As our urban growth boundaries continue to grow each year so does the need for public transportation. We are also living in a time where there has been a big push to reduce our carbon footprint. One solution to both of these issues is city bus services. Simply put, buses don't run without drivers and this is a profession that is expected to see continued growth in the years to come. Every state will vary slightly in the requirements to drive a city bus so you will be better off checking with your local city on the specific requirements.
What you can expect is an age requirement to be a bus driver. Most states will require you to be at least 21 years of age. Some states may have lower age requirements while others may be require a minimum of 25 years of age. A commercial driver license (CDL) will be required which can be obtained through some local college courses or a CDL Training School. Education requirements will most likely be similar to most CDL positions in that a High School diploma should be adequate. Most city bus driver jobs will include a criminal background check, inspection of your driving record and a hearing and vision check. Again, a quick check with your local City Hall should provide the specific details and skills required.
Once hired, you will generally be expected to participate in a training course to prepare you for the job. As a city bus drivers training it may include:
- Behind the wheel training to help adjust to the local routes and schedules
- Classroom learning on the local traffic and safety laws
- Training on how to provide proper customer service and meet company expectations
After your training course has been completed, your shift and routes will be assigned. Depending on the city you may be accompanied by a veteran bus driver on your first few routes. Buses tend to run early in the morning to get commuters to work and children off to school. They also run late into the evening to facilitate the evening commute and event transportation. A few trips around the block and you should have the driving portion of the job down pretty well.
To be a city bus driver there are some personal habits that will make you more successful in your driving job.
- Being punctual is important since you are delivering passages on a scheduled route
- Able to deal with passengers in a polite and professional manor
- Good communication and decision making skills
- Ability to cope under stressful situations such as traffic, weather conditions or even an uncooperative passenger
- Confidence to maintain the safety of the passengers you are transporting as well as the other drivers on the road
Depending on your community a city bus driver can make upwards of $40K a year. With a variety of shifts available you may be able to find the shift that works perfect with your household or lifestyle. To find jobs as a city bus driver check with your local City Hall for any openings available.
In addition you can also reach out to a job agency to find other bus driving opportunities. There are local tour buses that transport people to different events and vacation spots. School bus driver jobs can be found by visiting your local school district website. There may be additional jobs requirements but there are also bus services that drive from coast to coast.