Buy Needed Bus Tickets for Less

by Guest Contributor · 3 comments

If you are planning on riding the bus to save on your commuting costs, you have made a good choice. Many cities and states offer bus service along popular routes, and the costs are inevitably lower than driving on your own. Gas, insurance, wear and tear, and other intangibles add up quickly. Still, it helps to know a few tricks if you want to save even more.

Check for Passes

Passes are a way to save even more money on a bus fare. Commuter buses charge a remarkable range of fares, depending upon the distance traveled, the popularity of the route, and the amount of competition they have. For example, if you take a bus from northern NJ to NYC you might pay $3.20, but with a 10-ticket pass that drops to $27 and for a monthly pass $98. Assuming you commute an average of 20 days per month, your rides have dropped to about $2.45 per trip.

The advantage of riding in such a popular area is that there are many additional bus services, with some charging as little as $2 per ride. If you arrive at the bus stop at the right time, you don’t have to wait for a scheduled bus, and you save even more. Compared to the $8 toll to cross the bridges in a car, there is no reason not to ride the bus.

The same kind of savings can be found in Colorado where a new bus line has been created between Colorado Springs and Denver. A one way cash fare is $11, a 40 ride ticket is $330, making each ride only $8.25.

Take Advantage or Status

If you are a student, a senior, or disabled, there are special fares for you. The same is true for children, but they generally need to be accompanied. How much of a discount are we talking about? 50% or more. Keeping current ID, getting necessary paperwork, and making use of such perks will make bus travel even more reasonable.

Off Peak Hours

One of the best things about a flexible schedule is that you don’t need to commute during rush hour. The downside is that you may have a hard time finding carpooling partners. As long as you have bus service, you don’t have to worry.

Many buses charge less off peak. That means that if you can arrive at work after the rush hour is over and then put in your hours, you can take advantage of off peak rates.

Competition Helps Your Case

Not all bus travel is commuting related. Buses travel between cities, too, and they can be a good way to get to your destination if you don’t want to fly. When it comes to popular routes, once again, there will be more companies to choose from. These newer lines have incredible deals from time to time in order to boost their business. By shopping around you might be lucky enough to hit one of the occasional $1 fares.

Just like every other commodity, bus tickets can vary in price from day to day, from carrier to carrier and from place to place. Take the time to investigate your options, you’ll be glad you did.

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  • Sue says:

    I would love to use the local bus for commuting to work but, having to leave home forty minutes early and getting home two hours later is not a lot of incentive.

  • Check with your employer if they will contribute to the bus ticket. I think many big companies has a program.

    A bus pass doesn’t make sense for me because I only take public transport on the weekdays. A month pass cost more than tickets every weekdays.

  • Justin says:

    I examined switching to the city bus system here in Dallas when gas was around $4.15 here but due to the number of route changes and stops in our rail system my commute would have gone from about 45 minutes to (I kid you not) 3 hours. Paying for gas sucks but spending a cumulative 6 hours a day in transit just couldn’t justify the cost savings.

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