Moving Australia


Bus Industry Vital Statistics

Bus & Coach Statistics in Australia 

How many buses are there in Australia?

The ABS Census of motor vehicle – January 2011 identifies 87,883 registered buses in Australia.

A 2003 Fact Sheet from Professor David Hensher of the University of Sydney Passenger Transport Activity in Australia identified the break up as 62% small (less than 20 seats), 10% medium (21-40 seats) and 28% large (41 seats and above)

Applying these proportions to the current total of 87,883 we get:


Where do they go?

Buses perform a range of services including urban route, school bus, regional route, long distance, tour and charter.


Figure 1: Average bus and coach kilometres by vehicle type[1]

In the coach sector more than 5,000 coaches are in operation nationally, with a rolling stock value of more than $2 billion. [2]


Who owns the buses?

Bus services are delivered by a combination of government owned and run fleets and private bus companies.

How many bus companies are there?

There are more than 3,000 bus companies in operation across Australia servicing towns and regions, tour and charter services and major cities.[3]

Where are these buses from?

Australia has a vibrant local bus manufacturing sector.

The vast majority of large and medium buses in Australia are manufactured locally.

As of 2011 almost 80% of new buses sold in Australia were manufactured in Australia and more than 90 per cent of the buses large and medium in operation are built in Australia.

There are 15 bus manufacturers who build their buses locally.

There were more than 7500 new buses delivered to the Australian market in the five years to 2011.This is a turnover of almost $3 billion.[4]

There are almost 10,000 employees in the Australian bus manufacturing sector encompassing tradesmen, technicians and sales and administrative staff.

How many people work in the bus industry?

There are more than 50,000 people employed in the Australian bus industry.[5]

This includes employees in bus and coach operations, the Australian bus manufacturing sector and parts and service suppliers to the industry.

How many people catch buses in Australia?

The bus industry services 1.5 billion urban public transport passengers per year. Buses make up 5 per cent of the total urban passenger task.

The coach sector of the bus industry, comprising long distance, rural, tour, charter and express bus operators moves more than 1.5 million domestic travellers. [6]

Coaches make up 8 per cent of the total non urban passenger task.[7]

[1] Hensher, D. 2003, Passenger Transport Activity in Australia, Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies University of Sydney, UNSW.

[2] Bus Industry Confederation, 2010, Industry Survey, Bus Industry Confederation of Australia, Canberra

[3] Bus Industry Confederation 2004, Moving People A National Priority, Canberra.

[4] Bus Industry Confederation, 2011, Based on bus sales data recorded in Australasian Bus and Coach Magazine.

[5] 2010, Bus Industry Confederation Members Survey

[6] Tourism Research Australia, 2008, Transport Fact Sheet, Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism, Canberra.

[7] Hensher, D. 2003, Passenger Transport Activity in Australia, Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies University of Sydney, UNSW.

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