BusBank Acquires Buster to Bring Leading-Edge Technology to the Group Travel Market

BusBank, the group transportation booking platform of choice for professional sports teams, music festivals, Fortune 500 companies, and event planners, has acquired Buster, the tech-savvy startup that makes it easy to book group transportation online. The move will bring better technology to the bus market, making it easier to both book and operate a bus anywhere in North America.

Today, finding and booking a bus is difficult and time-intensive, whether you’re an office intern planning the annual outing to the ballpark or a professional wedding planner who needs shuttles and party buses every week.

The difficulties come from the current fragmentation in the market: today, there are 3,264 bus companies in the United States and Canada operating more than 38,000 coach buses. But only 22 of them have more than 100 buses, meaning there’s no single online destination you can visit and reliably find a bus, regardless of your needs. Most people’s bus-booking experience involves conducting a frantic Google search, visiting several companies’ websites, making a handful of phone calls, and sometimes waiting days or even weeks to get quotes to compare.

Obviously, that’s not ideal.

What the Acquisition Means for Customers

Now that Buster and BusBank are joining forces, the frustration and confusion that used to be a part of trying to book group travel from a trusted company is over.

BusBank has thousands of bus operators in its system whose vehicles customers can reserve. Now, they’ll be able to do that online in a matter of minutes, thanks to Buster’s backend technology. Customers of both BusBank and Buster will have access to more vehicles than ever before, and they’ll all benefit from Buster’s easy three-step reservation system:ashley-gerlach-435502

  • Enter itinerary details.
  • Choose your vehicle.
  • View availability (in real time!) and make a reservation.

In other words, the acquisition means that customers can expect booking a bus to be a lot more like reserving a rental car or buying an airline ticket: online, fast, and simple. A process that once took weeks now takes 10 minutes or less.

And if your request is complicated or multi-faceted, don’t worry: you’ll still be able to talk to the account service specialists who have been providing BusBank’s excellent customer service since its founding.

What the Acquisition Means for Operator Partners

Operators who list their vehicles on Buster will enjoy the same process for accepting jobs: they’ll get emails alerting them to available trips in the Exchange, then claim jobs according to their availability. The major difference is that there will be more bookings available, meaning more opportunity to earn money. That’s thanks to the thousands of BusBank customers operators will now have access to.

BusBank operators will enjoy the same service from the team they know and trust, but, again, with access to more bookings. They’ll also be able to take advantage of Buster’s technology, which will let them accept bookings, review their booking history, and update their fleet information online.

All operator partners will have access to the top-tier operator relations team that has served BusBank customers consistently over the years.

Better Group Travel Options for Everyone

For years now, most people have known where to go online to book individual travel and which brands they trust to provide safe rides and excellent service.

Thanks to the BusBank acquisition of Buster, people will now have a single online destination for booking group travel, whether they need a couple shuttles for a family wedding or daily shuttle transportation for a corporate workforce, or providing transportation for a national music festival.  

The two companies couldn’t be better positioned to make easy group travel a reality: in addition to Buster’s proven tech platform, its leadership team includes former Priceline executives, whose experience in the online travel space can’t be beaten. As for BusBank, it has supported successful bus trips and large events throughout North America for almost two decades.

Customers can expect the following from group travel reservations made through BusBank or Buster:

  • A full vehicle suite with nationwide coverage. This includes coach buses, SUVs, Sprinter vans, luxury buses, yellow school buses, and party buses.
  • On-call account service specialists who can help plan and execute travel events.
  • Instant price quotes you see within seconds of entering your needs. And all trips can be changed or canceled up to one week ahead of your event.
  • Reputable, safe vehicles. All operators available through the Buster and BusBank platforms are thoroughly vetted to ensure they meet US Department of Transportation safety and insurance standards. Operators are required to own and maintain their vehicles.
  • Proactive event management.  Account service specialists coordinate with operators ahead of your event to make sure all details have been communicated and all vehicles will be on time.

The combined forces of BusBank and Buster will make group travel easier throughout North America, both for those in the passenger seats and those operating the buses. We look forward to seeing you on the road!

Article by Ben Newland

Ben is Director of Product at Buster. He's the proud owner of our office dog, Dexter, whose paw can be seen on our 404 page (which hopefully means nothing to you).