California Occupational Guides

Summary Guide  (Printer Friendly)
Detailed Guide   (Printer Friendly)
   Summary Report-Jump to: 
         Top of Page
         What Would I Do?
         Wages and Benefits
         Job Outlook
         How Do I Qualify?
         What Employers Say...
Job Search Tips

I want to: 
   Search by Topic
   Search by Keyword


Change Your Area:

Select your county from the list:

Change Occupation:

1. Enter a keyword and click the "GO!" button:

2. Select an occupation from the results listed
below and click the "Get Information" button.

Summary Guide for

Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity in California

May also be called: Bus Drivers; Bus Operators; Transit Bus Operators

Specialties within this occupation include: Charter Bus Drivers; Shuttle Bus Drivers

What Would I Do?

Bus Drivers operate diesel, compressed natural gas (CNG), or electric vehicles which provide transportation for people either within or between cities. They drive buses for local transit systems, intercity bus companies, and tour bus companies.

Work schedules vary among various types of Bus Drivers. They may work nights, weekends, and holidays and may be required to report for work on short notice. Drivers may experience stress from long hours of driving combined with factors such as bad weather, heavy traffic conditions, time schedule commitments, delays, and customer complaints.

Will This Job Fit Me?

The job of Bus Driver may appeal to those who enjoy occupations involving practical, hands-on problems and solutions, and do not involve a lot of paperwork.

What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?

The median wage in 2017 for Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity in California was $43,767 annually, or $21.04 hourly. The median is the point at which half of the workers earn more and half earn less.

Change to Hourly Wages
Annual Wages for 2017Low
(25th percentile)
(50th percentile)
(75th percentile)
Source: EDD/LMID Occupational Employment Statistics Survey, 2017 Wages do not reflect self-employment.
View Wages for All Areas

Bus Drivers may expect to receive health and life insurance, sick leave, vacation, and pension plans. As an additional benefit, free transit passes may be given to all employees and their dependents.

What is the Job Outlook?

Currently, public transportation is seen as an environmentally friendly alternative to driving. Many State and local governments have increased funding for public transportation. This trend is expected to continue and would lead to increased employment of Transit Bus Drivers.

How Do I Qualify?

Many employers prefer to hire individuals with a high school diploma (or equivalent) and a clean driving record. A written test may also be required to assess the applicant's ability to read and follow bus schedules. Completion of a company sponsored bus driver training program is usually required. The minimum age for a Bus Driver is 18 to drive within the State and at least 21 to drive a bus across State lines.

Finding a Job

Direct application to employers is one of the most effective job search methods. Jobs may also be found through classified advertisements in newspapers and online job boards. Online job opening systems include JobCentral at and CalJOBSSM at

To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).

Learn More About Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity