If you plan on doing any traveling outside to the city that you flew into during you stay in the Dominican Republic, you are likely to need to know about the various tour buses. First thing to know is “Tour Buses” is a little misleading. Even though some of the bus companies like Caribe Tours have the word tour in them, that does not mean they are guided tours. This is just transportation from one location to the next.

That doesn’t mean there are no tour companies in the DR, you just need to make sure of what they are offering before you book. There are some great companies offering excursions and we plan on hitting a bunch of then as time goes on. We’ll be posting reviews of the companies as we try them.

Especially if you fly into Santo Domingo or Santiago, you are likely to take one of these buses to get to your vacation destination. These are the Bus companies to choose from:

  • Caribe Tours 809-221-4422
  • Expreso Vegano
  • Expreso Bavaro 809-682-9670
  • Metro Expreso 809-227-0101
  • Prieto Tours
    • Santo Domingo 809-685-0102
    • Puerto Plata 809-586-5280
    • Punta Cana 809-221-1335
    • Samana 809-240-6417
  • Terra Bus

I have used mostly Caribe Tours and Expreso Vegano. The buses are clean with very comfortable seats, air conditioned and sometimes have TV. To give you an idea of prices from La Vega to Santo Domingo is about 170 Pesos ($4.70 USD), from La Vega to Sosua is about the same. Buses leave any where from once an hour at the larger stations like Santo Domingo, La Vega, Santiago, and Puerto Plato to once a day from the smaller stops.

This main North/South bus follows this route Cabarete – Sosua – Puerto Plata – Santiago – La Vega – Santo Domingo and then back again. If you plan on traveling the full route, plan on spending most of the day doing it.

When you get into a public car and want to go to one of these bus stations you get the drivers attention by calling him “Chofer” which sounds kind of like “show-fair” this means Chauffeur. When you have his attention you can then say “Parada de Caribe Tours” substituting whatever bus line you plan on using. All of the public cars know where these are. It really helps if you get a book that will help you with how the vowel sounds are made, this will greatly help having them understand what you say. In the larger tourist towns this is less of an issue many of the people speak at least some English.

Small luggage can be brought into the bus and stored in an overhead compartment. Suit cases and larger items should be stored in the outside compartments below the buses. These compartments are only opened at the main terminals although the bus will likely stop in many other smaller locations. When you get to a main terminal it is a good idea to have someone get out and watch you bags. The bus companies open the terminals and let people take their own bags out. They DO NOT keep track of who owns what, so someone can easily take your bag if you are not watching.