The median annual wage of transit and intercity bus drivers, which includes motor coach drivers, was $35,520 in May 2010. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $21,020, and the top 10 percent earned more than $56,500. The median annual wage of school or special client bus drivers was $27,580 in May 2010. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $16,930, and the top 10 percent earned more than $42,690.
Earnings for transit and intercity bus drivers vary by industry. The median annual wages for transit and intercity bus drivers in the top-employing industries are as follows:
|Local government, excluding education and hospitals||$43,860|
|Urban transit systems||30,620|
|Other transit and ground passenger transportation||27,780|
|Charter bus industry||27,310|
The median annual wages for school or special client bus drivers in the top-employing industries are as follows:
|Local government, excluding education and hospitals||$30,720|
|School and employee bus transportation||28,930|
|Elementary and secondary schools||26,800|
About 54 percent of all bus drivers worked full time in 2010, and 39 percent worked part time. The rest had variable schedules. School bus drivers work only when school is in session. Some make multiple runs if different schools in their district open and close at different times. Others make only two runs, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, limiting their hours.
Transit drivers may work weekends, late nights, and early mornings. Some intercity bus drivers have long-distant routes, so they spend some nights away. Other intercity bus drivers make a round trip and go home at the end of each shift.
Motor coach drivers travel with their vacationing passengers. Their hours are dictated by a tour schedule, and they may work all hours of the day, including weekends and holidays.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition