‘DaBus’ App: A Review of the Oahu Version

October 13, 2013

Casie Azuma
21 September 2013
FD 1
Word Count= 947

Do you live on the island of Oahu? Do you need to catch the bus? Do you know which bus number to catch? Where the nearest bus stop is and how long the wait is? There is an app called “DaBus,” and it is free for the iPhone, Android and other models. [Thesis]It is easy to use and very useful to those who ride the bus (TheBus).[Thesis]



I do not have my driver’s license, so I catch TheBus. This transportation service on Oahu gets me to school, home and everywhere in between.

Most times I can rely on DaBus app for accurate arrival and departure times. At every bus stop there is a 2, 3, or 4 digit number identifying the bus stop. In the app, I press “Search for a Bus Stop” and plug a number into the search “engine.” When the bus stop appears, I tap on it and add it to favorites so that I can find the bus stop number for future use.

DaBus is an internet based app with a new and unique real-time arrival and departure feature. Unfortunately, not all buses are equipped with a Global Positioning System (GPS). In these rare occasions when the buses do not have GPS tracking, you would have to rely on TheBus brochures or website at thebus.org for estimated arrival and departure times. There is always hope that the buses are running on time. The bus driver, traffic lights, and traffic are a few unforeseen circumstances that may cause the bus to have any variations in arrival and departure times. Some bus drivers arrive faster and some take their time, therefore delaying the departure and arrival times. This can cause extensive waiting or even the possibility of chasing or missing the bus.

If you were wondering where the bus is and it has GPS tracking, then you can tap on the bus number and time slot for its estimated time of arrival and you will see a solid as well as a dotted line. The solid means that it passed those bus stops and is getting closer to your stop. The dotted means it’s on its way. There is an approximate time on the top of the screen with the bus number and how much longer it could take to get to your stop. It has an icon for your bus stop (a red picture of a bus stop sign) and the upcoming bus, which is green and in the shape of a “chat” icon.

DaBus has an enormous variation of reviews. On Apple’s iTunes page,  the reviews range from positive to extremely negative. Aly Keys wrote, “This app is great! I love the bus app!” Katharine Low wrote, “With the new updated version that was released today (Friday, August 31) there’s still issues: the map of finding nearby bus stops- tapping on the icon doesn’t give the stop id number.” Bosco76, who I think was having a bad day or possibly downloaded a different app, wrote, “This app is utterly worthless, no time tables, and with the latest ‘upgrade’ made an almost useless app utterly worthless.”

There are many skeptical inquires about DaBus. One of my classmates, Baruela, asked, “What exactly is DaBus? Is it an app for bus schedules around Oahu? Can you use this app for different islands too. Or is there specific apps for the place you live?”

To answer these questions, I’d say, “DaBus” is Pidgin or slang for “the bus.” I am not sure if the app is for just the Oahu schedules, but I know you can find the Oahu schedule online at thebus.org. Unfortunately, I do not know if there is an app available for the Outer Islands or the mainland.

One of my classmates, Bonilla, said that the topic of choice to review DaBus was a “Great choice and very appropriate, especially when considering Oahu traffic. I think it’s crazy to think that our city is ranked #2 when it comes to traffic (Los Angeles is #1). I didn’t even know there was a bus app. I love how this app is so specific to our needs here. I’m sure that there are other similar apps for other islands. It’s amazing to see how society has become so dependent on technology. I let my GPS tell me where to go instead of reading a map.”

Another important question would be: “How much do you pay to catch the bus?” Well, adult fees are $2.50 and $1.25. Both fees are one way, but you can always ask for a transfer after you paid. Be warned that the bus drivers do not give change, so please be sure to have dollar bills and coins. There are also monthly, yearly u-passes for those attending colleges and universities and all kinds of other passes of varying monetary value. You can visit thebus.org for more information on that.

DaBus is very useful for the person who relies on the bus as one of their modes of transportation. I would suggest to everyone to map out your bus route, the number(s) of the buses to catch, and the bus stop locations in the event that something happens to your car because you never know what can happen. It is better to be safe and to know alternate routes as well as modes of transportation in case of emergencies.

Works Cited

DaBus: The Oahu Bus App by City and County of Honolulu. Apple Inc (2013).  [ONLINE] Available at: https://itunes.apple.com/US/app/id503701268?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D4. [Last Accessed 12 September 2013].

Baruela, Chazaray-Ethan. “Re: Paper 1: “DaBus” App (oahu)” Online posting. 6 September 2013. Laulima Discussion. 13 September 2013.

Bonilla, Sheena. “Re: Paper 1: “DaBus” App (oahu)” Online posting. 7 September 2013. Laulima Discussion. 13 September 2013.

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