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Connecting Ireland Project Launched

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  • Registered Users Posts: 17,245 ✭✭✭✭ namloc1980
    Registered User


    Sensible ticketing and fares will be keys to success here as there is more emphasis on hubs and connections for onward journeys.



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,691 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990
    Registered User


    I'm seeing from the Dublin proposals that there is a new proposed route called the 23 from Galway to Dublin via Ballinasloe, Oranmore, Loughrea & Athlone. That new proposed PSO route seems like a really good idea to address the recent scrapping of the 20/X20 from BÉ's Expressway network.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    No there is not.

    There is a regional corridor number 23 between Galway and Dublin.

    This is about the NTA trying to co-ordinate services along regional corridors where several exist.

    Some of the services may be PSO and others may be commercial.



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,445 ✭✭✭ Pete_Cavan
    Registered User


    I didn't see anything about it on the links provided, do we know is the intentionfor the NTA to provide the buses for private operators or will private operators be using whatever clapped out buses they can get their hands on?

    Is there any chance of RTPI being rolled out with this (perhaps on app only rather than fixed displays)? For people to switch over to buses, they will need to have confidence that the bus will show up.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    If private operators hold commercial licenses for a route then they will obviously provide the vehicles themselves.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 17,245 ✭✭✭✭ namloc1980
    Registered User


    The Connecting Ireland consultation report has been published and worth a look. Interestingly only 12 of the c.220 members of the Oireachtas filed a submission. Given the number of rural TDs constantly banging on about poor connectivity you'd think they'd be all over this but seems not.




  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    A progress update on the Connecting Ireland plan was published in August 2022, as the improved services are now being rolled out across the country:

    To that point, service increases had been implemented on the following routes - which are all regular bus services:

    Local Link 176 - Cavan-Monaghan (via Clones) (April 2022)

    Local Link 195 - Ashbourne-Balbriggan (May 2022)

    Local Link 840 - Banagher-Tullamore (June 2022)

    Local Link 978 - Belmullet-Castlebar (June 2022)

    A new route was implemented in Clare:

    Local Link C23 - Ballyvaughan-Ennis (May 2022)


    Some more regional improvements have happened since then:

    Local Link 264 - Ballyshannon-Letterkenny (new route - September 2022)

    Local Link 572 - Ballinamore-Drumshanbo-Sligo (additional services - September 2022)

    Local Link 953 - East Inishowen-Letterkenny (additional services - September 2022)

    Local Link 977 - Castlerea-Ballaghaderreen-Sligo (additional services - September 2022)

    Local Link 880 - Carlow-Naas (additional services - September 2022)



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    Further improvements from this weekend in Wexford and Carlow:

    Frequencies and Service Levels to Increase on Routes 368 and 369

    23RD SEPTEMBER 2022


    A new timetable will come into effect on TFI Local Link Wexford Routes 368 and 369 from tomorrow Saturday 24th September 2022.


    Route 368 New Ross to Tullow will operate as New Ross to Enniscorthy and run six times per day Monday to Saturday and five times a day on Sunday with additional stops in New Ross and adding Davidstown to the service. This will be the first seven-day service provided to and from the village of Davidstown.


    Route 369 Bunclody to Enniscorthy will run seven times per day Monday to Saturday between Enniscorthy and Bunclody and four times a day on Sunday. The service will also be extended to and from Tullow, four times a day Monday to Friday, and once a day at the weekends. The service will provide a seven-day regular service to the villages of Clohamon, Kilmyshall, Castledockrell and Marshallstown. The service will also include Ryland Wood, Old Forest and Carrig Bán.


    The new timetables will provide onward connections to and from New Ross to Waterford. From Enniscorthy there will be connection options to Wexford and Dublin. From Tullow there will be onward options with TFI Local Link Carlow Kilkenny Wicklow and from Bunclody with Wexford Bus and Bus Éireann.


    These TFI Local Link route enhancements are funded by the National Transport Authority as part of the Transport for Ireland Network.


    For route and timetable information, locallinkwexford.ie

    The timetables are here:

    368: https://locallinkwexford.ie/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/368-New-Ross-to-Enniscorthy.pdf

    369: https://locallinkwexford.ie/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/369-Enniscorthy-to-Tullow.pdf



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    Local Link are also filling in for the withdrawal recently of two commercial services:

    1) Buggy's Coaches commercial routes 890 and 891 between Castlecomer and Kilkenny

    NTA to fund bus service between Castlecomer and Kilkenny

    19TH SEPTEMBER 2022


    The NTA has announced that from today, it will be funding a bus service between Castlecomer and Kilkenny, operated by TFI Local Link Carlow Kilkenny Wicklow.


    It follows the announcement that Buggy’s Coaches have suspended their 890 and 891 services along this route.


    The NTA-funded service will operate two services each day. One will leave Castlecomer at 07:45 for Kilkenny and one will return from Kilkenny from 17:45 to Castlecomer.


    This service is a temporary measure and has been put in place with immediate effect to ensure that people retain the ability to travel to and from work in Kilkenny by public transport. At €5 per single journey, the fare has not changed from that charged by the previous operator.


    The NTA will now commence work to determine the ongoing public transport requirement in the area, and to assess how best to secure additional services, should these be required.


    For further information please call the TFI Local Link Carlow Kilkenny Wicklow office on 0818 42 41 41 / 056 771 5912 or visit locallinkckw.ie.


    2) JJ Kavanagh's Kilcullen-Newbridge route 129 service

    Temporary timetable here:

    https://www.transportforireland.ie/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/TFI-LL-Kildare-South-Dublin-R129-V4.pdf

    Post edited by LXFlyer on


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    A new route being launched in Galway and Mayo from next Monday, 3rd October.

    TFI Local Link Galway are launching a new bus service – Route 431 Claremorris to Carraroe

    26TH SEPTEMBER 2022

    From Monday 3rd October, TFI Local Link Galway will launch route 431 Claremorris to Carraroe, a new seven-days-a-week service.


    The service will run four times a day, covering Carraroe, Costelloe, Screebe, Maam Cross, Maum, Cornamona, Clonbur, Cong, Neale, Ballinrobe, Hollymount, and Claremorris creating a new connection between Costelloe and Claremorris. The new service will also provide improved connectivity to regional rail services from Claremorris, and regional bus services at both Maam Cross and Costelloe.


    This new route is funded by the National Transport Authority as part of the TFI Network.


    Speaking ahead of the launch, Galway based Minister in the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton TD, said: “I am delighted to see the launch of the new Route 431 service in Galway, which will be creating a new connection between Costelloe and Claremorris. Critically, the service will also improve connectivity for families and communities to existing regional rail services from Claremorris, and regional bus services at both Maam Cross and Costelloe. These enhanced routes under the Connecting Ireland plans pave the way for improved connectivity to town centres and further support local communities in making the shift to public transport”.


    Speaking ahead of the launch, TFI Local Link Galway Manager Joe Greally said: “This new service will be a fantastic new travel option to the people living along the route by creating daily links to Claremorris and Galway City via Costello. It is the culmination of many months of planning and consultation, and I am sure that the service will be very well supported.


    TFI Local Link rural transport services are an important component of daily life linking people with jobs, education, healthcare, shopping and recreation/tourist facilities. The design of a sustainable transport infrastructure has a fundamental impact on the health and wellbeing of people in the community. It helps address social isolation, improves overall accessibility and provides opportunities for active regular transport and daily physical activity”.


    For route and timetable information, call (091) 842 384 or visit locallinkgalway.ie

    The timetable is below:




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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,922 ✭✭✭ Vic_08
    Registered User


    Oh dear.


    Due to operational issues, Route 386 New Ross to Enniscorthy and 369 Enniscorthy to Bunclody & Tullow will operate a reduced timetable from the 28th of September until further notice.  Please keep an eye on our website & social media channels for further updates. You can contact us by phone on 053 9o1 1828 or 053 919 6276, email us at [email protected], use our Contact Us form on our website or PM us on Facebook.

    Temporary timetable is listed in the drop down menu above.

    We apologise for any inconvenience caused.



    https://locallinkwexford.ie/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/368_369-Temporary-Service-1.pdf


    More improvements that take no account of the driver recruitment issues I'm guessing.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    To be fair that is very unusual for Local Link as it’s a smaller knit operation that usually doesn’t suffer the same issues.

    It could be a bus issue - it’s down to a single bus operation looking at the timetable.



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,351 ✭✭✭✭ Geuze
    Registered User


    For the first time, I have seen the Local Link list of routes and timetables on the TFI website.

    Unreal.

    I am into public transit, yet I was not aware of the scale involved.

    Dozens of routes.

    Some counties, like Donegal, have loads of routes.

    The maps are poor, though.

    We need maps with all services on the one map: trains, BE Expressway, BE local, Local Link, all busses.

    We also need, as I have been saying for years, fare integration.

    By this I mean, take three modes, pay one fare.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    I am not sure how people are missing Local Link.

    They have been running seven day a week regular rural services since well before Covid, and even then had a large network in the northwest.

    It is the principal way that the NTA are expanding rural public transport. There are Bus Éireann service expansions coming too but Local Link can offer higher frequency on rural services with smaller buses where appropriate. They do run coaches and larger buses on busier routes such as Thurles-Limerick.

    Agreed on the maps - they’re awful.

    As for fares, there are fare charts for every Local Link route on the TFI website (linked from the Local Link page) and they are usually some way cheaper than BE would charge, so I think I’d keep schtum on that one.

    LEAP and the TFI Go app are being rolled out now across the network of Local Link routes with the LEAP discount applying.



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,351 ✭✭✭✭ Geuze
    Registered User


    Are BE the operator of Local Link?

    If not, how do they feel about it?

    Does the NTA take revenue risk?



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,006 ✭✭✭ piplip87
    Registered User


    I see the Donegal -Dublin service seems to be routed through Kells according to the map. I dont know why they do not do something in Virginia. Like if your travelling to Navan and Kells before Virginia just change bus and let the bus go straight up the motorway for those travelling to Dublin.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    Local Link is run by a network of 15 locally based companies around the country as per the list of regions on the page behalf of the NTA. They in turn contract bus companies to operate the service. The NTA manage the whole process.

    The NTA takes the revenue risk.

    It has nothing to do with BÉ so what they think is irrelevant.

    Local Link was set up some time ago by the NTA to develop rural bus services, where bus services didn’t exist or to expand services from the traditional once a week rural BÉ service to multiple daily services using smaller buses.

    That’s in addition to the Demand Responsive Transport (DRT) or “dial-a-ride” services that they also operate.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    The 30 is a commercially operated route by Bus Éireann without state subsidy.

    It does not serve Kells but does serve Virginia.

    Passengers can change to/from the 109X at Virginia.



  • Registered Users Posts: 16,589 ✭✭✭✭ breezy1985
    Registered User


    Be careful with the TFI website and check the timetable with your local site and operator.

    I got stuck in Limerick junction for hours because the TFI site and app had an outdated timetable. When I complained they kept trying to blame the local operator who had the correct one and 6 months on have not updated the TFI site.

    Absolutely brilliant initiative though and long overdue.

    Agree on fare integration too or even just simplify payment methods. In Limerick I cant pay for a simple €5 train journey with a leap card. One payment method across the entire journey would be great.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    Each of the 15 Local Link operations does also have their own website and social media pages where they can respond to local needs.

    To be fair the TFI website page does now appear to be updated on a regular and timely basis with timetable and fare information.

    All of the Local Link services are on the TFI journey planner as well.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 11,351 ✭✭✭✭ Geuze
    Registered User


    I am all for multiple operators, but I would like to see:

    one journey planner (seems to be the case, great) (but is IE on it?)

    one ticket - by this I mean the ultimate of train + BE bus + Local Link on the one ticket (possible in theory?)

    one mapping architecture

    the same signage nationwide



  • Registered Users Posts: 16,589 ✭✭✭✭ breezy1985
    Registered User


    The TFI journey planner and the TFI app have various types of buses and trains. But it takes a bit of getting used to certain aspects like it won't tell you if a bus has been cancelled so you have to learn to spot the duds.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,006 ✭✭✭ piplip87
    Registered User


    Yes but if you see the new map. The 30 route is going to encompass the 109x and the 30 service under the banner of 30/



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    I wouldn’t take the map as being 100% accurate. It doesn’t show Kells bypass for example. It’s really only indicative.

    The “31” is a corridor rather than a route per se.

    If you read the blurb they’re going to try and integrate the services within that better.

    Within the 31 corridor, the 30/X30 will remain a commercial route, backed up by the PSO 109, 109A, 109B, 109X and NX.

