GERMANY The German Bundesrat, the upper house of parliament has voted in favour of draft Federal Government legislation which will stop the introduction of motorway tolls for tour coaches. While the issue is not totally disposed, the RDA International Coach Tourism Federation has welcomed the news, saying it is a “major success” for the coach tourism industry.
Opposition SPD and Green Party governed states and Bundesrat committees calling for the tolling measures suffered an overwhelming defeat. RDA President Richard Eberhardt stated he was now at ease and delighted intensive coach sector lobbying since early September 2011 had paid off. Eberhardt offered his thanks to those decision-makers and organisations who supported the RDA in its efforts to prevent motorway tolls for tour coaches, in particular RDA members who actively lobbied their MPs and political parties in advance of the vote.
In a statement, the RDA explained: “It does not bear thinking of what effects the introduction of motorway tolls would have had on coach operators’ costs and coach holiday prices. The RDA will, needless to say, remain vigilant on behalf of its members on this important industry matter.
“The RDA considers tourguiding a high priority issue. The quality of coach holidays and client satisfaction are dependent upon many factors. A sure guarantee for well-run and well-received coach holidays are professional tour guides. Qualified tour guides are a key for successful and safe coach holidays; they are calling cards for companies and important image bearers for the coach tourism sector as a whole.”