Group travel organisers share their experiences of great coach drivers and the difference they make to day trips and holidays. 

Coach drivers are perhaps the unsung heroes of the group travel trade, and as we’ve discovered, when you get somebody behind the wheel who is willing to go above and beyond for their passengers, it can make for a much more enjoyable trip. 

Nicola Haynes of Theatre Trips Essex recalls a recent experience where her driver was called into action when one of her group members became overwhelmed.

She said: “I had somebody on a trip to the theatre who decided that she needed to get back on the coach which would have meant she’d have been on her own for three hours.

Members of Theatre Trips Essex outside the London Palladium before a show

Members of Nicola’s group enjoy all sorts of visits, especially trips to the theatre.

“I contacted my driver who was brilliant - he let her back on the coach and sat with her for around three hours, just chatting away and cracking jokes. To have a driver who does that is just fantastic. I have got another driver who loves to sing Roll Out the Barrel as soon as we get into London which usually gets a laugh.”

Lis Bird of Yatton Outings Club recalls a time when their driver stepped in to assist with a medical emergency that had unfolded on board.

“Our driver Matt was tested recently when one of the group members collapsed and passed out just before getting on the motorway,” she said. “He quickly altered direction as there was a hospital nearby, and drove us there so we could get the passenger the medical attention she needed.

Coach holiday

Groups can enjoy their coach journey much more if they get a driver who is willing to muck in.

“The coach had to stop in the road outside and Matt was so helpful throughout – he said this was the first time anything like this had happened for him and he rose to the occasion brilliantly.”

Barbara Tester, group organiser for the Day Explorers Group, said: “For years I had one man and his coach who was a lovely chap. It was like having an additional member of the group.

“We once broke down, but with good communication it was sorted. When he retired, I asked for suggestions and he recommended another man and his coach - a local person who is very quiet in some ways, but always enjoys talking to people one to one.

Monica Sado and some of the NHS Retirement Fellowship – Brent Branch

Monica Sado (furthest right) says that her old driver would go above and beyond for them.

Barbara added: “He is very obliging and always tells us not worry - nothing is ever a problem. Somebody once left something on the coach and he delivered it to their home. He is always early and drives very carefully. We give him a good tip which he always passes on to his grandchildren.”

Monica Sado of the NHS Retirement Fellowship added that it’s the little things that really help the whole group enjoy a visit.

“Our old driver would ask for the itinerary about ten days before the trip,” she said. “He would then research it and remember all the details without looking at his notes. He would even throw in the odd fact about where we were going which made it more interesting for us.

“He would always help with the luggage and take it to people’s hotel rooms if needs be, and would help those in need on and off the coach. I remember one time, he dropped us off at the top of the hill and met us at the bottom so we didn’t have to walk back - you don’t always get lucky with drivers who do that sort of thing, but it really helps the group out.”

Have you had an amazing experience with a coach driver that you want to share? Get in touch with us by emailing