Public Transport Contracts

The Authority is responsible for the procurement of public transport services in Ireland. It has entered into a series of contracts with public transport operators, both State-owned and private companies, for the provision of bus, tram and rail services

In general, the public transport contracts are for the provision of public transport services that are deemed socially necessary but are not commercially viable, and funding is provided by the Government for these services. Such services are often referred to as Public Service Obligation or “PSO” services.

The contracts set strict standards of operational performance and customer service, and allow for the Authority to impose payment deductions where performance does not meet contractual standards, or incentive payments where performance exceeds standards.

There are two types of public transport services contracts. They are:

  • Direct Award Contracts
  • Competitively Tendered Contracts

Direct Award Contracts

This type of public transport services contract is awarded without a competitive tendering process.

The Authority has Direct Award Contracts with the following transport operators:

  • Dublin Bus, for Dublin metropolitan area bus services
  • Bus Éireann, for city, town and regional bus services outside Dublin
  • Iarnród Éireann, for national rail services

You can find more specific information on each of the direct award contracts in the menu under this section.

Competitively tendered bus contracts

This type of contract is awarded following a competitive tendering process.

The Authority has competitively tendered contracts for the following bus services:

Area Routes operated Operator
Outer Dublin Metropolitan services Routes 175, 45/a/b, 75/a, 63/a, 59, 111, 184, 185, 33A, 33B, 102, 17A, 114, 161, 238, 239, 270, 104, 22/a, 236/a, 17/d, 18, 76 and 76a Go-Ahead Ireland Limited
Dublin Commuter (Kildare Corridor) Routes 120, 120C, 125, 126 and 130 Go-Ahead Ireland Limited
Swords – Ashbourne Route 197 Go-Ahead Ireland Limited
Waterford City Routes W1, W2, W3, W4 & W5 Bus Éireann
Naas – Blanchardstown Route 139 JJ Kavanagh & Sons Ltd
Kilkenny City Routes KK1 / KK2 City Direct Bus Ltd
Cavan – Longford Route 975 Andrew Wharton Coach Hire Ltd
Kilkenny – Dublin Route 817 Bernard Kavanagh & Sons Limited


You can find more detailed information on each of the competitively tendered contracts in the menu under this section.

Statutory Basis

The responsibilities and activities of the National Transport Authority in relation to the provision of public transport services are set out in two pieces of legislation: