ID #5130

Travelling by Bus in South Africa.

This is not as easy as it seems, for several reasons:

o    Private-sector: All bus transport is operated by the private sector in South Africa, who do not co-operate for the benefit of customers insofar as route-planning is concerned.

o    Long-haul versus Short-haul: Bus operators appear to be divided into sectors, as follows:

(a) Long-haul carriers such as Greyhound, Intercape, Translux, and Luxliner, who operate primarily between the hubs shown in the attached diagram. The Baz Bus is the exception. While it is a long-haul carrier, it travels mainly along the coast, offers a hop-on hop-off service and caters primarily to backpackers.

(b) Short-haul carriers such as Magic, Lowveld Link, etc who operate around major airports such as OR Tambo (Johannesburg International), Durban, Cape Town and Port Elizabeth.

o    Lesotho gets in the Way:  Few roads pass through the “Kingdom in the Sky”, so all buses must of necessity pass either above or below this insurmountable obstacle. A few travelling from Cape Town to Durban go around it to avoid having to travel over notoriously bad roads in the Transkei.

A powerpoint slide illustrating the various routes is presented below (see attachment). I have attempted to simplify searching by attaching an Excel spreadsheet in which longhaul carriers which operate between the various hubs is presented. Bear in mind however that this spreadsheet is not necessarily accurate since some of the carriers do not publish their routes. When in doubt, search all of the carriers involved.

attached files: South African Bus Routes.xls, South African Bus Routes Powerpoint.ppt

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Last update: 2014-05-25 23:49
Author: Alan McIver
Revision: 1.10

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