    I would not expect Bus Éireann agree to making the 30/X30 slower - it’s their route after all. But I’d expect the 109X to maybe fit in with it better.

    Where there are commercial routes involved, there’s going to have be discussions with the NTA. I wouldn’t read too much into it as yet.

    The focus right now is on improving PSO frequency and on new rural PSO routes.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    They are all on the TFI Journey planner.

    Ultimately I’d expect to be able to pay for any bus journey using LEAP, along with commuter rail. As it is all BÉ services, be they commercial or PSO take LEAP or the TFI Go ticketing app and increasing numbers of Local Link services do too.

    InterCity rail is more complicated as you have promotional fares online, family tickets etc.

    TFI bus stops are being rolled out across the country but it is going to take time given the scale of the number of stops nationwide.



  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User


    Another service to commence on Monday 3rd October:

    TFI Local Link Limerick Clare are launching a new bus service – Route 595 Tarbert to Croom

    30TH SEPTEMBER 2022


    From Monday 3rd October, TFI Local Link Limerick Clare will launch the 595 seven-days-a-week service with a new peak-time service for commuters to Newcastle West.


    The service will run three times a day, covering Tarbert, Glin, Athea, Carrikerry, Ardagh, Newcastle West, Ballingarry and Croom including a connection to Mid-Western Regional Orthopaedic Hospital. The new service will also provide access to the Limerick Greenway at Ardagh and Newcastle West and a new peak-time service for commuters to Newcastle West.


    This new route is funded by the NTA as part of the Transport for Ireland Network.


    Speaking ahead of the launch, Chairperson of TFI Local Link Limerick Clare, Dearbhla Conlon Ahern said: ‘We are delighted this new service will launch in early October. This is an essential service providing transport access to Newcastle West for students, shoppers and workers in the area and giving an onward link to Kerry. This will be the fifth RRS service in Limerick from the strategic plan for a rural Limerick transport network’.


    TFI Local Link fares have also been reduced. The Government announced that public transport fares were being reduced by an average of 20% across all Transport for Ireland services last April.  An adult single journey from Tarbert to Newcastle West costs just €4.00 and an adult single journey from Newcastle West to Croom costs just €4.00. Substantial discounts can also be had by using the TFI Go app on your smart phone or Leap Card. TFI Local Link also accept Free Travel Passes.


    TFI Local Link rural transport services are an important component of daily life linking people with jobs, education, healthcare, shopping and recreation/tourist facilities. The design of a sustainable transport infrastructure has a fundamental impact on the health and wellbeing of people in the community. It helps address social isolation, improves overall accessibility and provides opportunities for active regular transport and daily physical activity.


    For further information please call the TFI Local Link Limerick Clare office on 069 22311, or visit https://www.locallinklc.ie/ or visit their Facebook and Instagram pages.

    The timetable is here:

    https://www.locallinklc.ie/2022/09/29/595-tarbert-glin-athea-carrigkerry-ardagh-newcastle-west-ballingarry-croom/



  • Registered Users Posts: 16,589 ✭✭✭✭ breezy1985
    Registered User


    Limerick to Ennis definitely and I'm pretty sure to LJ is a set price but yet no leap card. It's not got to do with commuter or not. Its got to do with infrastructure.

    Pretty sure Galway to Oranmore and Athenry had no card option too.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,922 ✭✭✭ Vic_08
    Registered User




  • Registered Users Posts: 16,589 ✭✭✭✭ breezy1985
    Registered User


    That's great to see. It's mad how many towns like Croom are badly connected in Limerick.

    I see the Loop Head service is getting added frequency too. I have looked at that before but sadly didn't run. When that area would be packed at the weekend and not enough services to have a look round and not get stranded. I'de say it will be a big success.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 15,978 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer
    Registered User



    All of those journeys are actually on the Intercity fares matrix and there are cheaper fares sold online, and there are also some promotional fares available at the station for some of them.

    LEAP pay-as-you-go can only be used on Irish Rail for:

    • Journeys within the Dublin Short Hop zone
    • Journeys between Mallow, Cork, Midleton and Cobh.

    These are on the more heavily subsidised suburban fares matrix and where the fares are fixed with no promotional discounted fares available.

    Post edited by LXFlyer on


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