Over the past few years, there has been an exceptional rise in the online bus ticketing industry. Major travel players are stepping into the online bus ticketing market by offering user-friendly and smart apps. One of the leading bus booking apps is redBus with a customer base of over 20 million and a strong network of 2500 bus operators. This platform provides a wide range of services to customers like seat selection, AC/Non AC bus, Type of seats, amenities, rescheduling, and much more. Recently redBus has added features to hire a bus and even pool a ride (Find a ride/ Give a ride). Here is the guide to developing a bus booking app like redbus.
Features and Functionalities of a Bus Booking App
1. Social Media Signup
Nowadays, any app you develop requires a social media sign-up and login because it is the easiest way for a user to log into the app. Social media integrations create a better user experience that directly leads to more sales & bookings. Social media logins such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, Apple ID are some of the musts to have plugins in an app.
2. Search & Booking Engine
Bus booking apps are required to have a faster and easy search and booking engine that would allow customers to enter their pickup city, drop off the city, and date of departure and get the bus results.
3. Sorting & Filtering
Sorting & filtering makes customers booking jobs easy & fast. The customer applies filters as per need and sorts the results and tada, they get their matching result. Various filter options in bus booking apps are time, bus type, boarding & dropping points, bus operators, amenities, and more.
4. Seat Selection
This is the main feature of the app that will let users know about the availability of seats. Users should be able to manually select seats so there has to be an indicator on the seats that shows its availability by either color codes or labels on it. The app should fetch real-time seat availability as the customers love to travel with their preferred seats.
redBus offers a feature that allows users to have the flexibility for rescheduling a bus. It asks for the booking ID and email ID of the user and this request is manually handled from the backend. Based on some parameters the request is accepted which then allows the user to change their booking.
6. Refer & Earn
It is always good to have a feature that allows users to earn by just referring to the app to their connections. Who would not want to make money by traveling! This feature is essential from a marketing and customer retention perspective.
7. Payment Gateways
Getting more payment options while the booking process, adds a feather in the cap for users. Users should be able to choose from multiple payment options like GooglePay, Debit/Credit cards, Wallets, Net banking, etc. It is important to provide secure payment options to customers while giving these options.
8. Ratings & Reviews
Ratings & Reviews provides extra information on the bus conditions, services, and bus staff that is legitimate. Users tend to know the reviews from other people even before purchasing a product or making a booking. This feature not only helps the users but also the product owners to know their bus operators more deeply.
9. Interactive & User-Friendly UI
Booking apps are required to have a user-friendly UI, especially for seat selection, results listing and boarding & pickup location screens that clearly show the information to users, and hence they are not misunderstood or they do not overlook any important info.
10. Confirmations & e-Tickets
Booking apps must have integration with SMS and should have a feature to auto send emails to users about the confirmation with a Booking Number and E-tickets of the booking.
11. Real-Time Bus Tracking
The most important feature of the bus booking app is to have a GPS integration that would let users track the Live location of the bus so they can estimate the time of bus arrival and know the actual location of the bus at any point of time. This feature also improves the bus operators going off the track and hence maintaining punctuality.
12. Chat Window:
A chat window allows users to directly contact the bus operators in case of emergency or queries. It is smarter to have an AI-driven chatbot for providing a better customer experience.
Features of the Admin Panel and Bus Operator
Advanced Features of a Bus Booking App
1. Hire a Vehicle
- One-way/ Round Trips
- Pick up & Drop off Cities
- Pick up & Drop off Dates and Time
- Number of Travelers
Depending on the number of travelers the search should smartly show the results for a bus/car/Volvo etc. Users can add a driver if needed for their journey. This feature is highly needed in today’s situation where people want to travel with their convenience, comfort, and safety.
2. Pool Ride
Bus booking apps should implement this feature that finds a riding companion for them in the same route while traveling. It helps users to save time and split the traveling amount among themselves.
3. Sharing Travel Details
It is important to keep travelers safe while traveling so the app should support functionality that lets users share their travel details with friends or family. They should be notified about all the routes the vehicle is moving and should be able to track the Live location of the vehicle.
Benefits of Bus Booking App
- Bus booking apps let users choose from a variety of buses.
- The app helps users to choose their preference for seats, types of bus, select the nearest pickup and drop-off locations, and select from a wide range of prices.
- Allows live bus tracking.
- Pay using multiple payment options.
- Ease of registration by social media logins/signups.
Cost Factors Affecting to Developing a Bus Booking App
Bus Booking app costs depend completely on the features and functionalities to be offered in the app. Factors that affect the development cost of the app are:
- App Features
- Admin Panel Features
- Bus Operator App Features
- Technology to be Used for Development
- App Platform (Android, iOS, or both)
- App Size
- Advanced Features (Geolocation, Data Sync, AI)
If you are running a travel business, you must take it to the next level by developing an online bus booking app that will help increase your customer base and sales. With over 8 years of experience in the travel industry, our clients consider us the best mobile app development company in India and USA. We have grasped a pool of knowledge and skills in developing travel apps and provide client satisfaction. Contact us to share your business requirements and get a quote. We will not only assist you but we will also provide rich and smart solutions for your business to excel.