Definition of bus in English:



  • 1A large motor vehicle carrying passengers by road, typically one serving the public on a fixed route and for a fare:

    [as modifier] ‘a bus service’
    • ‘The major polluting vehicles are trucks, buses and light commercial vehicles, all using diesel.’
    • ‘The new bridge will allow high vehicles, including buses, to pass underneath for the first time.’
    • ‘We were told by the Council that only buses and residents' vehicles would be allowed up here but it's being used as a general diversion.’
    • ‘I waited in the city to catch my bus at the bus stop, which serviced 8 different bus routes.’
    • ‘And Councillor Skellett stressed it would mean there would be no extra cash to boost services for vulnerable people or for roads, buses or fire services.’
    • ‘I too have had much experience driving heavy vehicles and buses.’
    • ‘They claim the bumps impede the movement of emergency vehicles and buses, disturb neighbours and damage cars.’
    • ‘The colour-coded system is designed to encourage more people to use public transport by making bus services more frequent and routes more obvious.’
    • ‘The answer for Swindon is to reduce the cost of bus fares to make public transport more attractive.’
    • ‘The service will operate in a similar way to a bus service, with fares and timetables, but will be flexible enough to pick up passengers in a set area.’
    • ‘Lorries, buses and wide vehicles will be diverted on to the Millbrook roundabout while the work is carried out.’
    • ‘Big vehicles like buses and trucks must move into the extreme left lane.’
    • ‘The bus passengers were left abandoned on the side of the road.’
    • ‘Current regulations ban all vehicles other than buses and bicycles from using the roads at all times.’
    • ‘The State Road Transport Corporation is running extra buses to carry the passengers.’
    • ‘The bus servicing the route has also been blocked on more than one occasion.’
    • ‘They have come in rented buses and trucks, vehicles jammed to bursting with everything they can possibly carry.’
    • ‘The bus service on these routes is temporary until the taxi operations get back to normality.’
    • ‘The other two will cover heavy goods vehicles and buses.’
    • ‘The heavy vehicles including lorries and buses make their condition worse.’
    bus, minibus, van
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1informal, dated A car, aircraft, or other vehicle.
      vehicle, means of transport, method of transport
      View synonyms
  • 2Computing
    A distinct set of conductors carrying data and control signals within a computer system, to which pieces of equipment may be connected in parallel.

    • ‘Systems described may include any number of individual buses within their bus arrangements.’
    • ‘Connecting to the system bus is a nice first step, but we want to be able to send messages from a well-known address.’
    • ‘If the drive were the only component connected to the bus, then there would be no problem.’
    • ‘That gives us the total number of loads: three for the system bus, two for the processor, one for the chipset.’
    • ‘The PCI bus has emerged as a bottleneck between the processor and the network.’
    • ‘It also gives each processor access to the full bandwidth of the system bus.’
    • ‘How is it that even buses in the computer have conductors?’
    • ‘To date, chip designers have focused on connecting processors to cache memory to counter the latency of the system bus.’
    • ‘This information is acquired by the chip and can be reported to the processor through a serial bus.’
    • ‘Surely, we asked, no one would be running parallel buses in ten years time?’
    • ‘Bus lengths are limited for the round trip time of the signal on the bus.’
    • ‘The chip's system bus will only switch on those elements needed to process data.’
    • ‘In each bus directory is a file for every different USB device connected to the bus.’
    • ‘The architecture includes plural bus masters, each connected to its own bus.’
    • ‘They are identical with the exception of the system bus frequency and multiplier.’
    • ‘The memory frequency can be set to different rates depending on the system bus frequency.’
    • ‘By spreading the pulses across the spectrum, you can deliver extremely high data transfer rates - think of the higher speeds offered by older parallel buses over serial buses.’
    • ‘PCs consist of a set of chips, including the CPU, graphics and keyboard controller, all connected by buses.’
    • ‘Each set of terminals has the same set of signal assignments of a parallel bus implemented by metal lines in the board.’
    • ‘A computer system includes a bus interface with a plurality of data buffers.’


  • 1[with object and adverbial of direction] Transport in a communal road vehicle:

