Bus Driver (NSW/ACT)
Education and Training:
You can work as a bus driver without formal qualifications, but employers usually require Year 10. You will probably get some informal training on the job.
To gain employment with State Transit (NSW) you must pass a selection test. State Transit tests are held throughout the year, depending on vacancies, and are advertised in major newspapers. You must be at least 20 years of age, hold a current, unrestricted Australian drivers licence and be able to meet the Ministry of Transport's requirements to be issued with a NSW Ministry of Transport Public Passenger Vehicle Driver Authority Card. State Transit offers on-the-job driver training, the duration of which depends on previously held licences and experience.
In the ACT you need an O-class licence. You will be required to obtain a heavy vehicle learners permit and to purchase a Medium Rigid (MR) competency-based logbook and guide before you begin training. The minimum requirements to obtain an O-class licence include a medical test, obtaining a police clearance and demonstrating English communication skills. Applicants for an O-class licence must have held an Australian drivers licence for at least three years, and hold a full licence at the time they lodge their application. Training for this licence is through the Transport Industry Skills Centre. Bus drivers must also undertake 19 days of training with ACTION (the ACT Internal Omnibus Network) after obtaining the licence.
You can also become a bus driver through a traineeship in Driving Operations. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.
Private bus companies also offer on-the-job training, although you may need some experience in driving heavy vehicles.
Competency Based Assessment is available as an alternative to formal training. You record each driving skill in a logbook and those skills are assessed by a Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) accredited assessor.
Once you are employed, you may be able to develop, and have recognised, additional skills under the Transport and Logistics Training Package that will expand your career opportunities within this industry.
While the following courses are related to this occupation, they may not necessarily lead directly to employment, nor provide the most direct pathway to the occupation. Courses which provide preliminary or informal training, as well as those which provide additional job skills following initial qualifications may also be listed.
*Course is offered by more than one institution. Click link for details.
- Apply Fatigue Management Strategies (TLI Unit) *
- Drive and Manoeuvre Trailers (AUR Unit)
- Follow Occupational Health and Safety Procedures (TLI Unit) *
Bus drivers are employed in the public sector by government transport authorities and by private bus, charter and coach services.
Demand for bus drivers depends upon passenger usage of bus services and upon public transport policy decisions and funding. The job can be stressful and turnover in the industry is high, creating new openings.
There are no tram services in NSW/ACT. Employment opportunities for tram drivers are available in Victoria and SA.
For Further Information:
State Transit Authority
Information for other states and territories: