Most school transport providers cannot guarantee service provision up to June

Most School Transport Providers Cannot Guarantee Service Provision Up To June
The Coach Tourism and Transport Council of Ireland is calling on the Government to urgently reduce the VAT rate on fuel. Photo: PA
Share this article

Most school transport providers cannot guarantee service provision up to June, according to a survey from the Coach Tourism and Transport Council of Ireland (CTTC), with spiralling fuel costs following the pandemic cited as a major factor.

The survey from Ireland’s largest representative body for private bus and coach operators found that 95 per cent of school transport providers say it is not commercially viable to continue running services up to June 2022 without any subvention or support.


Nearly two-thirds of operators have seen fuel costs increase by more than 50 per cent in the past year, driving the organisation to call on the Government to urgently reduce the VAT rate on fuel to nine per cent.

The CTTC said 43 per cent of its membership identified this VAT rate reduction as their preferred solution.

“The pandemic dealt a significant blow to the commercial bus and coach industry with the low use of public transport but just as business began to pick up, the impact of the war in Ukraine has resulted in soaring fuel costs,” said CTTC chairperson John Halpenny.

“Fuel is a mission-critical expense for the industry and where we are witnessing exponential growth in costs, it is clear that Governmental intervention is urgently required to rescue the sector from failure.


“To expect the industry to provide the same scheduling for the same pricing against the backdrop of 50-60 per cent increases in fuel is frankly unrealistic, unsustainable and totally unaffordable.”

Existential crisis

The CTTC warned that the situation is likely to cause significant disruption for regional commuters, given that the majority of private operators provide transport in areas outside of Dublin.

“Government must recognise there is an existential crisis facing the industry and in the absence of suitable policy intervention, consistency of school transport services cannot be guaranteed,” Mr Halpenny said.

“There is a workable precedence to these challenges that must be seriously considered to get the industry through this significant set-back.

“Providing a temporary VAT reduction, akin to what was introduced for the hospitality industry, would represent a crucial lifeline to many operators and particularly those operating in the school transport space.”

This article was amended at 2.12pm on 14/3/22.

Read More

Message submitting... Thank you for waiting.

Want us to email you top stories each lunch time?

Download our Apps
© 2023, developed by Square1 and powered by