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Early tour bus in Salt Lake City, 1909
A colourful tour bus at Kuranda, Queensland, Australia
Tourists taking photos from a ParisCityVision open-topped tour bus in Paris.
Salvador Bahia Bus in Santo Antonio da Barra Lighthouse, in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.

A tour bus service is an escorted tour (sometimes a package holiday) or bus service that takes visitors sightseeing, with routes around tourist attractions.


It has been suggested that this section be split out into another article titled City tourist bus service. (Discuss) (January 2023)

Double-decker buses and open top buses are commonly used, for providing a good view. Large coaches are used internationally by tour operators, intercity bus lines and charters, for short and long distance destinations. These buses are larger than regular transit buses, with 2 to 4 axles (6 to 10 wheels).

The history of tour buses in North America began in the early 20th century, when trucks were converted to provide a means for sightseeing within large American cities.[1] Gray Line, the largest sightseeing operators, began operations in 1910.[2] Sightseeing was likely a side business for many intercity bus operators because the same types of buses were used (this remains true even today). World War II saw the industry decline, but it slowly re-emerged as an alternative to driving.[1]

Many musicians, entertainers, dancing crews and bands travel in sleeper buses, commonly referred to as "tour buses". While most if not all of the buses and coaches listed above are for commercial applications, there are many coaches manufactured for personal use as motorhomes. These bus based motorhomes are considered the top end of the RV market.

Common features

Tour coach manufacturers

See also


  1. ^ a b "Driven John Mack Kept on Truckin', Helping Build Modern America". Archived from the original on January 11, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2011.
  2. ^ Risko, Karin (2018). A History Lover's Guide to Detroit. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4671-3567-2.
  3. ^ "Bus Toilets / Toilets of the World". Retrieved May 22, 2011.
  4. ^ "New Prevost features to be showc". December 22, 2006. Retrieved March 28, 2011.