations. After air, rail and water, now transport by road will also be covered by a specific set of rights for passengers, thus completing the legal framework for users of all transport modes at EU level. Bus and coach passengers, and in particular passengers with a disability and people with a reduced mobility, will enjoy new rights that will protect them when they travel anywhere within the European Union.
Siim Kallas, Commission Vice-President in charge of transport, said: "Thanks to this new regulation, passenger rights will be extended also to bus and coach transport. Passengers travelling by road will benefit from the same basic service quality standards wherever and however they travel in the Union. With the adoption of a regulation on rights for bus and coach passengers EU passenger protection will now cover all modes. I am very satisfied that the EU has established the first integrated area of passenger rights for all modes of transport in the world."
The adoption of the regulation on bus and coach passenger rights follows shortly after the adoption of regulation 1177/2010 on passenger rights for maritime and inland waterways transport which will enter into force in December 2012.
Now that the coverage of all transport modes by EU passenger rights legislation has been achieved, the Commission will prepare a communication reviewing the features of passenger protection in all transport sectors in view of enhancing their consistency and effectiveness in the context of an ever-increasing intermodal transport.
The new rights applicable to long distance services (i.e. of more than 250 km) include amongst others:
Additionally, the following rights will be applicable to all services (beyond or below 250 km):
After today's vote in the European Parliament and Council's endorsement on 31 January 2011, the regulation will be formally adopted tomorrow. Its publication is expected before summer. The Regulation is due to enter into application two years after its publication.