What does a bus or coach driver do?
Bus drivers travel along local routes, making scheduled stops along the way to pick up and drop off passengers. Duties would include:
- taking fares and giving tickets
- checking transport passes
- giving timetable or route information
- helping passengers who are having difficulty getting on or off the vehicle
This role may also work in community transport, which might involve driving schoolchildren, hospital patients and the elderly to their destinations.
A coach driver's duties would be similar to those on a bus, but the journeys would be longer. For example, this role might involve driving between cities, or driving people on day trips or holiday tours.
Other tasks would include:
- loading and unloading luggage
- checking tickets and passes
- making sure all passengers are back on board for the return journey, and after any scheduled stops
Drivers would also be responsible for keeping the coach clean, doing basic vehicle checks before taking the vehicle out, and reporting any incidents to inspectors back at the depot.
This role may involve driving to destinations overseas. This would involve extra duties, such as keeping passengers up-to-date with travel information and dealing with foreign authorities. For example, when going through border controls.
What do I need to do to become a bus or coach driver?
To become a bus or coach driver, you will need to complete training for a Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) licence and the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC Driver).
To start training with a company, you must hold a full EU driving licence and be aged at least 18. Some employers prefer to take on trainees who have held their driving licence for one or two years or who are aged over 21. Check with them directly for details.
You could also train independently by taking private lessons through a local driving school. Once you have your licence, you could then contact bus and coach companies about vacancies.
You can apply for your provisional PCV licence through the GOV.UK website.
Where could I be working?
If you take holiday tours, you could be away from home for several days at a time.