IAA symposium on long-haul buses in Germany
In the short time since the market for long-distance bus services was de-regulated at the beginning of 2013, buses have become established as an important additional form of mobility in long-distance passenger transport. This development is clearly demonstrated in their acceptance by passengers and the expansion of the network into neighbouring European countries recently announced by some operators. As an environmentally friendly alternative offering good value, there are now more than 5,000 services available weekly, making coaches a fourth pillar of long-distance transport – alongside the railways, passenger cars and air travel.
Buses will also be one of the main topics at the 65th International Motor Show (IAA) Commercial Vehicles. In co-operation with the Bund Deutscher Omnibusunternehmer (German federation of bus operators, bdo) and the RDA International Coach Tourism Federation, the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) is organising a symposium entitled “Long-haul buses in Germany – environmentally friendly, attractive and barrier-free”. It will provide answers to the crucial questions in the bus sector which concern the market, the vehicles on offer from the manufacturers, and the customers’ demands.
VDA Managing Director Dr Kay Lindemann will open the event. This will be followed by a presentation by Martin Burkert, Member of the German Bundestag and Chairman of the Committee on Transport in the German Bundestag, on “Long-haul bus services in Germany – what has been achieved? What is still needed?” Torben Greve, Managing Director of MFB MeinFernbus GmbH, will consider “Two years of long-haul buses in Germany – a success story?” Ulf-D. Schwarz, Branch Manager at BSK (German self-help association for the physically disabled) will talk about barrier-free use of long distance buses. Robert Kappel, Director Product Engineering Raised Floor Buses/Systems at Daimler EvoBus GmbH, will deliver a lecture about solutions and challenges for barrier-free buses.
Martin Burkert, RDA President Richard Eberhardt, bdo President Wolfgang Steinbrück, Robert Kappel, and the Managing Director of FlixBus André Schwämmlein will take part in an in-depth panel discussion on “Long-haul buses in Germany – environmentally friendly, attractive and barrier-free”. A demonstration hosted by Thomas Sasse from TÜV Rheinland on the subject of barrier-free travel will finish off the event on the exhibition grounds.
The symposium will be held on Tuesday, 30 September 2014, from 10.00 h to 13.00 h in Room 3B of the Convention Center on the Hannover trade fair grounds, and will be hosted by Christoph Hamann from the broadcaster NDR Hannover.
The 65th IAA Commercial Vehicles is organised by the VDA and will run from 25 September to 2 October 2014. Under the slogan “Driving the future” it will present numerous world, European and German premieres along with a large number of specialist events and special shows. Comprehensive information about the exhibition and online registration for the specialist events are available on the new IAA website, at: www.iaa.de/en. Participation in the specialist events is free of charge for journalists.