NTA and Bus Éireann launch East Coast Commuter Corridor from 7 May

New 24-hour coach service between Drogheda and Dublin serving Balbriggan, Balrothery, Swords and Dublin Airport

  • Passengers in Fingal, East Meath & Louth to see enhanced services on two key routes, with improved frequency, greater capacity and new accessible vehicles
  • Route 101 from Drogheda to Busáras serving Balbriggan, Balrothery, Swords and Dublin Airport to become a 24-hour service, while Route 101x will receive new double-deck coaches to improve capacity for passengers
  • Funded by the National Transport Authority (NTA), the routes will be operated by Bus Éireann, which won a competitive tender process
  • Newly enhanced services will launch for customers on Routes 101 and 101x from Sunday, 7 May 

The National Transport Authority (NTA) and Bus Éireann have today announced improved bus services for passengers in Fingal, East Meath and Louth through enhancements in Routes 101 and 101x.

Bus Éireann was announced as the operator of the routes following a competitive tender process. These two enhanced routes will operate on new, fully accessible vehicles provided by the NTA. The newly enhanced services will launch for customers from Sunday, 7 May. Full details and timetables are available at buseireann.ie

Route 101 from Drogheda to Busáras via Balbriggan, Balrothery, Swords and Dublin Airport will become a full 24-hour service, with 293 departures each way per week operated on a fleet of new, fully accessible double and single deck coaches. On Route 101, passenger numbers are currently running 37 percent ahead of 2019 and it is projected that this route will carry a record one million passengers this year.

Route 101x from Drogheda to Wilton Terrace in Dublin via Balbriggan and Balrothery will see the frequency of services maintained, with services operated on a greater number of accessible single deck buses and double deck coaches in response to increased passenger demand.

Following fare reductions on public transport services last year, public transport has become more affordable than ever. A single, adult Leap Card fare from Balbriggan to Dublin is just €4.06. Fares for people aged 19-23 years who have a Young Adult Leap Card will be just €2.03.

Bus public transport in Ireland is going from strength-to-strength, with Bus Éireann delivering 89.5 million passenger journeys in 2022, a return to pre-Covid levels and with unprecedented growth in demand in recent months.

National Transport Authority (NTA) comment

‘’With passenger numbers on bus transport growing apace, we are delighted to deliver this new investment in public transport for Fingal,’’ said Anne Graham, CEO of the NTA. ‘’We know that where new and enhanced services are made available, people respond positively and choose to travel by bus.

The new, enhanced East Coast Commuter Corridor marks a step-change in bus transport in Fingal – with greater frequency, improved capacity and an entire fleet of new, fully accessible vehicles to service increased passenger demand.

We are happy to announce that Bus Éireann will operate these services, following a competitive tendering process completed last year. Through this significant investment, the NTA reaffirms our commitment to delivering greater connectivity for our communities and to responding to increased demand for public transport – with increased delivery.’’

Bus Éireann comment

‘’We are absolutely delighted to have been selected to operate the newly enhanced East Coast Commuter Corridor bus services, having delivered these essential routes to communities for many decades,’’ said Stephen Kent, CEO of Bus Éireann. ‘’As Ireland’s national bus company, Bus Éireann has a proud record of providing public transport services to communities both urban and rural. We are excited to partner with the NTA on these new and enhanced services and are committed to providing frequent, reliable and accessible bus services for our passengers in Fingal – and across the country.

“This was achieved through a commitment to delivering transformative sustainable public transport services, through investments by the NTA in new services, new vehicles and through the reduction in public transport fares. This new investment will mean a greater number of commuters, tourists, students, airport passengers and Free Travel Pass customers having the option to travel more sustainably by bus. Our mission to achieve a best-in-class customer experience is working, with our customer satisfaction rating above 90% for the last 12 months.

“There has never been a more exciting time to be involved in public transport in Ireland, with developments in BusConnects Cork and Galway and enhanced rural routes through Connecting Ireland, funded by the NTA. We have been actively recruiting for the expansion of our services with 19 new drivers joining Bus Éireann in recent months. We are also pleased that Bus Éireann has been successful in the recent tender process to introduce the first Carlow town bus service, commencing this summer,” Stephen Kent concluded.

Wednesday, 3rd May, 2023