Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe has said the hiring of private buses by the Luas operators was an exceptional measure to cover the St Patrick’s Day tram strike.
He claimed it was a fall back to provide for the public holiday. Unions criticised the move.
Transdev which runs the trams said special services from its park and ride facilities will carry tens of thousands of people into the city centre.
Mr Donohoe told RTE it was imperative that more steps are taken to ensure that a future backup service is not needed. He also said workers were still engaged in talks.
Strikes are planned for St Patrick’s Day, when about a quarter of a million people are on the streets of the city centre, and again the Easter weekend March 26-27 – and two further weekends, April 2-3 and 23-24.
Transdev said it has hired buses to carry the tens of thousands of people who would normally use a tram to get into the city to see the annual parades.
The move will widely be seen as an attempt to break the strike but also stave off potential gridlock on streets around the city centre and ease massive demand for other public transport services.
The Red Line buses will go from Cheeverstown and the Red Cow to Wolfe Tone Quay beside the Croppies’ Acre Memorial Park and out of the city from Victoria Quay, between the entrance to the Guinness brewery and Heuston Station.
The Green Line will be served by buses from Carrickmines, Balally and Stillorgan to Adelaide Road between Charlemont Street and Richmond Street South and outbound from Hatch Street Upper.