The international carriage of passengers by coach and bus is conditional on the possession of a Community licence. Any road passenger transport operator possessing a valid Community licence, issued by the Member State of establishment, has free access to the whole international EU road transport market.

This document is issued by the designated competent authority in each Member State provided that the carrier:

  • is authorised to undertake carriage in the Member State of establishment;
  • satisfies the conditions laid down in EU rules and USA  rules on access to the profession;
  • meets legal requirements regarding the standards of drivers and vehicles.

  • Carriers are required to carry a certified true copy of the Community licence on board each of their vehicles, in order to facilitate effective controls by enforcement authorities, especially those outside the Member State in which the carrier is established.

    The Regulation defines the different types of coach and bus service and the specific requirements they must fulfil to access the market:

  • regular services, which require a national authorisation issued by a competent authority;
  • special regular services (e.g. the transport of workers or schoolchildren), which shall not require a national authorisation, if covered by a contract between the organiser and the transport operator;
  • occasional services (e.g. the transport of a group of young people to a concert in another Member State, or a one-off tourist trip), which only require a journey form;
  • own-account transport, meaning transport which is not for hire or reward, and related authorisations and rules, which are exempt of the authorisation system, but require a certificate issued by the Member State in which the vehicle is registered.

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