Chicken Bus Q & A

Wondering about chicken buses? Already know about them and want to learn more? Read on…I promise that most or all of your questions will be answered….

What is a chicken bus?

It’s a special bus, often formerly a school bus, that’s decorated in the brightest colors on the PhotoShop spectrum and used in various countries in Latin American and especially in certain Central American countries. It contains people, produce and sometimes, chickens (often living ones.)

“A chicken bus is an American school bus dressed to the nines; beautifully painted but a pig of a vehicle,” according to one website.

What’s it like to ride on a chicken bus?

It’s hard to explain and best experienced, but I’ll give it a shot. It’s more fun than taking Greyhound and in some ways, better. The ride can be bumpy and scary, depending on how treacherous the roads are. It can also be sort of fun…in a way. There’s usually some sort of Latin music blaring through the speakers and if an overnight bus, there may even be a video.


How often are there chickens on the bus? And how/where do they sit?

I’ve been on at least 50 of these buses–if not more–and have only seen actual chickens a handful of times. Usually, they’re sitting quietly in the lap of their owner (like a child might with a parent). Sometimes, but rarely, they have their own seat. At other times, they’re in a burlap sack of sorts.


Do they pay to ride the bus?

Funny question there! (Oh yeah–I wrote it!) No, they do not.

Where are chicken buses found mostly?

To be honest, they can be found in most developing countries around the world. (They’re called by other names there, however.) There’s a high concentration of them in Latin America and Guatemala and El Salvador are known for having some of the craziest ones in terms of color scheme and decor.

Do you have to ride on a chicken bus to have a Chicky Bus experience or epiphany?

No, it’s not necessary. You can have an enlightened moment anywhere when you’re traveling (or even if you aren’t). Still, it’s worth riding on one of these buses just once in your life. It’s fun (sort of), treacherous (make sure the driver is good) and unique (you won’t see the same folks on a regular bus). Overall, it’s a great way to get in touch with the culture–the real people (often indigenous, but not always) of the place you’re visiting.

Is this website dedicated to chicken buses? Why is it called Chicky Bus?

Chicky Bus is just the name of the site and of a chapter in the book I’m writing. It’s part of a concept and a philosophy of mine about travel and how self-discovery can happen anyway. I like chicken buses, but don’t necessarily love them. :)

Want to learn more about me?

Click here to learn about me and my travel philosophy. To find out where I’ve been and to read some other fun facts, click here.

Want to lose a few pounds on your next trip?

Check out the chicken bus workout. You can now burn fat and build muscle…from the convenience of your broken seat. No gym needed!

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