There are currently an estimated 179,300 bus drivers in the United States. The bus driver job market is expected to grow by 9.0% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are bus drivers?

CareerExplorer rates bus drivers with a C employability rating, meaning this career should provide moderate employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 20,200 bus drivers. That number is based on 16,100 additional bus drivers, and the retirement of 4,100 existing bus drivers.

Are bus drivers in demand?

Demand for bus drivers is projected to remain relatively flat over the next decade. Most job opportunities in the field are expected to be created by drivers who retire. Aspiring drivers will encounter strong competition, particularly for higher paying positions with public transit authorities. In rapidly growing suburban areas, school bus driving jobs will likely account for the majority of openings, as these are typically part-time positions with high turnover and less stringent training requirements. This growth, however, may be tempered by limited school district budgets. Employment prospects for intercity motor coach drivers will depend on tourism levels; seasonal and charter requirements; increasing popularity of train travel; and fluctuations in the economy. Generally, bus drivers in the U.S. are high school graduates and need to hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and specific endorsements for the types of vehicles they operate. They must also meet state requirements of age and overall health; vision and hearing standards; and drug screening. Those who have clean driving records and who are willing to work a part-time or irregular schedule will be in most demand and have the best job prospects. Patience and customer service skills are also highly valued assets for bus drivers. Opportunities for promotion in the field are limited, but experienced drivers may become supervisors, dispatchers, or driving instructors.

What’s the supply of bus drivers?

The bus driver industry is concentrated in California, New York, Texas

Bus Driver job market by state

State Name Employed Bus Drivers
California 23,350
New York 21,830
Texas 12,420
Florida 11,590
Illinois 7,990
New Jersey 7,350
Ohio 6,390
Washington 5,470
Pennsylvania 5,320
Maryland 5,310
Virginia 5,150
Michigan 5,090
Massachusetts 4,990
Minnesota 3,880
North Carolina 3,870
Arizona 3,660
Georgia 3,660
Colorado 3,380
Oregon 2,790
Missouri 2,780
Nevada 2,740
Tennessee 2,560
Hawaii 2,320
Wisconsin 2,080
Kentucky 1,870
Indiana 1,830
Iowa 1,750
Connecticut 1,550
Alabama 1,310
Louisiana 1,110
Utah 960
Oklahoma 940
Puerto Rico 870
Nebraska 840
South Carolina 830
New Mexico 740
Mississippi 700
Kansas 610
West Virginia 600
Idaho 590
Montana 560
Vermont 520
Maine 400
District of Columbia 390
Delaware 390
Alaska 390
Arkansas 310
South Dakota 290
New Hampshire 280
Wyoming 210
Guam 170
North Dakota 140
Rhode Island 100