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Minibus Leasing for Education

Minibus Leasing for Education

With the need for on-site and off-site education, school minibuses are an absolute necessity in any educational institution; they are crucial for transport and help both teachers and students take a break from boring in-class activities and allow them to experience an exciting day full of learning outside of classroom walls - whether it’s a trip to the National History Museum in central London, sporting fixtures, a trip to the theatre, or even a trip to the seaside.

I sat down with our new - and first ever - Account Manager for Education, Sharon Gilpin, to discuss the benefits of minibus leasing for schools and how Rivervale can add something unique to a market that's crying out for innovation. Ismael Soliman reports…

How do schools go about making an enquiry?

The first step for making an enquiry could be to ask another school where they got theirs so word of mouth, Google is another good place to start, also when we make contact with schools we help by sending out offers and keeping them up to date with relevant news, offers and availability.

Why Should schools lease?

A minibus is big purchase for a school so leasing is a way of having Low Monthly payments, when leasing a bus with a maintenance package you have peace of mind knowing your monthly cost won’t change, so it’s perfect for budgeting which is fundamental for schools today.

Safety Features of minibuses

The Minibuses all come with emergency exits including an escape hatch in the roof, First Aid kits should always be available and supplied with every bus. But at the end of the day, you the end user are responsible for ensuring that the minibus you are driving is safe and legal. Conduct a pre-drive check every day you drive the minibus. For more information, you can visit the website.

Interior and exterior features of a minibus

  • Day running lights
  • Power windows 1 shot up/down
  • 8-way adjustable driver’s seat with armrest
  • Dual Passenger with under-seat storage
  • Fold out front passenger seat table
  • Glovebox with A4 fle storage
  • 2 x 12V power points
  • Overhead stowage console
  • Front & rear air conditioning
  • Cruise Control with Adjustable speed limiter
  • Radio/CD with Ford SYNC and Emergency Assistance
  • Leather-trimmed 4-spoke steering wheel
  • Leather-trimmed gearshift knob
  • Driver seat lumbar adjust
  • Lockable glovebox
  • Privacy glass from B-pillar rearwards
  • Reclinable rear seats with armrests
  • Trip computer
  • Wide bodyside mouldings
  • Power side step
  • Integrated rear step
  • Auto Start-Stop System
  • ESC/ABS/Hill Start Assist
  • Curve Control
  • Emergency Brake Warning
  • Full size spare wheel
  • Ford Easy-Fuel capless refuelling
  • Euro VI emissions compliant
  • Front fog lights
  • Power heated folding mirrors
  • Automatic headlights
  • Rain-sensing wipers
  • Heated windscreen
  • Power heated folding mirrors
  • Projector style headlights with static cornering lights
  • Front and rear parking sensors


Minibuses come in a variety of different seating plans but the options are 8/9 seat , 11/12 seat, 14/15 seat and the 17 seat. All buses have something to offer a school but from experience the 17 seat option has always been the most popular, I don’t seen this changing.

Midas Training

Minibus Driver Awareness Scheme, is a nationally recognised standard for the assessment and training of minibus drivers. You’ll find most if not all schools can and will get this training for the drivers and teachers who will have a need to drive the bus. This shouldn’t be confused with D1 training as this is a whole other area of the minibus licence requirement.

Can I drive a 17 seat Minibus

Under certain circumstances, drivers without a full category D1 entitlement may drive a minibus within the UK provided that it is not being used for hire or reward (ie provided there’s no payment from or on behalf of the passengers).

Those who passed their driving test before 1 January 1997 automatically received category D1(101) (not for hire or reward) entitlement. So school staff with such a licence can drive a minibus carrying up to 16 passengers with no maximum weight limit.

Those who passed a driving test on or after 1 January 1997 may drive a minibus with a gross vehicle weight not exceeding 3.5 tonnes, and not for hire and reward. People who passed a driving test on or after 1 January 1997 may drive a minibus with a gross vehicle weight not exceeding 3.5 tonnes, and not for hire and reward - see for more information.

Non-profit-making organisations including schools may provide transport for their own members or for the local community on a hire and reward basis under a section 19 permit - click here for more information.

Why Rivervale

Rivervale look after each and everyone of their clients, but so do some of our Competitors, Rivervale have access to a large variety of funders, and so do some of our competitors. The difference is we care and we want your school to come back again and again. As a School Governor myself I know that the leasing of a minibus is an exciting time for any school, the acquisition of a bus can take a long time to get agreed by Governors, Head and not to mention BUDGETS, Rivervale want to make this process as painless as possible, your bus will have everything required to get this bus working for the kid, teachers and parents in your school.

We continually have lots of great 5 star reviews on both Trustpilot and Autotrader. Find out more about our leasing prices by visiting our minibus leasing page.

How important are minibuses for schools?

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