Bus or coach driver

Transport, distribution and logistics

Career outlook for bus or coach driver

UK Salary Ranges





Currently employed in Scotland


Salary information is provided by the "National Careers Service". "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures. Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

You would take people from one place to another whether that’s just a few streets, between towns and cities or on a holiday.

It’s a responsible job; passengers will rely on you to get them to the right place as safely as possible.

You might transport passengers on local, national or overseas journeys.

You would travel along planned routes, making scheduled stops along the way to pick up and drop off passengers.

You would:

  • Take fares and give tickets
  • Check transport passes
  • Give timetable or route information
  • Help passengers who are having difficulty getting on or off the vehicle

You could also work in community transport, where you would be driving schoolchildren, hospital patients and the elderly to their destinations.

If you are a coach driver you would do the same kind of work but the journeys would be longer. You could, for example, drive between cities, or drive people on day trips or holiday tours.

You would:

  • Load and unload luggage
  • Check tickets and passes
  • Make sure that all passengers are back on board for the return journey, and after any scheduled stops

You would be responsible for keeping the coach clean, doing basic vehicle checks before taking your vehicle out and reporting any incidents to inspectors back at the depot.

If you drive to overseas destinations you’d keep passengers up to date with travel information and work with foreign authorities, for example, when going through border controls.

You’d need excellent driving skills and knowledge of traffic regulations. Understanding health and safety issues would also be important.

Working conditions


There are regulations for weekly maximum driving hours. On local services you could work up to 48 hours a week on shifts, including evenings and weekends, between 6am and midnight. As a coach driver, you could drive for up to 56 hours a week, with a maximum of 90 hours over any two weeks.


If you take holiday tours, you could be away from home for several days at a time.

UK employment status





Self employed


Create a qualification route

We've found some examples of the qualifications that could help you get this job.

Discover my route

Search course options

Thinking about your future? There are lots of courses available that could interest you. Use our course search to explore course options.

Find courses

Search job opportunities

If you're looking for your new career our job search can help you. Discover interesting opportunities and decide your next steps.

Find a job

Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Reading
  • Verbal communication
  • Working with numbers
  • Respecting
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management
  • Reliable
  • Taking responsibility

Skills Explorer

Your skills can help you choose the career that's right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

Our Skills Explorer tool will help you understand what skills you have and match them to jobs that might suit you.

Use the Skills Explorer tool

Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.


There are no formal qualifications required to enter this role but some employers may ask for qualifications at SCQF level 4/5. 

Most employers value a good general education.

To start training with a company, you must hold a full EU driving licence and be aged at least 18. Some companies prefer to take on people who have held their driving licence for one or two years or who are aged over 21 (Check with them directly for details). 

You could also train independently by taking private lessons through a local driving school. Once you have your licence, you could then contact bus and coach companies about vacancies. 

You can apply for your provisional Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) licence through the .gov.uk website


Useful subjects

  • English
  • Maths
  • Modern languages
  • Geography

You will also need

  • Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) licence
  • Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC)

To get these, you must hold a full EU driving licence. 

Helpful to have

Any qualifications and experience that demonstrate helping customers, navigation and driving abilities such as a Scottish Vocational Qualification in Bus and Coach Passenger Carrying Vehicle Driving (SVQ level 2) will be helpful.