PERSBERICHT 25-01-2024  De disbalans tussen vraag en aanbod in het leerlingenvervoer wordt steeds groter, waarschuwt de landelijke brancheorganisatie KNV Zorgvervoer en Taxi tijdens de Dag van het Leerlingenvervoer.

Voorzitter Bertho Eckhardt dringt er bij betrokken partijen op aan nù met elkaar om tafel te gaan, om te voorkomen dat zich in het schooljaar 2024-2025 opnieuw incidenten voordoen: “We hebben te maken met een nieuwe werkelijkheid. Opdrachtgevers en vervoerders, durf voor nieuwe oplossingen te kiezen.”

Steeds meer met minder

KNV Zorgvervoer en Taxi waarschuwt al enige tijd voor een onhoudbare situatie in het leerlingenvervoer, waarin steeds meer met minder moet. De branchevereniging ziet al jaren een toename van de vraag naar leerlingenvervoer. Vervoerders raakten sinds de coronaperiode echter meer en meer in de greep van chauffeurstekorten. Onlangs gaf een kwart van het totaal aantal KNV leden in een enquête van de branchevereniging aan samen meer dan 1600 vacatures open te hebben staan. Intussen worden vervoersvraag en planning complexer: er wordt meer maatwerk geëist. Daar komt de toenemende verkeersdrukte nog bij, die voor extra vertragingen zorgt.

Met lef en realiteitszin

Bertho Eckhardt: “Het gaat om een zeer kwetsbare doelgroep. Laat voorop staan dat elk incident er één teveel is. Juist daarom is het nodig om nu, met lef en realiteitszin, nieuwe keuzes te maken. Voor echte, structurele oplossingen zal kritisch naar het huidige systeem gekeken moeten worden. We moeten vraag en aanbod weer in evenwicht zien te brengen.” In een brandbrief die KNV Zorgvervoer en Taxi in oktober vorig jaar stuurde aan alle gemeenten – de opdrachtgevers van leerlingenvervoer – draagt de branchevereniging een reeks praktische oplossingen aan. Een daarvan: maak het vervoer minder complex. Want hoe meer mutaties en maatwerk, hoe groter de kans op fouten. Ook met het schuiven van de aanvangstijden van scholen, waardoor ritten na elkaar kunnen worden gereden, kan veel gewonnen worden.

Bevlogen en oplossingsgerichte branche

Bertho Eckhardt: “Wij zien dat vervoerders momenteel enorm investeren in het vinden van nieuw personeel. Door met roosters en uren te schuiven proberen ze het probleem van onregelmatig werk op te lossen. Wat me altijd weer raakt bij de leerlingenvervoerders die ik tegenkom is hun grote betrokkenheid. Ook de chauffeurs hebben een groot verantwoordelijkheidsgevoel voor ‘hun’ kinderen. Laten we vooral niet vergeten dat er dankzij deze bevlogenheid iedere dag ook heel veel goed gaat.”

2022 was, again, an eventful year. This year we had less to do with corona, although the after-effects are still palpable. In particular, the further increase in the staff shortage, the high inflation and the sharp rise in costs had a major impact on the companies. Negotiations on a new Collective Labor Agreement for Healthcare Transport and Taxi have also never been surrounded by so many actions from the trade unions. A lot has come your way as an entrepreneur. We would like to look back with you.


Corona, driver shortages and sharply increased costs

Get started 2022, the sector still had to deal with restrictive measures in transport due to corona, but fortunately these were lifted at the end of March. No additional measures have subsequently been found to be necessary, and it is more up to the sectors themselves to take appropriate measures if necessary. This has led to one new protocol for all modes of transport and provides for four scenarios in which the coronavirus could occur: from very light (scenario 1, comparable to a cold/flu) to very severe (scenario 4, socially disruptive/great pressure).

However, other problems arose that made it quite a challenge to be able to continue all transport this year, especially due to the increasing shortage of personnel. Entrepreneurs have spent a lot of time and money on recruiting new staff this year. In SFM context, the recruitment campaign ‘Rout? Become a driver !’ started. As KNV, we have paid the necessary attention to the subject, in discussions with clients and governments and through our input in the round table discussion in the House of Representatives. We have also achieved that a counter for employers has been set up at the CBR. This desk must offer employers tailor-made solutions if LWT drivers cannot take exams in time.

The outbreak of war in Ukraine meant that inflation and costs continued to rise, in particular the fuel costs. At the request of KNV, SFM consultancy firm Panteia had already calculated what additional impact this would have on the NEA development index, which is historically high for 2022. In our discussions with clients, we continue to propagate the usefulness and necessity of applying the NEA index.


Care transport

This year a quality framework for seated patient transport was drawn up, of which KNV is one of the signatories. Agreements have been made about the quality of patient transport. It must provide a good basis for negotiations between market parties, taking into account price, efficiency and quality. With the signing, all parties commit themselves to jointly ensure that this is guaranteed.

In 2022 the lying care transport foundation was established. The aim of the foundation is ‘to promote the quality of recumbent care transport without medical grounds, as well as its regulation’ . The foundation is an initiative of KNV and stems from the wish expressed by health insurers to guarantee the quality of recumbent care transport by means of a quality framework.


Consumer taxi transport

KNV is and will remain active in various large cities and municipalities, which have their own taxi regulation for taxis active in the consumer market. Amsterdam continues to receive special attention, where the municipality wants to move towards a different policy, and where KNV has some reservations. The efforts of KNV therefore remain useful and necessary, because the image of the entry-level market is often decisive for our entire sector.

2022 Sustainability

In the long term (at the latest 2030) all healthcare and taxi transport must be zero emission (ZE). KNV signed two covenants for this, on the one hand for healthcare transport and on the other hand for consumer taxi transport. It is important that an exception is made for care transport and in particular for wheelchair buses, if a municipality in 2025 is already working with a ZE zone taxi want to. Adequate charging infrastructure, possible subsidy for the purchase of a ZE taxi, the shared use of public transport lanes and a level playing field between the entry and delivery market are also topics of discussion with, among others, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management and municipalities.



Already some For years, efforts have been made to develop a successor to the current BCT. KNV is in favor of this and is closely involved in the new BCT variant. The aim is to ensure that the new BCT is practical, easy to work with, does not impose unnecessary costs on entrepreneurs and, above all, that ILT can properly monitor compliance with working and rest times. The latter is currently rather lacking.

At EU level, in 2022 talked about making a guideline for platform workers. The set-up of that directive and the discussions about it in the European Parliament made it clear that regular taxi centers and TTOs (approved taxi organisations) could also be affected by this. Through joint efforts via the IRU and Taxi4SmartMobility, we have succeeded in keeping the taxi sector outside the scope of this for the time being. The wording is not yet ideal, but it does allow consultation at national level.

Partly due to the continuing capacity problems at the CBR, as a result of which LWT drivers cannot take their exams within 4 months. KNV has urged the ministry to extend the LWT term. The ministry wants to extend the term to 6 months and is now working on amending the regulations.

Finally, we achieved that from now on an employer will be informed if something with validity of a driver card is in hand. As far as KNV is concerned, this should certainly happen, but that is difficult due to privacy rules. ILT will now inform an employer if it is known when an official report is drawn up.

2022 Social Affairs

After a number of difficult rounds of negotiations in which the proposals of KNV and those of trade unions FNV and CNV were far apart, the members voted of CNV nevertheless accepted the final offer of KNV. With this, a new collective agreement was reached, so that employees can look forward to a wage increase of 8% as of 1 January 2022. We are currently working hard on the elaboration of the agreement in a new Cao text.


Other work of our association

In addition to the above, the association office answered various member questions, you received weekly emails, we organized webinars about current themes (such as the BCT, paid time and MaaS), we were present during the Taxi Expo and the Contract Transport Congress, the office provided support in employment law matters and there were lobby activities behind the scenes to represent your interests (also at EU level). . And there was regular contact with (trade) press.

