Vehicle and Crew Scheduling for Flexible Bus Transportation Systems

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bus, place - urban, operations - scheduling, ridership - drivers, planning - methods


Vehicle Scheduling Problem, Crew Scheduling Problem, Flexible Bus Transportation System, Mixed-Integer Problem, Variable Neighborhood Search Algorithm


This article deals with the Flexible Vehicle and Crew Scheduling Problem faced by urban bus transport agencies that have to assign their resources (vehicles and drivers) to cover timetables generated at the tactical level. We aim for high quality and fast to compute solutions for this problem, considering vehicle characteristics, driver qualifications requirements for each line, and labor regulations, that is, drivers have a limited duty length, mandatory rests, a restricted consecutive driving time, and a limited extra working hours. Moreover, the starting time of the drivers shift is not fixed a priori and the breaks can be allocated anywhere in the schedule as long as labor regulations are satisfied. Thus, flexibility is required to compute drivers duty but it is also needed in scenarios where the available number of drivers and vehicles changes almost everyday. We propose a mixed-integer linear programming model and a variable neighborhood search for this problem and show the efficiency of our approaches with a large set of instances.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


Transportation Research Part B Home Page: