The Smart Move High Level Group (HLG) was born on 29 February 2012, at the 2nd IRU/EU Road Transport Conference on “Efficient solutions for making road transport greener” held in Brussels. It aims to strengthen cooperation between all relevant public and private EU stakeholders to determine the appropriate actions to effectively double collective passenger transport by bus and coach and achieve rapid and sustainable growth in the EU.
To achieve this goal, the HLG will meet every three months over one year (2012-13) to deliver policy and business recommendation and best practices on the use of collective passenger transport by road, with an Action Plan with recommended deadlines, for the period 2013/2015-2030.
Intercity and long distance regular lines by bus and coach
Intercity bus and coach transport in Europe is a large and growing business. Experience has shown that European countries such as Spain and Norway, which have opened their intercity travel market to private bus and coach businesses, have achieved spectacular results, benefiting both customers and businesses alike, in terms of higher service quality and steadily increasing ridership. In Norway, ridership on long distance bus and coach lines in Norway has more than doubled in five years, attracting most of these new passengers from cars, rather than from competing train and air services.
Group tourism by coach
Europe is the world’s top tourist destination, with more than 40% of all global tourist arrivals, both amongst Europeans and visitors from other continents. These figures are expected to grow significantly in the future. Yet, within these 370 millions tourist trips in Europe, the share of those made by coach is still marginal. The potential of this safe, green and comfortable door-to-door way to travel and visit Europe’s numerous places of interests is largely underexploited.
Urban mobility and commuting, including taxis
Buses and taxis are the largest commercial passenger transport service providers in both urban and rural areas in Europe. Due to their unparalleled flexibility, they are the closest complement, competitor, and substitute of the private car, with 97% of all individual movements of European citizens below 100 kilometres.