Journal of Scheduling

, Volume 17, Issue 6, pp 621–629 | Cite as

A mixed-integer linear programming approach to the optimization of event-bus schedules: a scheduling application in the tourism sector

  • Gianluca Brandinu
  • Norbert Trautmann


This paper deals with “The Enchanted Journey,” which is a daily event tour booked by Bollywood-film fans. During the tour, the participants visit original sites of famous Bollywood films at various locations in Switzerland; moreover, the tour includes stops for lunch and shopping. Each day, up to five buses operate the tour. For operational reasons, however, two or more buses cannot stay at the same location simultaneously. Further operative constraints include time windows for all activities and precedence constraints between some activities. The planning problem is how to compute a feasible schedule for each bus. We implement a two-step hierarchical approach. In the first step, we minimize the total waiting time; in the second step, we minimize the total travel time of all buses. We present a basic formulation of this problem as a mixed-integer linear program. We enhance this basic formulation by symmetry-breaking constraints, which reduces the search space without loss of generality. We report on computational results obtained with the Gurobi Solver. Our numerical results show that all relevant problem instances can be solved using the basic formulation within reasonable CPU time, and that the symmetry-breaking constraints reduce that CPU time considerably.


Applications Tourism industry  Mixed-integer linear programming 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Business AdministrationUniversity of BernBernSwitzerland

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