home  › Business and economy

FS group entering bus long haul market in Italy and abroad with Busitalia Fast brand

by Morena Pivetti

Not just high speed trains but also an integrated offer aimed at covering different mobility needs, from urban and suburban commuters to long distance travellers. Not just railways but also buses. Ferrovie dello Stato group, through its bus subsidiary Busitalia-Sita Nord, is launching new long haul connections, under the brand Busitalia Fast, on the domestic market and at the European level. Starting with Germany to expand to France, Spain and Eastern Europe in June and throughout the summer.

FS is entering at full speed into a long haul bus market that’s rapidly growing, both in Italy and in Europe, and that is filling up the void left in the transport network by high speed train lines and by long distance trains. A very promising market.

The Italian railways giant presented the new brand in Berlin, one of the strongholds of FlixBus, the leading European player. The company was founded in 2013 by three young German entrepreneurs in Munich and now, after merging with another start up from Berlin, it claims to have built “Europe’s largest intercity bus network.” Italy included.

Busitalia Fast will connect 15 Italian regions and over 90 cities in Italy and Germany every day, using a fleet of new-generation buses offering a “high quality, innovative and superior service.” A service also integrated with other transport systems and in connection with the new sharing economy opportunities like car and bike sharing. In the summer travellers will also be able to have access to the search engines and the booking web site of Trenitalia’s train routes to plan their trips.

“Our goal is to become the number one European player in long haul and we are planning an increase in the number of served connections,” Busitalia-Sita Nord CEO Stefano Rossi explained. He said the new initiative is consistent with Ferrovie dello Stato 2017-2026 industrial plan, which among its targets has growth in the bus segment, both at home and abroad.

The brand Busitalia Fast is run by Busitalia Simet, a new transport company born thanks to the acquisition of 51% of Simet by Busitalia-Sita Nord. Simet is based in Italy’s south (with headquarters in Rossano, Cosenza), which has been in the long haul bus business since 1946 and is well-known in the industry.