Do you want to see the island on a budget and without the hassle of driving your car? Three (3) types of Barbados bus options are available to you. Barbados’s regularly running bus system services each part of the island.
The buses cannot be missed; they are brightly painted in the national colors of blue with a horizontal yellow stripe and offer one of the best transportation methods in Barbados.
They are the roomiest and most comfortable public transport option and provide a relaxed atmosphere in which you can sit back and take in the sights and sounds of Barbados while en route to your next adventure.
These buses have signage on or above the front windshield, indicating the furthest point they travel to, and the drivers will also readily tell you whether your stop is along their route.
What About Bus Timetables?
The Transport Board buses run daily from as early as 5.30 am on weekdays and 6 am on weekends, as late as midnight.
They tend to run every half hour from the main bus terminals on weekdays and approximately every hour on weekends; however, it’s always best to check the timetable of your specific route before setting off on your travels.
For more information on bus route schedules and timetables, visit the Barbados Transport Board and Find a Bus Route.
Hint: Although the bus schedules are relatively regular, as with anything in Barbados, you may wish to keep in mind our notorious ‘island time’ if you notice a bus not arriving at the exact appointed time – it’s a slightly slower pace than what you might be used to.
Additional Bus Information
The Transport Board buses are government-owned and operated, and the fare is BBD 3.50 one way for adults.
Tip: Because these buses operate with a farebox system and drivers do not carry change, please bring the correct fare. If you are boarding from one bus terminal, you can get money changed there.
It’s worth also noting that there are certain fare exceptions:
— School children under 18 years, wearing a school uniform or not, but have their Barbados Identification Card and a full-time student ID card, can travel for free until 8 pm on weekdays.
— Adults over 65 years are exempt from paying but must possess and present a Barbados Identification Card as soon as they hop aboard.
— Children under the age of 5 years also travel for free. However, they must be accompanied by an adult and cannot sit on the bus.
How Do I Catch a Bus in Barbados?
There are three Transport Board bus terminals:
— Fairchild Street, Bridgetown (opposite Jordan’s Supermarket)
— Princess Alice Terminal, Bridgetown (near the main Post Office)
— Speightstown, St. Peter.
The bus depot is located in Mangrove, St. Philip, with a sub-terminal in Oistins, Christ Church.
Bus stops are marked ‘Out of City‘ and ‘To City‘ dotted all over the island where you can catch these buses. Other bus stops look like little shelters and are named after women – part of a project called ‘Adopt a Stop.’
Barbados also has minibusses, smaller than the Transport Board buses and painted in the national colors, but in reverse – bright yellow with a horizontal blue stripe.
These buses are privately owned and generally have a driver and a conductor to collect your fare. The fare is the same BBD 3.50 as per the blue buses.
Their final destination is shown in the bottom left-hand corner of the windshield. You can also catch these buses from any stops all over the island and the island bus terminals.
Hint: You should check out the exact routes of these buses before boarding, as they only travel select roads. Your best bet is to ask a local or one of the drivers/conductors.
Be aware that sometimes the drivers and conductors overload these buses to make more money, so be prepared to stand during peak travel times. There are also white privately-owned ZR vans notorious here on the island. You can also catch these from the bus stops and the town’s two ‘van stands.’ All we can say is that they are genuinely a Bajan experience!
Brett Callaghan is the founder and managing director of Totally Barbados. I specialize in writing content for the tourism industry for my island home of Barbados. I help companies build strategies to grow their businesses online with SMART marketing, advertising, and social media goals.