Luxury buses in the USA: why they’re becoming the top choice for travelers

Think bus journeys mean being cramped and uncomfortable? Think again. Although buses have historically been widely used for transportation in many regions,  they have often been viewed as a less favored option in the United States. However, a host of new luxury bus companies are changing the scripts with their comfortable and convenient services. They may even be posing a threat to airlines.

We’ll run through how luxury buses differ from standard bus services and what to expect from them, along with some of the best options available for travelers and how to book your tickets.

What are luxury buses?

Like a standard bus service, luxury buses take you from A to B on a road vehicle with other passengers. But they do so while giving you a deluxe experience.

Unlike basic bus services like Greyhound’s, luxury buses are designed for those who want to travel in comfort.

They always offer a comfortable bathroom on board, sport fewer seats than budget buses, and offer wider, more comfortable seats with more legroom. They’re likely also to boast some of the following features:

  • Free complimentary items (e.g., blankets, pillows, refreshments, toiletries)
  • Generous baggage policy
  • Wide reclining seats or seats that turn into beds
  • Motion-canceling technology in the seats
  • High-speed WiFi
  • Privacy screens or curtains
  • Entertainment libraries or streaming services

Why are travelers choosing luxury buses?

The convenience of avoiding lines

When opting for a luxury service, many travelers find buses become a more enjoyable and comfortable experience than using a plane. There’s no long queue, strenuous security process, or turning up hours in advance. Just turn up at the station fifteen minutes before departure and wait to board your bus. It couldn’t be simpler.

Next-level comfort

Luxury buses are a game-changer for the industry, which has been investing in offering more comfortable rides to customers who want to travel comfortably and avoid the nuisance of flying. With luxury buses often being more comfortable than airplanes, with wider seats and extra legroom, passengers are finding a more practical and efficient way to travel.

Although journeys on buses take longer than plane trips on paper, the difference is often marginal after accounting for time spent waiting at airports. 

Plus, you get to see more of the local scenery as you travel. Or, if you’d prefer, you can sleep undisrupted from the get-go (instead of having to force yourself to stay awake while you wait for the airport to announce your boarding gate has opened).

Cost-efficient option

Taking a trip with a luxury bus is ofter more affordable than flying. Even the pricier bus fares rarely go significantly over $100, while plane tickets can easily cost $300 or $400 in the US.

Another factor is the environmental benefits compared to other transport options, such as planes. For example, flying from Austin to Houston emits 61 kg of CO2 when using a plane, yet the same journey emits just 9kg when traveling by bus.

Finally, since luxury buses are a lot more readily available now, they’re a genuine option for consumers.

Read also: 12 routes where bus travel beats flying in the US

Luxury bus services in the US

See the value in luxury bus services? 

Let’s look at four of the most popular US services in more detail:

  • The Jet
  • RedCoach
  • Vamoose Gold
  • Tufesa

The Jet

The Jet is a luxury coach company that’s taking the US by storm. Don’t be fooled by the name — The Jet is very much a bus service, although it gets its name because it aims to provide a luxury experience that mirrors not standard airplanes but private jets. Far from the typical crowded experience on buses, each vehicle has just 14 passengers.

It’s also known for its “motion-canceling technology,” designed by none other than BOSE to provide a transport version of its noise-canceling tech. As a result, the seats have a combination of gel foam and memory foam and an incline designed to soothe you to sleep.

Other luxury features include access to refreshments onboard, including wine and coffee, access to a lavatory, and fast WiFi. Additionally, there is a minimum age requirement of six years old in place to ensure that adults can enjoy a peaceful journey.

The Jet operates just one journey currently (Washington to NYC – Manhattan), which takes around four hours and runs most days. Although the company currently only runs between New York and Washington, it has plans to add more routes in the future. Philadelphia and Baltimore are the top priorities.


The Jet coach


While The Jet is a new company, RedCoach already has 14 years of history under its belt — over that time, it has carried more than two million passengers. 

RedCoach is a bus company that operates routes within Texas and Florida (but not between the two), with new routes being added frequently. It has departures every day, making it a convenient choice for people looking to travel around the two states.

There are three different bus classes depending on whether your priority is comfort or cost. If you want a true luxury experience, the best option is its first-class service. First-class buses have only 27 seats, which are 21 inches wide (compared to the 56 seats that are 16 inches wide you’ll find on the economy service). All chairs are reclinable and the coaches also have perks like toilets, WiFi, electrical outlets, and computer tables.


Red Coach first class

Vamoose Gold

Vamoose is a coach company that covers New York, Maryland, and Virginia, with a history dating back to 2004. While most Vamoose trips are more akin to standard bus journeys than luxury, it also offers the Vamoose Gold Bus service to the luxury segment.

A Vamoose Gold bus consists of 34 wide, reclining leather seats with additional legroom. A major perk for solo travelers is that there are 12 single-seat rows, with the seat taking a 2-1 configuration. 

Buses also have reading lights, power outlets, WiFi, and complimentary bottled water — in addition to standard Vamoose perks, such as luggage assistance and flexible ticket changes.


Vamoose gold seats
Vamoose gold seats


Last but not least, we have Tufesa, a Mexican bus company that also covers the US. Like many other Latin American countries, bus travel is a popular option in Mexico, and the company is now bringing its premier service to the States.

The company has different categories of buses, so if you’re looking for the most comfortable option, choose the Platinum Service, which offers 2:1 configuration, extra reclining seats, vast legroom, and spacious bathrooms.

All Tufesa buses have toilets on board and comfortable seats, along with air conditioning for those hot California days. However, there is no WiFi, power outlets or snacks, so it’s not quite on the same level as some of the buses on this list.

Tufesa has some fantastic bus routes, focusing on California but also visiting adjacent regions, such as Arizona and Nevada. Plus, there are trips from the US to Tijuana, Mexico — though if you want to take cross-border trips, there are additional boarding requirements to keep in mind for a smooth journey.

Unfortunately, Tufesa timetables are less easy to access online than those of other services, and most of the information is in Spanish. It can therefore be tough to understand how to book a ticket when using the official site.

This is where services like Busbud come in useful. To remove these obstacles, we have aggregated all the information from Tufesa (along with other services) into one easy-to-use interface. You can also buy your tickets directly from us for maximum convenience.


Tufesa Platinum service
Tufesa Platinum service

How to book a luxury bus service

If you think a luxury bus service could be the right fit for your next trip, the only thing left is to book your tickets. When there are multiple companies operating different routes, it can be challenging to figure out which option is right for you.

Using a centralized site like Busbud fixes this problem. Busbud pulls information and routes from each of these services and allows you to compare them and plan your route with one simple tool. Just choose where you want to go and the desired date and time, and Busbud will give you a wide selection of options.

You can then purchase your tickets straight away, it just a few clicks. And if you ever travel outside of the US, you can use Busbud to book your bus and train tickets in over 80 countries, all in your own language and currency. 

Ready to ride in style? Book your bus and train tickets today.