Transit Services offers conventional (Thunder Bay Transit) and specialized (Lift Plus Specialized Transit) public transportation services within the City. 

Thunder Bay Transit serves our citizens with a fleet of forty-eight 40-foot low-floor accessible conventional buses, running 17 routes and operating 19 hours a day, 365 days per year. Lift Plus is an on-demand specialized service operating twenty-three (23) high-floor accessible buses for passengers who are unable to use Thunder Bay Transit for all or part of their trips, due to a disability.

We believe that everyone should be able to get where they need to go.

Transit drivers

Thunder Bay Transit drivers start their shifts at Transit's main office on Fort William Road and end their shifts at the main office, Waterfront Terminal or City Hall. Each location has basic amenities such as lunchroom and washroom facilities that provide an opportunity to interact with coworkers and administration. Much of the Driver's time is spent on the bus they are assigned for their shift. Our buses are all well maintained for the comfort and safety of both passengers and the driver.

Transit drivers are skilled professionals who provide safe, courteous and accessible public transit service. Transit drivers are required to work varying shifts throughout the day. This may include split shifts where you would have two or three pieces of work in one day. Days off will vary from week to week and may not even be two days in a row.

Due to the nature of the working conditions of a Transit Driver, there could be an impact on both your personal and family life.

Driver responsibilities

Here are some of the responsibilities of a driver.

  • Move passengers safely according to Thunder Bay Transit's routes and time schedules or on Lift's daily schedule.
  • Drive transit vehicles in a safe manner in heavy traffic and all weather conditions.
  • Make sure that the equipment on the bus is operational and report non-functioning equipment. Equipment on the bus can include on-board electronics, wheelchair securement, grab bars, stanchions, handholds, ramps, lifts and seatbelts.
  • Collect proper bus fare from all passengers and check the validity of transfers/passes. You are a fare reminder.
  • Provide good customer service.
  • Communicate with your supervisor if you are not on schedule or you need assistance with your bus or your passengers.
  • Complete all required reports such has pre-trip bus inspections and incident reports.
  • Follow all relevant laws and legislation such as the Highway Traffic Act and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.

Transit drivers work alone, without direct supervision, which requires a great deal of independence and responsibility. However, we work as a team to support each other. Transit drivers maintain radio communications with other drivers and their supervisors.

Compensation and benefits

As a new hire, you are not guaranteed any hours. On average, it could take drivers two to three years to move to a full-time or guaranteed-hours position, which is a minimum of 40 hours per week.

As a new driver working in a unionized environment, you should expect to work at least four days every week.

As of October 1, 2023, a driver trainee will be paid hourly at 71% of the starting Driver's rate (1st 6 months) during the training program. If successful in the training program, transit drivers are paid:

Step 1 (1st 6 Months): $23.23 per hour

Step 2 (2nd 6 Months): $26.14 per hour

Step 3 (Full-time rate): $29.04 per hour (maximum)

** During training, an Operator - Conventional Transit will be paid the minimum wage established in the Employment Standards Act or the training rate above, whichever is greater.

Transit Services offers a competitive total compensation package when a relief driver attains the position of full-time driver that includes the following:

  • Extended Health and Dental;
  • Short and Long Term Disability;
  • Life Insurance;
  • Retirement Savings Plan, with employer matching contributions;
  • Membership in the Amalgamated Transit Union (required - Union dues are deducted bi-weekly);
  • Paid vacation based on years of service; and
  • All benefits are subject to established waiting periods as per the current Collective Agreement.

Transit driver self-assessment

The questions below may help you decide if this job is right for you. Complete the questionnaire to see if you should be a Transit Driver. 

  1. Would you be comfortable operating a 40-foot bus in all types of weather and traffic conditions?
  2. Would you enjoy interacting with people all day?
  3. Are you comfortable assisting and serving a wide variety of passengers?
  4. Are you able to sit for hours at a time?
  5. Are you willing to work a schedule that would include weekends, holidays and late evenings, by yourself?
  6. Are you willing to work hours that will vary and may include split shifts (a break in between one shift and the next in the same day)?
  7. Are you willing to wear a uniform and maintain a professional appearance as part of your job?
  8. Are you comfortable assisting passengers who may not be happy with the service provided?
  9. Are you comfortable working, often with no direct supervision, at all hours on your own?
  10. Do you have or are you qualified to obtain a "C" class driver's license?
  11. Would you accept a job where your choice of schedule and days off are based solely on seniority?
  12. Can you successfully pass a Police Records Check, a work fitness test and the Ministry of Transportation physical?

Self-assessment scoring

If you answered NO to more than two questions, this may not be the right job for you.

If you answered MAYBE to more than two questions, this may not be the right job for you.

If you answered YES to eight or more of these questions, this might be the right job for you

Contact Us