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Why The Bus?

Updated on October 15, 2012

No bus? Too bad, perhaps someday soon.

Convenience vs. Savings is not the whole equation.
Convenience vs. Savings is not the whole equation. | Source

How does riding the bus compare to riding your own steed?

Now there are all kinds of regular transportation: cars, trucks, busses, motorcycles, scooters, planes, helicopters, trains, trolleys, even snowboards (in season, of course!)

I don't have a helicopter. Lots of folks are lucky to have a bicycle (not mentioned above.) So I have chosen to compare using public transportation, namely busses, to driving a car back and forth to work, school, and other semi-convenient locations.

Here's how it looks to me:

Automobile Owners' Expenses:

Purchase Price

Interest Payments

Property Taxes



Inspections & emissions tests



Major and minor repairs

Parking fees



Oil & Lubrication



Road Service


Bus Riders' Expenses:

Paying the fares


Now I could stop at this point, add that busses, compared to the number of cars that would be required to carry an average busload, are environmentally friendly, air conditioned or heated (once you catch it) and allow you to meet a wide variety of people you might never meet otherwise. What's more, you don't have to keep your eyes on the road, and you may catch a few winks (of both kinds.) But I should add that some busses have discounted passes, most have subsidized fee schedules your taxes have already helped pay for, and seniors and handicapped riders often get special considerations.

As a senior passenger, my bus fare is $1.15 for unlimited rides during any two-hour period, or $39.25 for a whole month. The regular adult rate is $2.35 for a two-hour period, or $5.75 for an all-day, unlimited bus pass, and monthly passes are also available. Some 51,000 local university students have passes provided for unlimited bus rides through an arrangement between the local transit authority and the two local universities.

Schedules are readily available. Toll free information numbers put scheduling assistance at the riders' convenience.

But, life without a car? You may still have one you use for "car needed occasions," but for the two years I have spent riding the busses, I have saved enough that when a bus and a bicycle do not meet the needs, I can rent a late model, clean, serviced car to meet those needs and still have money I have saved!

If you can do so, try it. You will be pleasantly surprised. After all, if the bus doesn't take you right to the front door of the place you are going, a few steps of "shank's mare" will entitle you to tell your spouse that "Yes, honey, I did exercise today!"

And how much was that you say you are paying for a single gallon of gas these days?


© 2012 Demas W. Jasper All rights reserved.

There are only two sides to this question, namely "Are you going South?

southbound | Source

Or North? (East, West, and in between are served, too!)

Northbound.  "Transfer, please."
Northbound. "Transfer, please." | Source


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    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 3 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Ibidii - Thanks for the comment. I will have to find the "Anonymous" story written abut a blind woman and a bus driver. When I locate it I will try to send it to you. It is touching and inspiring.

      Eiddwen - Does he ever tell you his meter is running?

    • profile image

      Ibidii 3 years ago

      I have used the bus most of my life when I could not drive. I was lucky to drive for the few years that I could. With my vision loss I had to use the bus. When it came time for me to use a wheelchair I was happy that the bus system had wheelchair ramps and lifts. I had only a few drivers who were complaining that it took too long to load and lock me. I had a few groans from passengers as well because of the time it took, A good driver can load and lock you in less than 5 minutes. I was able to do quite well with the power wheelchair. The bus pass per month was very reasonable as opposed to a fully equipped van to handle a wheelchair. I could not drive the van but others could for me. They are very expensive and all the things that you mention are costly as well. It made more sense for me to use the public transportation. The trains were good too that I used in Utah. I did not use the wheelchair ramp on Amtrak or the Greyhound bus or other mass group busses, but they do have accomodations. Well done on this hub!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      I don't drive so to get in to town which is nearly four miles away so when my partner is at work I catch the bus.

      Some moan about the inconvenient time table for these buses but I see nothing wrong with them.

      I work my my day around them.

      Thanks for sharing and if you'd like to ask what my partner does for a job ;I'll tell you that he is a Taxi driver!!!.


    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 5 years ago from The Caribbean

      You really have it figured out, Perspycacious. Thanks for showing us that it really works. You may just have started a "Why the Bus" movement.

    • Rosemay50 profile image

      Rosemary Sadler 5 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

      It reads much better now and I love the photos too.

      I used to have the same problem pasting from 'Word' into a text box on HP, where it would underline everything. I usually had to go back in and just highlight everything and then click on the 'underline' button to get rid of it. It was a pain in the but but it seems to have improved of late.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 5 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      btrbell: Admittedly a single parent who is working and has children in school, may need a car for emergencies, as may a parent at home during school hours. But for many Americans the expense of riding to and fro in their own car might be worth reconsidering during these hard times of job uncertainties, high gasoline prices, and budgets stretched to the limit. Add another comment, if you give up car ownership for public transportation. I think you will find it, for the most part, a smart decision.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 5 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      aviannovice: It didn't take you and me too much thought to realize that there are some very real advantages to taking public transport. I have added the two bus photos which I took today, as well as a link to a previous Hub on the lack of seatbelts on most of the nation's school busses.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 5 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Rosemay50 : I have retyped much of the underlined portions. Lately I have had a problem with inserts which are not underlined in my edited copy, but show up underlined in the version that is published. As the King of Siam was wont to say "'Tis a puzzlement!", not to mention a nuisance! I'm glad you saw some value in this Hub.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Interesting and timely. With the economy as it stands, we have considered giving up our car. Thank you for the info.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      We have limited bus service, and I have thought of the car renta, if needed, and came up with the same conclusion. I like the fact that I don't have the car owner's expenses anymore.

    • Rosemay50 profile image

      Rosemary Sadler 5 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

      This is great advice and most places have a good bus service and yes we can save heaps using public transport.

      Can I just say though that it was hard to read being all underlined, maybe you can remove that.