Let's learn more about Busbud, a bus booking platform that allows travelers to find bus tickets to various places around the world. Let's find out what they can and can't do so you can be more informed before booking a ticket.
For backpackers on a budget, buses are perhaps the best way to travel around, especially when it comes to exploring Europe. They are cheaper than airplane tickets and cover more destinations than rail networks.
But, booking bus tickets in foreign countries is rarely a smooth experience. There can be a lack of payment options, lack of information on the available services, and language barriers. Fortunately, there are apps that help you overcome these issues.
One such service is Busbud. On the outside, Busbud seemed to be a credible booking service that covers a large number of destinations. But, we also came across mixed opinions about it and thought you should know it too.
Read our Busbud review to find out!
What is Busbud?
As the name implies, Busbud is a booking platform that helps travelers book bus tickets online to various destinations. The cross-platform service connects users with intercity bus networks from around the world.
It was founded in 2011 by Louis-Phillippe Maurice, who experienced the frustrating process of booking buses during his backpacking trip in South America. He also saw the potential of an online booking system that would help the market grow significantly.
Today, Busbud covers 80+ countries, 21,000 cities, and over 2 million bus routes after having partnered with many bus companies worldwide. It supports multiple currencies and languages, so users can book tickets more conveniently. There is both an app and a website for booking. The app is available for both Android and iOS devices and is free to download.
How Does Busbud Work?
Download the app or visit the website and check if Busbud offers its service for the destination/city you are hoping to visit. Specify the departure and arrival destinations, date, number of passengers, and return date if necessary and click “Search Now.” Depending on the availability, you will get a number of options to compare and review. You can look at the prices and other information to decide which operator offers the best value for money.
In many cases, you can book directly via Busbud, but sometimes you will be redirected to the bus operator’s website. Then, you have to enter the passenger details, credit/debit card details and make the payment. You should be able to download the tickets as well.
What do we like about Busbud!
- Covers many cities
At present, Busbud covers cities in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Southeast Asia and continues to add more destinations. It’s a good choice for those looking for a worldwide bus booking app.
- More choice
Busbud has partnered with many large bus companies in the world, providing more choices for its users. Some of the popular partners are Greyhound, BoltBus, FlixBus, National Express, and Mega Bus. If the destination you are planning to visit has more bus operators, you can compare their fares and amenities and select the best deal.
Buses are the cheapest public transport option available in many countries. Although it may not be supremely comfortable as planes or taxis, they don’t drain your cash quickly. They are also eco-friendly.
Some foreign bus companies might not offer your preferred payment option. Also, with Busbud, you don’t have to visit multiple websites and compare prices. It’s especially helpful if you are looking to book a bus to a lesser known destination (as long as it’s covered by Busbud).
What we don’t like about Busbud.
- Alarming number of negative reviews
Despite the supposedly convenient booking service, Busbud has failed to keep its users satisfied. We came across a lot of negative reviews that put their reliability and efficiency to question.
- No customer support hotline
One of the frequent complaints of Busbud is the lack of good customer support, which makes it difficult for users to report issues or claim refunds. Although Busbud provides 24/7 support, it is only available via email, and it takes a longer response time. They should seriously consider introducing a phone number to improve the service.
- Faulty booking process
Users have encountered many issues related to the booking process. In some cases, Busbud has failed to register the booking despite deducting the payment from the user. Some users have complained, saying they never received the ticket or confirmation email, although the money had been paid. There have also been instances where people were dropped off at the wrong locations, which can be horribly inconvenient. Sadly, we think such lackluster service outweighs all the positive aspects about Busbud and really hope they improve it.
Busbud vs. WanderU – Which is Better?
Busbud covers or at least tries to cover the global market, whereas WanderU specializes in Europe and North America. When considering the reliability and customer experience, WanderU remains ahead of Busbud. Also, unlike Busbud, WanderU covers both bus and rail, which we consider an added advantage. However, if you are going on a trip to Africa or Asia, Busbud is the one to consider. You can also read our WanderU review to compare these services yourself.
Is Busbud Legit?
Yes. It is a legit service, and a fraction of users have benefitted from its service greatly. However, we don't think it's the best top option for an online bus ticket booking app. The main problem, as we see it, is their unreliable customer support. It leaves users stranded when faced with issues. So, resolving it can improve the service significantly.
Let me introduce Pilot
Today, many apps help you travel more conveniently. For example, there’s Dollar Flight Club to help you find cheap airfare deals, PackPoint to help you pack efficiently, and AllTrails for outdoor adventures. The list is long and endless. But, the primary app you need for trips is a good travel planning app!
If you are looking for a reliable and flexible travel planner, try using Pilot. You can plan your trips with friends or co-workers, chatting with them in real-time to agree on everything involved in the trip. Pilot also lets you store important travel documents, so you have everything organized in one place!