COVID-19 Travel Guide
Learn more ›

Find bus tickets from Chicago to Des Moines

Lowest PricesWe work directly with hundreds of bus & train carriers to find the best available fares.
No Wanderu FeesWe never add any extra fees. We just make it easy to book your bus & train tickets.
Best Travel OptionsWe help you find & compare the best buses and trains in one place.

Journey Information

Chicago to Des Moines bus - cost & duration

Cheapest price$19.00
Shortest Duration7h 5m
Trips per day7
Bus lines2

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to travel by bus from Chicago to Des Moines during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Our bus partners have implemented several different policies to keep you safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. From limiting vehicle capacity to enhancing cleaning protocols and upgrading air filters, bus carriers are committed to maintaining a safe environment. For details on what each company is doing to ensure their fleet remains safe for travel, click here.

In addition, federal law requires all bus passengers to wear a face covering for the entire duration of the trip. Please make sure you are wearing a face mask or you may not be allowed to board the bus.

Please visit our COVID-19 Travel Guide for more information on all carrier policies and the latest travel advisories issued by every U.S. state, Canadian province, and European country.

How much is a bus ticket from Chicago to Des Moines?

Based on daily average prices in last 30 days, $20.00 was the low point for bus fares from Chicago to Des Moines. Buses from Des Moines to Chicago are similarly priced. Any tickets cheaper than $20.00 could be considered a great deal.

The best way to find cheap deals on bus tickets is by booking as early as possible, since most bus companies increase the price as the travel date approaches. You should book at least 24 days in advance. By doing so, you could save $34.13 on your ticket compared to booking at the last minute.

How long is the bus ride?

The bus usually takes around 8 hours and 46 minutes to cover the 309 miles (497 kilometers) from Chicago, IL to Des Moines, IA. However, the fastest bus only takes 7 hours and 5 minutes. The trip is definitely on the longer side, so plan to get comfortable on the bus. It's a good idea to bring water and snacks.

What is the busiest day of the week to travel by bus?

Tuesday is usually the day of the week when buses are busiest. If you are planning to travel on a Tuesday, you should make sure to book tickets well in advance as they may sell out.

On the other hand, Thursday is typically the least busy day for bus travel on this route. If you’re looking for a little extra space, a Thursday ticket is the way to go.

When do the earliest and latest buses leave Chicago?

The first bus leaves at 6:00am and the last bus leaves at 3:00pm. To see the times for all buses from Chicago to Des Moines, enter your specific travel dates in the search bar.

How many buses are there each day?

There are 7 scheduled buses that travel from Chicago to Des Moines every day, so you have a decent number of options to choose from. This includes 2 direct buses, where you can stay on the same bus without having to transfer to a connecting bus at any point during your trip.

What bus companies travel from Chicago to Des Moines?

There are a couple of bus lines that have daily service from Chicago, Illinois to Des Moines, Iowa. Of these two services, Greyhound usually offers more choice, with 4 bus trips per day.

BusDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Burlington Trailways38h 35m$41.14
Greyhound49h 7m$37.00

Book Burlington Trailways from Chicago to Des Moines from $37. There are 3 trips per day offered by Burlington Trailways from Chicago to Des Moines and you can expect on average to pay $41 for a Burlington Trailways ticket to Des Moines. In Chicago, Burlington Trailways departs to Des Moines from Bus Station - 630 W Harrison St, In Des Moines, Burlington Trailways arrives at Bus Station - 1501 2nd St, An average trip on Burlington Trailways from Chicago to Des Moines takes 8 hours and 35 minutes, while the fastest available Burlington Trailways trip will get you to Des Moines in 7 hours and 5 minutes, On weekends, Burlington Trailways offers 3 trips per day. A one way ticket costs $41 for a weekend trip to Des Moines.

Book Greyhound from Chicago to Des Moines from $19. There are 4 trips per day offered by Greyhound from Chicago to Des Moines and you can expect on average to pay $37 for a Greyhound ticket to Des Moines. In Chicago, Greyhound departs to Des Moines from Dan Ryan Bus Station and 2 other stations. In Des Moines, Greyhound arrives at Bus Station - 1501 2nd St, An average trip on Greyhound from Chicago to Des Moines takes 9 hours and 7 minutes, while the fastest available Greyhound trip will get you to Des Moines in 7 hours and 5 minutes, On weekends, Greyhound offers 4 trips per day. A one way ticket costs $38 for a weekend trip to Des Moines.

Where does the bus leave from in Chicago?

Buses to Des Moines leave from multiple locations in Chicago, Illinois. These are the 4 most popular bus stations:

  • Bus Station - 630 W Harrison St
  • Dan Ryan Bus Station
  • Union Station - 225 S Canal St
  • 5800 N Cumberland Ave

Where does the bus arrive in Des Moines?

All buses from Chicago arrive at one main station in Des Moines, Iowa:

  • Bus Station - 1501 2nd St

Price trends for buses from Chicago to Des Moines

Average prices by travel date

$45$30$15FebMar

Monthly average prices

$50$40$30$20$10AMJJASONDJFM

Prices as travel date approaches

$75$60$45$30$153020100

Book buses and trains on the go with the Wanderu app.

Download our app and snag the best travel deals across North America & Europe.Learn more

wanderu
iPhone
wanderu
Android
Available on iOS & Android