What's The Deal On Transport in Barbados?

BY Ashlee Constance

What's The Deal On Transport in Barbados?
Photography by Jesse Joeckel


Even though Barbados is small, to really explore at your convenience renting a car is the best option. Black owned companies like Prelude Car Rentals are pretty affordable and offer a great service. Public transport can be quite hit-and-miss depending on where you are. It’s worth noting that while there’s no blood alcohol concentration limit in Barbados, there is a law for driving without care and attention that counts as a serious offence. Don’t do it.

There are three different types of public transport: big blue buses, ZRs and yellow minibuses. Yellow minibuses have B licence plates and are quite large, normally with bright mustard yellow and blue stripes, the interiors are equally as colourful. ZR is the popular term used for the smallest type of minibus, they’re white with maroon stripes. Both are criticised for their loud music and tight seating. As a passenger you’ll need to know how to “make yourself small” to accommodate other passengers and allow them to squeeze in and out. For all public transport you’ll need to put your hand out at the bus stop, and when it’s time to disembark you’ll need to press the bell. The bells are normally at the side of the bus, if they don’t work simply shout “BUS STOP”. With the big blue buses, pay your fare on entering, with minibuses and ZRs, pay the conductor. 

Growing up in Barbados, I always preferred to take a minibus or ZR, they’re exciting and I loved the loud music. Now that I’m older, I prefer the AC buses and try to avoid the hustle and bustle. Travelling to and from Bridgetown from the south and west is very easy and only $3.50 US for the entire trip. The yellow buses and bigger buses go to the remote parts of the island while the ZRs take you in and around Bridgetown. All options are safe for everyone. If you decide to bus it around, keep the number of a trusted taxi driver with you in case you get lost or miss the bus at night.