Collective agreement for private bus companies

The new collective agreement for the bus sector has finally been signed!

On February 9, after lengthy negotiations and delays caused by the government’s initial reluctance to adjust the public tender budget on January 1, the new collective agreement for the private bus sector was finally signed by the OGBL, LCGB and FLEAA employers’ representatives, with retroactive effect from January 1, 2024 and for a period of 3 years.

The new collective agreement provides, among other things, the following improvements for mobile staff:

  • 13th month’s salary paid monthly, i.e. 1/12th of the salary each month as a wage supplement
  • lunch vouchers with a value of 10.80 euro for each shift of at least 6 hours for bus and minibus drivers
  • 4 additional days of annual leave
  • 500 euro increase in salary for drivers with D1 license
  • for bus drivers: a bonus of 80 euro for each day worked in excess of the normal number of days in a 4-month reference period
  • direct payment of the 80 euro bonus if the additional working days exceed 5.

These measures, some of which are historic, are 100% supported by the OGBL.

However, just before signing the agreement, FLEAA and LCGB, the majority union in the bus sector, modified certain passages in the text that deteriorate the collective agreement and had not been agreed in principle. The OGBL opposed these changes from the outset and insisted that the agreement in principle be applied one to one.

  • Only 2 additional days of leave after 25 years of service, instead of 2 days after 23 years and 1 day after 30 years (Article 9.2.1.).
  • Modification of article 2, which initially provided that the derogation for part-time workers regarding the overtime paid for shifts of less than 6 hours only applied if expressly stated in the employment contract; from now on, the derogation will automatically apply to all part-time workers.
  • Article 16.2. on the preparation of work schedules no longer refers to specific delays (previously 48 hours).

Both the employers and the LCGB, which currently has a slim majority in the sector, had already agreed not to revise these points. This could have been prevented by a united trade union front.

The OGBL, faced with a fait accompli and in order for the agreement to come into effect without further delay and for the drivers to finally enjoy their long-awaited 13th month’s pay, meal vouchers and extra days off, co-signed the agreement despite its objections.

It is incidents like this that show how important it is to strengthen the OGBL in the bus sector. The OGBL has proven many times in recent years that it is ready to defend the rights of all workers, even when others have already given in.

Press release of the Road Transport & Navigation/ACAL Syndicate,
February 9, 2024