Bus Operator Salary
Bus Operators in the United States take home approximately $17.87 per hour on average. Geography is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by the specific employer and tenure. Bus Operators who participated in the survey are largely men, dominating at 61 percent. The majority of workers are highly satisfied with their job. A strong majority enjoy medical while a fair number get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a majority.
Job Description for Bus Operator
A bus operator is the person who drives and operates buses and shuttles, typically for local area transit and transportation services and companies. Bus operators typically work regular routes but must be familiar with the areas they drive and the regular stops along them. Additionally, bus operators must be well-trained in safe driving, as well as general safety and care for the passengers they pick up and drop off.Read More...
Most bus operators work for transit companies either licensed to or operated by local governments and jurisdictions. The operator typically will undergo training, not only to learn to safely drive the specific vehicles he or she will be assigned to, but also to recognize any problems with the operation of the bus itself. The bus driver will be expected to report any problems immediately, as equipment breakdowns can create huge scheduling problems for shuttles and regular service lines.
To work as a bus operator, a person must typically possess a variety of specialized drivers licenses that can be earned either through training programs offered by transit companies or separate, dedicated commercial driving schools. Bus operators also undergo on-the-job training and will usually be expected to work long shifts behind the wheel. Bus operators typically work shifts that cover weekends, holidays, and nights.
Bus Operator Tasks
- Drive the bus and various passengers over specified routes according to specified time schedules.
- Read time schedules, street signs, traffic signs, head signs, bus passes and instructions.
- Maintain good relations with general public, announce stops, direct and control passengers.
- Operate the bus skillfully and safely, answer questions regarding service, routes and fares.
Bus Driver Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Bus Operator
Bus Operators fill the offices of leading firms MV Transportation, Inc., Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Transdev, First Group, and First Transit, Inc. Those at Metropolitan Transportation Authority can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $53K.
Pay by Experience Level for Bus Operator
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Bus Operators do not generally earn higher incomes from more experience in the field. The average beginner in this position makes around $36K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $43K. For Bus Operators, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $47K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $52K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.
Pay Difference by Location
New York is home to an above-average pay rate for Bus Operators, 51 percent higher than the national average. Bus Operators will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+41 percent) and Philadelphia (+30 percent). Bus Operators' salaries are heavily influenced by location — Bus Operators in Buffalo bring in salaries that are 28 percent lower than the national average. Not at the bottom but still paying below the median are employers in Los Angeles and Denver (16 percent lower and 13 percent lower, respectively).