Tel: +353 42 9378188
Lo-Call: 1890 25 20 40
Email: info@matthews.ie

The Matthews Coach Hire story began in 1995 when Paddy Matthews purchased a second-hand 16-seat minibus (pictured right) which came with a driver and a
number of small runs.

Originally a truck driver, Paddy had been unable to work for six years due to a back problem and the couple needed a vehicle to transport their children and foster children. Eight years on, the Matthews fleet includes 34 coaches which carry 4,500 passengers every day, something which Paddy Matthews said he never expected. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think we would ever get to this level,” he said. “I had been a long-distance truck driver, but my back had given out on me and I was on disability,” he said. “Myself and Mary were fostering children, but the car we had wasn’t really fit to carry them around. The opportunity came up to buy a minibus, so we decided to go for it - we felt we could use the bus ourselves, and set up a little business doing school runs.” Soon, local football teams also began to use the service. “As we started to get more football runs, we realised we needed a bigger bus, so we bought a 24-seater. “At that stage, there were only three of us in the company – myself and Mary and the man who we’d bought the first bus off. He came with it when we bought it, and he’s still with us today.”

By 2004, the Matthews were operating a number of school buses for Bus Éireann, and had built up a fleet of around eight buses. But a desire to put their employees on a more stable footing prompted them to examine the possibility of running services along the M1. The securing of the licence was to be the blue touchpaper that lit the Matthews story.

The company recognised an opportunity to submit a route on the newly-opened M1 corridor and were granted a licence to operate an express service from Dundalk to Dublin via Drogheda in 2004. The fleet expanded and drivers were hired and trained from the outset that courtesy was to be king on Matthews coaches. An absence of a firm marketing plan meant that the routes built up slowly over five months from the service launch in May – with word of mouth on the customer service on offer being spread by a core base of pensioners.

The return of students to the market in September 2004 saw an instant uplift on the service – and pointed the way forward for the business. By 2007, the fleet had expanded to 24 vehicles, and the company continued their innovations into new routes such as Bettystown-Dublin and the 02 Arena. In 2008, the company suffered a major blow with the loss of the Government’s fuel rebate of 34 cent per litre. The company called on its greatest asset – its drivers – to pull out all the stops in the area of courtesy and customer service to meet a target of two extra customers per bus.

This was allied with two major innovations – the introduction of free wifi on all services, and a smart advertising campaign on the backs of the coaches, highlighting the savings in fuel and tolls of a week’s commuting on a Matthews coach. The result was an increase of between four and five passengers per service, and a standard of service that has become synonymous with Matthews Coach Hire.

 

Our Fleet

To view our fleet please click here >>

  

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