The popularity of church buses among ministry groups is easy to understand. Having the flexibility to easily arrange transportation for youth groups, choirs, seniors, and the congregation is a valuable asset for any church. Unfortunately, when deciding to look at church buses or church vans, the wide variety of options can feel overwhelming. To help your church make an educated decision, here is information that should clarify your options, and the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Church vans for sale are an attractive option because many vans can come with wheelchair lifts, and are spacious enough to provide your church members with a comfortable ride. Additionally, many vans don’t require that the driver holds a CDL license, which requires training, and passing Department of Transportation tests. The downside to the van is that seating is limited. Most hold up to 14 seats, and there are a few models that can seat between 15 and 25 individuals, but to safely transport greater numbers of people would require a bus.
Transit buses represent a good option when you are looking for a vehicle that is in-between a van, and bus. Most mid-size buses hold 26 to 34 passengers or more. One of the largest bus options, a motor coach, can hold more than 60 passengers plus the driver. However, as mentioned previously, CDL licensing is required for most bus drivers. Also, as size increases, so do maintenance costs, fuel costs, and safety concerns.
Church buses for sale will initially be more expensive to a church, but with light use, a bus might last for a very long time, making it a valuable investment for a ministry. If a church finds a charter bus for sale, they might also consider that they will have the option of selling that vehicle should it no longer see use by the church, or if they need to upgrade to a newer vehicle or model.
Bus leasing companies are very common, but leasing a bus can unfortunately come with mileage restrictions. However, maintenance is typically easier, and the cost can be lower for the church that chooses to lease. As an added benefit, leasing a vehicle gives churches the option to upgrade to newer models on a more regular basis.
Deciding whether to invest in a bus, or a van, via purchase, or lease, can be a complicated decision to navigate. Identifying the passenger requirements of your congregation will be important, as well as the financial burden that your church is willing to take on. Hopefully this information can help your church to make a decision around which transportation options meet the needs of your church and its members.