Bus and Coach Drivers
Bus and Coach Drivers drive buses and coaches to transport passengers over established and special routes.
stopping at set locations to pick up and set down passengers
opening and closing doors before and after passengers board or alight
controlling lighting, heating and ventilation on buses
collecting fares and giving change and tickets, and monitoring electronic entry
advising passengers on destinations
maintaining conduct of passengers
may use public address systems to provide information and tour commentaries for passengers
may assist coach passengers with baggage and accommodation bookings
may maintain, service and clean coaches
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Informal or on-the-job
JSA produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. The latest data are for the five years from November 2021 to November 2026. Over this period, the number of workers:
- is expected to grow strongly
- is likely to reach 53,300 by 2026.
Source: Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.
Notes: The number employed includes people who work in this occupation as their main job. People who work in more than one job are counted against the occupation they work the most hours in.
Employment projections figures are rounded to the nearest 100. Calculations based on these rounded figures may result in differences to the numbers that are displayed on this page. Employment projections data (including occupations) can be downloaded from the Employment Projections page.
Number of Workers
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.
Earnings and hours
Around 60% of people employed as Bus and Coach Drivers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 6 percentage points below the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 44 hours per week in their main job. This is the same as the all jobs average.
Median full-time earnings are $1,597 per week, this is similar to the all jobs median ($1,593):
- 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,298
- 1 in 4 earn more than $1,846
Median hourly earnings are $37, this is lower than the all jobs median ($41 per hour).
Sources: Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.
Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)
|Earnings||Bus and Coach Drivers||All Jobs Average|
Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
Most Bus and Coach Drivers work in the Transport, postal and warehousing industry. They are also employed in industries like:
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2021.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Bus and Coach Drivers||All Jobs Average|
Around 45% of Bus and Coach Drivers live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
New South Wales has a large share of employment relative to its population size.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Bus and Coach Drivers is 55 years. This is higher than the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 45 to 54 years.
Females make up 13% of the workforce. This is 35 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Bus and Coach Drivers||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||17.6||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
Formal qualifications are not essential to work as a Bus or Coach Driver. Although some workers have a certificate II or III in driving operations.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Transport and Logistics Training Package VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Bus and Coach Drivers||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||2.8||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||27.5||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Bus and Coach Drivers who can interact and provide good customer service and are well presented.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
45%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
39%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Looking for ways to help people.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Reading work related information.
Talking to others.
32%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
30%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
29%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.
Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
61%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
54%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
Describing land, sea, and air, including their physical characteristics, locations, how they work together, and the location of plant, animal, and human life.
35%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
35%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
34%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
32%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
27%Philosophy and theology
Philosophical systems and religions, including their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and impact on society.
26%Sociology and anthropology
Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
25%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
22%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
21%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
13%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Quickly move your hand, finger, or foot when a sound, light, picture or something else appears.
Quickly choose the right movement of the hand, foot, or other body part when there are two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures).
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
See details that are far away.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Change when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Communicate by speaking.
Do two or more things at the same time.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
Know where things are around you.
See things in glare or bright lighting.
Tell the difference between sounds.
Decide which thing is closer or further away from you, or decide how far away it is.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
77%Driving vehicles or equipment
Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
76%Working with the public
Greeting or serving customers, clients or guests, and public speaking or performing.
75%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
67%Communicating with the public
Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.
66%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
66%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
66%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
63%Helping and caring for others
Providing personal assistance, medical attention, or emotional support.
62%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
62%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
60%Negotiating and resolving conflicts
Handling complaints and disagreements, and negotiating with people.
59%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
58%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
56%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
56%Leading and encouraging a team
Encouraging and building trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
53%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
53%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
53%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
52%Estimating amounts, costs and resources
Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.
50%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
Interests and demands
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
99%In an enclosed vehicle or equipment
Work in a closed vehicle (e.g., car).
91%Physically close to people
Work physically close to other people.
91%Spend time sitting
Spend time sitting at work.
Work to strict deadlines.
90%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
89%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
87%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
86%Outdoors, exposed to weather
Work outdoors, exposed to the weather.
85%Contact with the public
Work with customers or the public.
83%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
81%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
81%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
81%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
80%Angry or unpleasant people
Deal with unpleasant, angry, or rude people.
78%Disease or infection
Be exposed to disease or infections.
77%Exposure to contaminants
Be exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours.
Talk with people face-to-face.
74%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
73%Health and safety of others
Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 53-3021.00 - Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity.
Links and downloads
Research and reports
The Skills Priority List provides a current labour market rating and a future demand rating for nearly 800 occupations nationally. Current labour market ratings are available for occupations at a state and territory level.
Occupation profiles data are available for download.
The Employment Projections are available for download.