Buses and motorcoaches have been around since the 1820s. The first local bus service was developed by the British and used by the 1830s, and today motorcoaches take the world for 751,000,000 trips every year. They stimulate the economy wherever they go, generating an average of $11,660 for a local economy in meals, lodging, and other spending. They can be a great way to travel, and if you’re considering whether or not to rent a bus, here are five things to bear in mind:
- Settle on a destination and the number of people going as early as possible. When you first get the idea for your trip, you’ll likely have a route in mind. But you’ll be very surprised at how easily routes and destinations get changed once you get a big group of people together. Everyone will have a different idea about where to stop and how to get there, so nail that down before you look into where and from whom to rent a bus. You also want to know for sure how many people are going, because that will determine the size of your charter rental. Get a firm headcount and nail down dates and times. Don’t be afraid to ask for a small deposit from everyone who says they want to go, to discourage too many people from backing out at the last minute and putting your plans into chaos.
- Think about what amenities you want and how important they are to you. Today’s modern charter buses can come equipped with wifi, bathrooms, air-conditioning, charging outlets, TVs and DVD players, lots of legroom, and varying amounts of overhead storage and baggage space. Depending on how many are coming, what the makeup of the group is, and how long your trip is, you’ll want to consider all these options when you rent a bus. Different amenities will affect costs in different ways, but they may also make the trip much more fun and relaxing for everyone.
- Find out what you can bring and plan in advance for any special needs. Most charter bus rentals won’t allow pets, for example, but service animals are likely to be different. You may have to show a doctor’s note about the service animal, though. You’ll also want to find out if you can bring food or not, how much luggage will be allowed per person, and if there are any restricted items you can’t take at all when you rent a bus. If someone in the group will need to transport a wheelchair or oxygen tank, or if most of the people won’t speak English well enough to communicate with the driver you’ll need to think about all that in advance, too.
- Know all the advantages of charter bus travel when you make your travel decisions. If you’re comparing driving cars, flying, train trips, and bus charters, know about the advantages that come when you rent a bus. Motorcoach travel is good for the environment, offering the greatest number of passenger miles to the gallon of any form of transport available. It’s also the safest form of travel and offers greater convenience than almost any other mode of transportation. There are five times as many terminals for motorcoach rentals to go in and out of than there are rail terminals or airports. And as for cost, for groups, it’s the most affordable way to travel.
Traveling by bus is comfortable, convenient, safe, and environmentally friendly. It’s a great way to keep your group together and make sure you all reach your destination at the same time after a comfortable trip. Look into coach bus transportation the next time you need to move a group.