Hard to believe I’ve been a Mass Transit Operator for almost a decade and a half. At only 34 years old I assure you, I never saw this coming. Anywho, earning a CDL and driving a bus may have been the best career choice I’ve ever made, and you can do the same!


When executed with intention, I believe driving a bus is the best blue-collar job in the world. Let me tell you why—


Easy To Get In

As the internet tries to turn everyone and into gazillionaire entrepreneurs, the term ROI gets tossed around a lot. Cool, here is the ROI on becoming a transit operator.

In the current market, the average salary for a driver is well above $70,000 in most Major Cities, and it won’t cost you 6 years of school and $100,000 worth of debt. It will cost you about 30 days of learning how to check mirrors. Most companies can train you to get a CDL for free, and even some of the “CDL schools” will only run you about 30K. Not terrible at all, and the ROI hits almost immediately.

I think one of the biggest myths young adults are being told is that the ONLY way to “make it” is to go to college and get a degree.  The funny thing about that is there isn’t a shortage of people with a degree. Not judging, I’m just saying I’ve never seen 12,000 bus operators be laid off at one time.

Anywho here’s the road map, find the agency of your choice and fill out a job application. That’s it. That’s how you can make $60,000 in 60 minutes.  Eat your heart out random YouTube ad.


Free College

Have you ever heard the term OPM?  It stands for other people’s money, and in all honesty, it’s typically how things work here in the USA. Listen, I don’t make the news, I just read the paper.  But while we are on the topic of college, most transit agencies have tuition reimbursement. In a nutshell, if you choose to stay in the world of transportation they’ll pay for your secondary education. I took full advantage of this back in 2015 and strolled into Morgan State University, knowing I’d never have to worry about how my education was gonna get paid for. Not to mention, I was driving so I had enough money for my own books, lunch, and school merch.


Health Benefits

Do you know how much it is to get a tooth pulled with no health insurance? $375 standard, over $1,000 if it’s surgical.  I remember I switched pharmacies once, and they hadn’t gotten my insurance info yet. I strolled in ever so cool and calm and requested my Advair Diskus and the tech quoted me $250. Now I’m not a math theologian, but I know enough to know that I take this medicine twice a day, So that means it costs me $4.16 per puff! Geez!

Don’t be like me, use OPM. (Other people’s money)

Transit agencies have some of the best insurance around. I’ve done pretty well outside of driving full time, but no cap…I still miss the insurance.


Best Part-Time Gig Ever

Here is the hidden gem of being a CDL holder when compared to someone with a standard job. Earlier we talked about how the average transit salary is about $50K right? Ok cool, so broken down that’s anywhere from $24-$26 an hour. In 2023 the most popular part-time jobs were among retail workers, restaurant servers, and rideshare drivers. None of those are making $24-26 an hour…PART TIME. Here is what I’m getting at–at its core, a CDL is a chainsaw. It’s cool to have when you need it and will cut down massive debt, I mean trees faster than anything else.


Career Stability

Can I make it plain? You will never have to worry about mass layoffs ever in transit.  You do not have to worry about Elon Musk buying Detroit Valley Transit (made up company) and forcing you to sleep in your office. I’ll be the first to tell you,–I’m not the biggest fan of unions at all, nor political agendas within the transit space. But what I will tell you is if you choose to– you can probably drive transit for the next 30 years and never really worry about much financially. A big wig investor will not buy the  New York subway and shut it down for revenue purposes. Businesses have a goal to be profitable, transit will never be profitable and everyone knows it. 😅  You won’t be locked out of your company email on a random Monday morning because your agency was bought by some guy with a billion dollars in cryptocurrency.


Drive a bus. It’s easier.