Step 1: Flag down the bus. Check to make sure there is either only one pram on the bus or no wheelchair (only 2 strollers are allowed per bus, and wheelchairs have priority – you must disembark if a person in a wheelchair is boarding the bus).
Step 2: Make eye contact with the bus driver and ask him to open the rear doors by pointing at your pram and pointing at the rear doors (Stokke Xplory users can go in the front door because the stroller is narrow enough).
Step 3: Go to the rear door, pop the front wheels up and ask fellow passengers to make way for you.
Step 4: Lift the back wheels up and navigate your pram to the front part (towards the bus driver) of the space that is allocated for you. This enables a second pram to squeeze into the space.
Step 5: Put the brake on. Also consider angling the pram. Be careful with extra bags weighing down the handles, I have seen more than one pram tip with the momentum of a starting-and-stopping bus.
Step 6: Let fellow passengers know that you want to get off in advance to give them time to clear space.
Step 7: Release break and get off the bus backwards (the reverse of how you got on). This is important! Don’t get cocky, read about the time I tried to get off the bus forwards here.
London buses are straightforward to navigate once you know how to do it. Buses are a lovely way to get around. They typically lull your baby to sleep, or give them lots to look at if you angle them so that they face the door.
It can be frustrating when bus after bus passes you, already full of prams, but the pros outweigh the cons. If you want to read more about riding on the buses in London here‘s the story about the first time we took Daniel on a bus. And this app is invaluable if you live in a city covered by the Citymapper app.
Do you have a good bus story? Is the etiquette the same where you are from? Do you have any further suggestions for parents on buses? We’d live to hear from you.