Charter a Bus

Schools can use the FAMIS Portal to charter service on a coach bus for round-trip transportation of students and adults on school trips lasting no more than six days and five nights, within the five boroughs, intrastate and out of state from all schools and offices under the jurisdiction of the New York City Department of Education.

Schools should go to the FAMIS Portal to determine the least expensive vendor for their trip and issue a purchase order (see below). The contracted coach bus vendors are:

Academy Express, LLC
111 Paterson Avenue
Hoboken, NJ 07030
Phone: (201) 420-7000, Option 1 Ext. 2236
Fax: (201) 420-8087
President: Francis Tedesco

J & R Tours
80 Edison Avenue
MT. Vernon, NY 10550
Phone: (914) 668-5050
Fax: (914) 668-8899
President: James J. & Ralph J. DiDonato

Suburban Trails, Inc.
750 Somerset Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Phone: (732) 249-1100 Ext. 231
Fax: (732) 249-1024
General Manager: Scott Sprengel

Accord Bus LLC
755 Clinton Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231
Phone: (212) 973-8282
Fax: (516) 504-3029
Prseident: Sofia Fayer

S & J Tour & Bus, Inc.
185 Canal Street, #402
New York, NY 10013
Phone: (718) 921-4246
Fax: (718) 921-1567
President: Mona Jiang

Note: Please be advised that a new Vendor Evaluation Application is available for rating vendor performance. You and your staff are encouraged to check completed evaluations and ratings in the Vendor Evaluation Application before purchasing professional services; to access the application, click on “Miscellaneous” and then “Vendor Evaluation”. It is recommended that you check the vendor rating before each purchase decision, even if no evaluation or rating was previously available.

Use the FAMIS Portal to Charter a Coach Bus

To charter a coach bus for trips lasting no more than six days and five nights:
  1. Plan your trip.
  2. Access the FAMIS Portal
  3. From the Purchasing/Payments dropdown menu, click Purchasing > Contracted > e-Catalog > Coach Bus.
  4. Enter your origin and destination as prompted. Use MapQuest or Google Maps for an approximate distance calculation. The portal will prompt you to double the one-way trip for round trip miles. If the trip has multiple legs (school to zoo to museum to school) do not double the miles. Round the mileage to the nearest whole number.
  5. The portal will identify the least expensive vendors in order.
  6. Call the first vendor to reserve your trip. (Be sure to save your project while you make the call, otherwise you will have to re-enter the purchase order.)
  7. If the first vendor confirms, then issue your purchase order via the portal.
  8. If the first vendor declines, the vendor will need to provide evidence that they have allocated ten (10) buses to other Department of Education trips. If the vendor can do so, then go to the next vendor to reserve the bus. Each succeeding vendor is more expensive than the prior, so be sure to go in order.
  9. Verify need or cost effectiveness of an additional driver, if the vendor recommends it.

Note: Schools may change or cancel a trip at no cost provided the change or cancellation is received by the vendor by 3:00 PM on the day before the scheduled trip. If a change or cancellation is received by the vendor after 3:00 PM on the day before the scheduled trip, schools will be issued a credit for service of an equal amount that can be used at a later date. If a cancellation occurs while the trip is in progress the vendor will be paid a prorated amount based upon the Purchase Order amount and the actual duration of the trip.

For assistance call the Portal Help Desk at (718) 935-4444. If your trip is for more than six days and five nights, then it is outside the scope of the contracts and you need to:
  • Solicit bids from all of the contracted coach vendors listed above (based on the terms and conditions of their contracts under B2815, including the provision of an OPT-certified driver).
  • Select a vendor.
  • Issue the purchase order through the usual channels not the FAMIS portal.

Charter a Yellow Bus

Services for these trips are not covered by any contract.

*If none of the contracted vendors are available on the date of your scheduled trip, then the school is required to obtain three competitive bids from different vendors and follow the guidelines below.

Competitive Bid Guidelines

Schools must use vendors rated satisfactory by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Click here to access the U.S. Department of Transportation passenger carrier safety ratings.

Every purchase order must include the following:

  • The driver of the charter bus must be 19-A certified by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. The driver must present a NYSDMV Abstract of Driving Record indicating that their 19A Status is Active-School-Qualified.
  • The Abstract must be presented at the time of service and the print date must be within 3 days of the transportation request.
  • The document must be initialed by a school official confirming that he or she has seen the 19A Certification.

The contractor must agree to provide the following insurance:

  • The charter bus provider is responsible for obtaining general liability coverage and automobile liability insurance coverage for personal injury (including, but not limited to death, sickness, disease and impairment) and property damage, caused directly or indirectly by any act(s) or commission or omission of the Contractor. In addition, the charter bus provider must have Worker's Compensastion Insurance and Employer's Liability Insurance in the amounts prescribed by law.
The liability limits for commercial general liability insurance and automobile liability insurance shall be not less than:
  • For commercial general liability insurance, a combined single limit coverage of not less than One Million Dollars ($1,000,000.00) per occurence. General aggregate and Products-COMP/OP AGG.
  • For automobile liability insurance, a combined single limit per occurence of not less than Five Million Dollars ($5,000,000)).

If the charter bus provider has an umbrella excess liability insurance policy that includes coverage for the primary commercial general liability insurance policy and the automobile insurance policy, flexibility is possible for the primary policy limits, provided, the total coverage is not less than the foregoing amounts.

Schools must check for proof of insurance. The company must provide an ACORD 25 Certificate of Liability Insurance with the DOE listed as the certificate holder. Schools must also ensure that the company they choose is licensed to provide the type of service they are requesting and the school official in charge should verify that:

  • The driver of the vehicle has the appropriate license and a company-issued identification card.
  • The vehicle has a valid registration and DOT sticker.
  • The capacity of the bus, as indicated by the numbers located by the entry door, is sufficient to transport the number of people who are taking the trip.

Schools may contact their ISC Contract Administrator for assistance.