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3 Things Your Bus Driver Wishes You Knew On Your School Trip

Sarah Hessasta
Posted by Sarah Hessasta on July 23, 2020

3 Things Your Bus Driver Wishes You Knew On Your School Trip

The unsung heroes of a class trip are always our bus drivers. Bus drivers have a strenuous job. They often work long, extended hours without routine rest or a proper sit-down meal. Of course, we are obligated to abide by FMCSA rules and regulations, but that should not undermine the physical toll the job can have on a driver.

As GO Leaders, we are trained to serve as a support system for our drivers. We amplify their voices and mediate any conflicts between the passengers (you) and them. Over the years, we have become pretty proactive with our requests of travelers so that our bus drivers do not need to worry. 

Here are a few.

  • Stay In Your Seat

  • Bathrooms Should Be Reserved for Emergencies Only

  • Motorcoach Storage Access is Limited

Stay in Your Seat

The safest place on the motorcoach is in your seat. The driver needs to remain focused while driving, we know this. The driver can easily become distracted if passengers are running around the bus, hopping from seat to seat, row to row. Also, in the instance the motorcoach comes to an abrupt halt, we don’t want any passengers flying forward or backward, injuring themselves. Again, the safest place for any passenger on the motorcoach, is in your seat! 

Bathrooms Should Be Reserved for Emergencies Only

There are bathrooms in the rear of most motorcoaches for the convenience of using the facilities without a pit stop, however, they need to be reserved for emergencies only. The driver is responsible for the motorcoach for the entirety of its trip. If the motorcoach is in use all day long without a multi-hour break, the driver cannot detour to a local station to drain the toilet. It’s a much larger ordeal. If the bathroom is utilized too often, it can develop a stench that you may be stuck with for the rest of the trip. It’s best to wait for the nearest rest stop or attraction visit to use the bathroom. 

Motorcoach Storage Access is Limited

The undercarriage of the motorcoach is used for storage. It is the dropbox where everyone’s luggage is stored. Oftentimes, we have travelers who stash items in the undercarriage under the assumption that it can be accessed periodically throughout the day. Unfortunately, most cities penalize motorcoaches for opening the storage unit when not parked in authorized unloading zones. The motorcoach undercarriage should not be accessed unless at a rest stop, the hotel, or the point of origin of the trip. Any items you expect to need throughout the day should be kept by the seating area above (a.k.a. Where you, the passenger, are sitting). 


Did you find any of this information surprising?  

Sometimes we have repeat drivers. We love greeting a familiar face in the industry because it allows for a more supportive work environment. We also try to integrate our relationships with our bus drivers, with our students. We want to ensure our drivers are being respected and appreciated at all times, and it comforts students when they can identify an unfamiliar face by name. 

Some of my most treasured moments from the tour involve harmonious bonding moments with my tour group and the driver. It’s a beautiful thing to witness. We have had some of the most professional, personable, hilarious, and adaptable drivers who connect so well with the kids. We value those connections when assessing the success of a trip.  


The more you know…! 


By: Sarah Hessasta 

Topics: student travel, Motorcoach Travel

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