    ‘staff were bussed in and out of the factory’
    • ‘Things then came to a head when a motion was made to bus the high school students from River Hebert to Amherst.’
    • ‘Eventually we will see kids being bused out of the town.’
    • ‘Moreover, the children are bussed out of their neighbourhood each day to a school of the father's choosing.’
    • ‘But let's be honest: no one buses their kids to daycare.’
    • ‘Increasingly, children are bused to huge, anonymous campuses on the outskirts of town.’
    • ‘They also say they will avoid local services being overburdened by bussing the youngsters into Hull.’
    • ‘Along with children being bussed in and dropped off by their parents, hundreds of students walk or ride their bicycles to school each day because the school is that close to home.’
    • ‘The former Secretary of State for Education said the only other option was to bus children across the city, which had already been tried and failed.’
    • ‘They had looked at bussing children in, increasing the catchment area and even future house building.’
    • ‘The majority of the busing costs in this province are spent on busing children long distances and along non-pedestrian routes.’
    • ‘So, I'm still bussing the girls back to their schools in Barnes - can you believe it?’
    • ‘The result is that dwindling numbers of children are bussed to distant schools where they mingle with others who live many miles away.’
    • ‘Most children are bussed in or driven to school.’
    • ‘Children are bussed around Ealing daily with military precision and retrieved from various sporting sites.’
    • ‘No other county town buses its teenagers on a daily basis to schools north, south, east and west simply because its own institutions cannot cope.’
    • ‘It is not inconceivable to imagine a scenario where youngsters are bussed from one end of Glasgow to the other to see a concert.’
    • ‘The three school-age children are bused 28-kilometres to the nearest school - when the road is open.’
    • ‘We should not have to bus our children to schools in other areas and as long as we are still talking about how to finance our schools we are failing.’
    • ‘Schools could be federally funded to bus children to exercise at clubs.’
    • ‘The schools have even bused kids to Washington to demonstrate against ‘tax cuts for the rich.’’
    1. 1.1[no object, with adverbial of direction] Travel by bus:
      ‘the priest bussed in from a neighbouring parish’
      • ‘I bussed to Kennington, from where I caught the Northern Line to Embankment.’
      • ‘The heat had not subsided but I managed to bus my way across town to Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood where I would be staying.’
      • ‘The Celtic League is a great idea, but the thought of our players busing up and down to Wales every other week after Christmas fills me with dread.’
      • ‘They have annoying bitty schedules that demand endless driving, busing or pushing prams, leaving very little time to do anything of substance in between.’
      • ‘By doing it I mean he is bussing to a zillion cities but only spending 5 minutes in each one.’
      • ‘So Bails and I bussed to Wood Green.’
      • ‘After three days of walking or bussing to the station, though, I'm almost looking forward to fighting my way through the traffic and the swearing drivers tomorrow morning.’
    2. 1.2North American Transport (a child of one ethnic group) to a school where another group is predominant, in an attempt to promote racial integration.
      • ‘We are still busing kids all over town - none of the parents of any race are happy with it and our school system has a huge deficit.’
      • ‘And in response to the Ouseley report which highlights segregation in schools, Mr Blunkett also criticised bussing children across cities to ensure a mixed education saying it had been tried before in Bradford.’
      • ‘Desegregation becomes busing, which becomes integration, which becomes diversity.’
      • ‘But I received notice that I would instead be bused to previously all-white Grimsley High, one of the largest and most affluent public schools in the state.’
      • ‘The school district simply bused students around, but provided little help in integrating the schools once they became desegregated.’
      • ‘Many stem from busing to achieve racial integration from 1974 to 1995.’
      • ‘Roma children travel to integrated schools by bus, but white children are not bussed to Roma neighborhoods.’
      • ‘While Brown did not prescribe busing for racial balance, the logic of its argument led inescapably to that conclusion, even if no one thought of it in 1954.’
      • ‘According to the Court, busing schoolchildren to achieve greater racial balance in individual schools is a constitutionally proper remedy in districts burdened by the effects of past or present de jure segregation.’
      • ‘During the 1970s and '80s, school districts relied heavily on busing to achieve racial balance.’
      • ‘If it requires them to bus Catholic kids to Protestant areas and vice versa - like in the old Deep South - then so be it.’
      • ‘These were quickly adopted as a playground by the hordes of school children bused to the show.’
      • ‘I was bussed to predominantly white schools, but I shielded myself from bitterness.’
      • ‘With the decrease in busing to achieve school integration and the overwhelming return to neighborhood schools, where we live matters.’
      • ‘Others felt that blacks had to bear most of the burden of being disproportionately bused outside their community.’
  • 2North American [with object] Remove (dirty plates and dishes) from a table in a restaurant or cafeteria.

    • ‘On a canvassing run with a union shop steward who buses dishes at a local restaurant, the going was rough.’
    • ‘Eating in means busing your tray to a windowless back room outfitted with children's school chairs and communal tables pushed up against sponge-painted walls.’
    • ‘When I stopped there for lunch last week, I recognized practically everybody in the restaurant, from the guy who greeted me at the door to the guy who bused the dishes.’
    • ‘I bussed her plates then walked back over to Matt.’
    • ‘Both groups tended to treat cafeteria workers like me, the Puerto Ricans who bused trays and washed dishes in the dining halls, and the blacks who cleaned the rooms and hallways as servants or worse.’
    1. 2.1 Remove dirty plates and dishes from (a table).
      • ‘How else could consumers possibly have been brainwashed into bussing their own tables at fast food restaurants?’
      • ‘He and his special sweetie are spending Valentine's Day evening bussing tables.’
      • ‘Margot worked at the restaurant bussing tables, Martin worked at the bowling alley and Fred mopped the floor at the laundromat.’
      • ‘OK, Brian France went too far when he had the drivers and crews busing tables.’
      • ‘I started to be regular waiter there, I bused my own tables so I didn't have to split tips and after a while I used to even cook, now and then.’
      • ‘Turning around to bus other tables, I suddenly felt sick to my stomach.’
      • ‘I tried to get them jobs bussing tables, sorting clothes for Am Vets, and being Christmas elves for an all-ethnic United Colors of Benetton catalog shoot.’
      • ‘She assured them that their food would be arriving soon and moved off to bus another table.’
      • ‘I wore it while bussing the outside tables, and graced everybody with bubbles.’


Early 19th century: shortening of omnibus.