Many people look to the bus as a more affordable mode of transport compared with driving a personal car or flying. In recent days, there have been a growing number of bus companies seeking to make handsome profits from a growing population looking for affordable transportation. Therefore, getting cheap bus tickets is not guaranteed. However, with an understanding of how bus ticketing works and some bit of shopping, you can land yourself the cheapest tickets in town. Furthermore, buying a bus pass can allow you to take unlimited trips or multiple pre-purchased trips within a stipulated period. Depending on the bus company and how often you use the pass, you stand to benefit from great discounts. The factors that often affect bus prices include:
· Fuel prices & insurance
Fuel prices directly affect bus prices. Therefore, any time fuel prices rise or fall, fares on the bus ticket change to reflect these fluctuations. Companies are required by law to be insured, with these rates varying significantly across different states. Furthermore, insurance rates change over time. When these rates go up, bus companies opt to capture the differences in their fares.
· Bus size & features
Larger buses charge lower bus fares because they can accommodate more people at any given time, although they utilize more fuel. Furthermore, the number of bus features, including special seating, onboard electronics and bathrooms can affect bus prices. Standard buses normally have basic features and thus cost less, while luxury buses have many features. Therefore, you will be expected to pay more when you choose to travel in a luxury bus because of the high quality of services you will be receiving. Moreover, maintaining a luxury bus is more costly. Hence, bus companies cover their costs by charging higher prices.
· Distance to travel
One of the most important factors that affect bus fares is the distance the bus is scheduled to travel. Bus companies take into consideration the number of kilometers or miles to be travelled and hours on the road. Typically, companies charge higher fares for long distances than short trips because longer distances consume more fuel. Furthermore, long distance travel means 2 drivers will be required, which translates to an additional cost to the company.
It is not uncommon for companies to charge different fares over the same distance, but in different regions, towns or cities. Bus companies realize regions with more middle and higher income people can afford to spend a little more on their tickets. Therefore, they try to capitalize on their better purchasing power to charge higher prices than they otherwise charge in low-income regions.