Liepāja-Rīga-Daugavpils bus route planned next year

Next spring, among the largest cities – Liepāja, Rīga, and Daugavpils – the longest bus route in Latvia is planned to be introduced by Lux Express, one of the largest bus carriers in the Baltics, Latvian Radio reported on November 15.

The passenger carrier company Lux Express, which also operates international services, also plans to travel on the Rīga-Liepāja and Liepāja-Daugavpils routes. These would be commercial trips, meaning the company won't get a dime from the country.

Six trips are expected between the capital and Liepāja every weekday and seven during the weekend.  On the other hand, Liepāja-Daugavpils bus will run once a day. In addition, the bus will also enter Rīga. So buses will resume running daily between the capital city and Latvia's second-largest city. There are currently no regular buses between Rīga and Daugavpils.

From Liepāja to Daugavpils, the ticket could cost around EUR 20. If the response is high, the company will be ready to increase the number of trips.

Lux Express is planning to start the trips in May. First of all, it is necessary to obtain authorisation from the Road Transport Administration.

State-provided bus rides between Rīga and Liepāja are operated by Liepāja Bus Park. There are at least 20 trips every day, fewer on Sundays. They have been filled at around half on average in recent months, according to the Road Transport Administration, which is a good indicator.

Ivo Osenieks, President of the Latvian Passenger Carriers Association, looks positively at the Lux Express initiative:

“We are increasingly seeing that Liepāja Bus Park is unable to carry out the trips and is unable to meet the commitments it made in the competition. The important thing now, therefore, is to ensure that passengers have access to regular public transport. In my view, the contracting authority must assess which routes are to be removed from the “Liepaja Bus Park” contract for Rīga-Liepāja [..].”

Ošenieks said the issue of compensations for commercial carriers when passengers entitled to discounts are onboard has still not been resolved. Now the companies themselves have to cover it. But Ošenieks pointed out that the plan is developing in the right direction. Amendments to the Law are currently being updated in accordance with the opinions and objections of the parties involved in order to submit them for re-examination at the meeting of State Secretaries at the end of November.

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