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Bus Terminology


New Bus

A new bus is a bus which has never been sold, leased or subcontracted. New buses are available from new bus dealers, such as BestBusSales.com. A new bus is the best choice for companies intending high-volume transportation such as hotel shuttle buses or casino shuttles.

Used Bus

A used bus is a bus, or coach that has been previously owned or leased. Used buses range in age and condition dependant on the owner and type of usage. Corporations that purchase fleets of vehicles tend to have better maintenance, but it's not a rule. Smaller companies also may take excellent care of their vehicles. The bottom line is that any vehicle should be thoroughly inspected before considering purchase. The reputation of the dealer is another aspect. Check to make sure you will have the support and maintenance you will need to keep your investment in tip-top-condition.

Demo Bus

A demo is a dealer's demonstrations bus taken to tradeshows and utilized to provide potential customers with ride and feature audition. These vehicles are untitled and although they acrue mileage, an original new-vehicle warranty is included at time of purchase or lease.

ASE Certified Mechanics

Look for an ASE logo when deciding where to have your vehicle served. ASE-certified technicians are required to take periodic tests and are updated on new technologies and features, as well as manufacturer recalls.

Non-CDL Buses (commercial driver’s license).

Buses carrying 14 or fewer passengers (sans driver) have no requirement for a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This is an advantage for small companies, organizations, and churches, which do not have commercially licensed drivers and may not be able afford them.

Non-CDL buses may also referred to as shuttles or shuttle buses and can have wheelchair lifts or ramps installed to serve as paratransit vehicles. Typically, a wheelchair position will require two standard seating positions, so a vehicle rated at 14 passengers with three wheelchair positions may carry only 8 passengers.

Organizations upgrading from a passenger van to a shuttle bus may find a non-CDL bus or shuttle an easy transition. Non-CDL buses are highly maneuverable and many can be parked on a street as you would a van.

Church Bus

Every church loves to see all of its members in attendance, and a church bus provides the means to make that happen. Churchgoers with mobility restrictions or those who are handicapped and cannot attend regularly can board a wheelchair-friendly church bus with ease.

The church bus has long been the friendly vehicle to bring those members to their place of worship on a regular basis, who would not normally be able to attend.

Church buses come in a variety of sizes and capacities, but what makes a bus a “church bus?”

A church bus responsible for transporting members to and from the church should have a wheelchair lift or ramp, with positions onboard for the wheelchairs to be tethered.

Safety is always an important issue, for any bus requirement, particularly church bus requirements. The bus structure needs to have reinforced steel surrounding the cabin to protect the passengers. Several church bus manufacturers adhere to this formula for safety such as Glaval, Turtle Top, and Ameritrans.

It is equally helpful to find a church bus, which does not require a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). This allows several members to be “designated drivers” without need of hiring or becoming certified for business-class vehicles.

Low Floor Bus

A bus that kneels before you climb aboard. A set of special air suspension tanks are used to raise and lower the cabin. Low floor buses provide fast, safe boarding and de-boarding for passengers. Low floor buses have automatic ramps to provide access for wheelchairs and walkers.

Ramp Van

A ramp van is a full-size passenger van, which incorporates either an automatic or manual ramp providing wheelchair access for a passenger or the driver.

Ramp vans can be modified for special needs drivers that cannot use floor pedals. With these modifications and an automatically lowered ramp, drivers confined to wheelchairs can travel and shop independently.

Typically, ramp vans have raised roofs to accommodate wheelchair assistants once inside the vehicle. Raised-roofs are fitted on vans aftermarket, typically at the same time of a wheelchair ramp installation.

Companies like The Braun Corporation have built their reputations on ramp van installations.

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