Motorcoach Census: Size and Activity of the Motorcoach Industry

Posted by Content Coordinator on Thursday, March 27th, 2014


Executive Summary

Motorcoach Census 2013 is a study commissioned by the American Bus Association Foundation (ABAF) to measure the size and activity of the motorcoach transportation service industry in the United States and Canada in 2012. The study provides information on the scope and impact of the motorcoach industry that builds upon earlier census research.

In 2012, the motorcoach industry in the United States and Canada consisted of 3,954 companies that operated  39,607 motorcoaches. In the United States, 3,623 companies operated 35,354 motorcoaches and, in Canada, 331  companies operated 4,253 motorcoaches.

Passenger Trips – The motorcoach industry provided 637 million passenger trips in 2012. About 35% of these trips  were provided by large companies that operated 100 or more motorcoaches, 25% by mid-size companies operating  25 to 99 motorcoaches and 41% by small companies operating fewer than 25 motorcoaches. The industry moved  individual passengers a total of 75.7 billion miles in 2012.

Services – Motorcoach companies offer a diverse variety of services. About 97% of motorcoach companies  provided charter service in 2012, 45% provided tour service, 21% provided sightseeing, 25% provided airport  shuttle, 23% provided scheduled service, 15% provided special operations, and 10% provided commuter services.  Charter service accounted for about 47.7% of motorcoach service mileage, followed by scheduled service (30.9%),  commuter (6.2%), packaged tour (6.0%), airport service (4.1%), sightseeing (2.7%), and special operations (2.5%).  Companies – The majority (94%) of companies were small, and operated fewer than 25 motorcoaches. All told,  these firms operated 21,002 motorcoaches, provided 258 million passenger trips, and accounted for 41% of  motorcoach mileage. Mid-sized companies, those that operated 25 to 99 motorcoaches, ran 9,309 motorcoaches,  provided 157 million passenger trips, and accounted for 24% of the industry’s motorcoach mileage. Large  companies that operated over 100 motorcoaches accounted for 23% of the industry’s fleet, provided 35% of the  industry’s passenger trips, and 35% of the industry’s motorcoach mileage.

Employment – The motorcoach industry provided jobs to 132,900 people in 2012; 71,600 full-time and 61,200  part-time. On average, a motorcoach company provided 33.6 jobs or 3.4 jobs per motorcoach. Small companies –  those that operated fewer than 25 motorcoaches – provided for 52% of motorcoach industry jobs. Mid-sized companies – those that operated between 25 and 99 motorcoaches – provided for 20% of motorcoach industry jobs. Large companies – those that operated more than 100 motorcoaches – provided for 29% of motorcoach industry jobs.

Fuel Efficiency – Considering the amount of passengers served per bus, motorcoaches move people with remarkable fuel efficiency. In 2012, the average fuel efficiency of a motorcoach was 6.1 miles per gallon of fuel. With this fuel efficiency, a motorcoach carrying the industry average of 39.3 passengers achieved 222.7 passenger miles per gallon of fuel in 2012.

Motorcoach Use – On average, a motorcoach provided 16,100 passenger trips in 2012, provided 1.9 million passenger miles, employed 3.4 people, used 8,600 gallons of fuel, and traveled 52,400 miles. About 56% of the average coach’s service mileage was for charter, tour, and sightseeing services and 44% was for fixed-route services (airport shuttle, commuter, scheduled, and special operations).

The study reveals the scope and impact of the motorcoach transportation industry in the United States and Canada. It shows an industry that serves a broad range of customers, from students to seniors, and that moves people with great fuel efficiency. It shows an industry that provides charter, tour, and sightseeing services, which are of vital importance to the travel and leisure industries, and intercity and commuter services, which are essential components of the passenger transportation systems in both the United States and Canada.

Selected Results of Motorcoach Census 2013

Download full version (PDF): Motorcoach Census 2013

About the American Bus Association
“ABA represents approximately 1,000 motorcoach and tour companies in the United States and Canada. Its members operate charter, tour, regular route, airport express, special operations and contract services (commuter, school, transit). Another 2,800 member organizations represent the travel and tourism industry and suppliers of bus products and services who work in partnership with the North American motorcoach industry. ABA is also home to ABA Foundation, a nonprofit organization with an emphasis on scholarships, research, and continuing education.”

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