Read the complete Annual overview 2022 of KNV Zorgtransport en Taxi (PDF)

October 6th is the day. Then the Dutch taxi industry will gather at the Taxi Expo 09. Taxi Expo is the meeting place for the taxi world – from client to carrier to vehicle manufacturer.

The industry will discuss the future with each other, sharing the latest insights. But it is also a day of relaxation and conviviality.

Have a conversation with suppliers and service providers about innovations and developments, or just to drink a good cup of coffee together.

National Contract Transport Congress: This year’s congress on target group transport is about optimizing budgets, voluntary transport initiatives and the integration with public transport.

On the exhibition floor: Participate in business workshops that concern the sector – such as the latest state of affairs in employment law and promoting the employability of staff. Join a tour of the exhibition floor or go speed dating on the network square.

Taking up with colleagues: Every year, Taxi Expo is the meeting place for taxi entrepreneurs with and without staff, clients, suppliers and other parties involved in the taxi world. Make one-on-one appointments via the network tool.

The Taxi Innovation Prize: Continuing to innovate is important. That is why the Taxi Innovation Prize is awarded every year during the Taxi Expo.

KNV is a partner of the Taxi Expo. Taxi Expo is organized by ProMedia.

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KNV chairman Bertho Eckhardt explains what KNV Zorgtransport en Taxi stands for and what the industry association stands for in 2000 the priorities are.

What are you for trade association?

‘Our members are companies that provide passenger transport with a blue license plate . 20 until 25 percent of them serve the consumer market – the rest of the members are in care and student transport. These are often large orders that run through the national government or local authorities. Or through health insurers, such as patient transport with an indication, for example for kidney dialysis. We have 2000 members, totaling over 000.000 vehicles. There used to be more, but there have been a lot of mergers and acquisitions in the sector in recent years. The degree of organization is relatively low in the consumer taxi market – there are many self-employed people without employees. Taxi centers are affiliated with us.’

What are you doing right now?

‘With the preparation of the sector plans COVID-19. Our goal is to continue to transport as many target groups as possible, so that these people continue to be part of society in times of corona. But we must be able to do this in an effective and profitable way. Suppose that a tender is based on seven people per van. If that becomes three or four, the carriers will run at a loss.

It is not convenient that transport is not formally part of the care chain. It is the same world, but not in terms of laws and regulations. Healthcare falls under the Ministry of VWS, transport under that of I&W. This requires a lot of coordination, while an integrated approach would be better. Patient associations would also like this.’

What other current issues are involved?

‘Like almost all sectors, our members are facing serious staff shortages. Because there are too few drivers, some children in student transport arrive too early or too late at school. There are many part-timers. Employers do of course ask them to work more hours, but then they often do not benefit net. The government must do something about this, but it will take time. In the meantime, it would help if drivers in training could already get started. Our proposal is to extend the exemption from four months to one year. People can then be deployed sooner.

Another point is the metropolitan policy on sustainable transport. Amsterdam is aiming for zero emissions in 2025. That ambition is fine, but we have to be realistic.

Some entrepreneurs have just invested in their fleet. That is why we are discussing a realistic transitional period with the aldermen.

We also want the Passenger Transport Act 250 modernize. This law covers, among other things, taxi permits and driving and rest times. We advocate seeing the boarding and order market as one, so that calling taxis and traditional taxis must meet the same requirements. Now, for example, one taxi may park to wait for a customer and the other must continue to drive around. That is inexplicable, not even from a sustainability point of view.’

How do you see the future of the trade association?

‘As a trade association you have to connect with the zeitgeist and identify trends. That requires a certain flexibility. Digitization is a game changer in our industry: think of the call taxis and platforms. We have nothing against that in itself, but it is important to ensure a level playing field.

It is important to see opportunities. For example, pilots are underway to link small-scale passenger transport to public transport in sparsely populated areas. After all, the vans that drive around are not always full. That is ‘mobility as a service’, where people can order and pay for transport via an app.’

A more extensive version of this interview appeared on 18 July 2025 in the joint news section ‘Branche associations speak’ of VNO-NCW and MKB-Nederland.