Five Things You Should Know Before Riding a Charter Bus

Some Advice from a Professional Bus Accident Attorney

Chartering a bus is a great way to get to your destination. First of all, it is substantially cheaper than flying a plane or even driving yourself. Add all the expenses you will spend on gas if you are traveling a long distance and you will see that a bus is an amazing way to save money. Another advantage is that you do not need to drive yourself and concentrate on the road. You can relax in a comfortable seat and watch a movie, read a book, or just take a nap.

But before riding a charter bus, you need to make sure you know the following things. Otherwise, your ride might be not only too expensive and uncomfortable, but also dangerous.

How to save money

When you go online and google a ticket for a charter bus, most of the websites first found in the search results will be national brokers or bus networks. It is not a good idea to buy tickets from them because they add, on average, a service fee of 25 percent to the original cost of your trip. What you should do instead is verify if a company actually owns buses or just acts as a middleman, reselling tickets. You can easily do it at the Federal Motor Coach Safety Administration’s SAFER Company Snapshot.

Bus industry details

There are about 3,200 local and regional bus companies in the United States. However, there are not any national services that own charter buses. For example, Greyhound, which is popular in many areas, charters in just 15 markets. There are also 450 American bus carriers who are Department of Defense Certified.

If you fly often, you are used to websites that provide multiple instant quotes and ticket availability. Those websites are very convenient, but there are no such tools in the bus industry. If you want to get the lowest quotes, the best thing you can do is contact individually each bus company you’re interested in. Also, unlike with planes, bus ticket prices do not usually rise when the travel date draws nearer or when availability is low.

How to be safe

While bus crashes are quite rare in the United States, sometimes they happen. For example, there were 223 fatal bus crashes in 2014, along with 11,000 injury accidents. While these numbers may seem huge, it is much less than the fatality or injury rate resulting from regular car accidents. So, in most cases, you can feel safe riding a bus.

However, if you want to ensure your particular charter bus is safe to ride, you can check the bus company’s crash statistics. Use the Passenger Carrier Safety Database on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s website. They also have a free mobile app called SaferBus.

What to do in case of an accident

If you become a victim in a bus crash, it is better to know what to do beforehand. First of all, you need to get medical treatment and help the other passengers if you can. Then you will have to think about making a compensation claim. Bus accidents are very complex, so it is ideal to have a trusted and experienced bus accident attorney who can help you. If you do not know one, call Wilshire Law Firm and get the services of one best bus accident attorney in California.

How to entertain yourself

You have to think what you will do on a bus before you actually go on board. You will spend quite a few hours riding. So, take a few things that will be very useful, such as a book or a gadget with a charger, a warm hoodie or a blanket, tissues and wet wipes, snacks, water, a travel pillow, and earplugs with an eye mask.Have a fun ride!

Last Updated: 03-24-2017