Ich fahre Bus.
I drive a bus. (=I'm a bus driver.)
I ride the bus. (= I travel on a bus as a passenger.) ?
- Why do you use Bus with no article here?
German Language Stack Exchange is a bilingual question and answer site for speakers of all levels who want to share and increase their knowledge of the German language. It's 100% free, no registration required.Sign up to join this community
Ich fahre Bus can mean both: I am a bus driver or I ride in a bus. It depends on the context.
If you say
Ich fahre den Bus or
Ich fahre einen Bus you are the driver.
Ich fahre mit einem Bus means normally you ride on a bus. But depending on the context, it could also mean you are the driver. If it is clear you drive, then the sentence
Ich fahre mit einem Bus expresses the detail, which vehicle you take.
In this case "Bus" is treated like a mass noun just like water.
Ich trinke Wasser.
Ich fahre Bus.
The fact that English needs an article in your examples has more to do with the verbs that can't handle mass nouns, I guess. It does seem to work with car brands though... at least in colloquial use
I drive Mercedes
Anyway. Here's an example that shows that treating bus as a mass noun is not unknown in English.
I go by bus.
As stated previously, Ich fahre Bus can mean either or. For future reference, when you're traveling somewhere by way of something, you would use mit. For example:
Ich komme mit dem Bus.
Du kommst mit dem Rad.
Sie bringt mich mit dem Auto zur Schule.
Ich komme mit dem Moped nach Hause.
An exception to this would be using your feet:
Meine Mutter geht zu Fuss nach Hause.