StartupBus Florida

StartupBus is a hackathon + competition + roadtrip. 30 strangers have 3 days to conceive, build & launch a startup and compete for venture capital funding. On a bus going 60MPH. StartupBus Florida is competing against people on 9 other buses from all over the US.


The Tour Bus

Event Evangelist


Adopt A Busprenuer


Barcamp Tampa Bay

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You and a team of strangers on a bus traveling at 60 miles per hour have 72 hours to conceive, build, and launch a startup. It is absolutely crazy, trust me, I know.

You think you are up for the challenge? Well luckily for you there are still some seats left.

Apply now! 

Saturday, March 2nd: Launch Party

8pm: Pre-launch Party (TBA) Come by and meet the crew, have a few drinks, and get ready for the time of your life. Open to anyone who wants to meet, interview or buy a drink for (hey, we can ask!) the buspreneurs and their fearless leaders.

Sunday, March 3rd: Tampa -> Atlanta

  • 8am: Launch! - The mayor, some local press and other startup enthusiasts will be there to send us off from downtown! Possible camera crews, so brush your hair.
  • Morning: Get to work! - NOW it gets interesting! Everyone who has an idea will pitch it to the bus.
  • Noonish: Lunch & split into teams. 
  • Afternoon: Crank! - Get to work! Clock’s ticking!
  • Evening: Arrive in Atlanta! - How ready will we be to get off the bus? Very!
  • 6pm-ish?: Eat, drink and be social! 
  • 10pm-ish?: Work/sleep! 

Monday, March 4th: Atlanta -> New Orleans, LA

  • Earlier than you’d like: Back on the bus! Work all day and stop for lunches, dinners and bathroom breaks along the way to Baton Rouge, LA.
  • Evening: When (StartupBus) worlds collide! That night we’ll meet up with the Ohio, NY, and NYC Alumni Buses. 

Tuesday, March 5th: New Orleans -> San Antonio

  • Morning? Already? On the road again! Off again and the biggest hack push. We’ll arrive in San Antonio for a StartupBus party with all the other buses. 

Wednesday, March 6th: San Antonio

  • Team interviews with review panel. Teams will have ~5 minutes to present to panel and answer questions. When teams aren’t pitching, they can continue hacking. Teams will be selected from this for semifinals.
  • Semi-final pitches in evening

Thursday, March 7th: San Antonio

  • Finals at Rackspace, 10:30AM-12:30PM
  • Start shuttling from San Antonio to Austin ~2PM. Three buses will shuttle
  • 4:00PM - start of startup crawl

Friday, March 8th: Finale! - Austin

  • Grand final: private event at Champions. This would include two from the regular competition, two from the alumnis, and two wild cards
  • Winners go to incubator (StartupHouse)

If you’re selected for the Finale, you’ll be pitching in front of a panel of esteemed judges (TBA):

Last year’s judges were:

  • Robert Scoble (Rackspace)
  • David Cohen (TechStars)
  • Naval Ravikant (AngelList)
  • Dave McClure (500Startups)

Saturday, March 9: - Austin

  • Final StartupBus/Rackspace party in Austin

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You and a team of strangers on a bus traveling at 60 miles per hour have 72 hours to conceive, build, and launch a startup. It is absolutely crazy, trust me, I know.

You think you are up for the challenge? Well luckily for you there are still some seats left.

Apply now! 


Ok, so things are finally coming together!

There have been a ton of questions as to what the hell is going on, and the key point to remember is semi-organized, highly organic, chaos :)

Q: I want to ride/ sponsor! What do I do?
Fill this out and we’ll get you an invite to apply ASAP!

Q: How do I get a hold of you?

A: Easy! You can find me on skype (ID: susiesteiner), or you can give me a call - 813-505-7572 or email me at or twitter @SQQZY

Q: What is the schedule? What does our route look like?
A: See here: Schedule & Route. We’ll be stopping for meals, breaks and hopefully some fun

Q: What is this all going to cost?
A: That depends on you! The tickets for the bus are $299, that pays for about half the bus (they’re really expensive) the other half is going to be covered by sponsors. The first night we’re going to be in Atlanta. We’re looking for sponsors, but worst case, plan on $50 tops. The second night will be in New Orleans or Baton Rouge and we are finalizing details now. The third night in San Antonio is still being worked on with National - I’ll let you know asap.

Q: Do we also need to find accommodations in Austin? I’ve heard a Startup House mentioned in Austin - do we stay there?
A: Once we get to Austin, we’re going to have a few options. There is talk of getting some space outside of the city and then organizing buses into Austin. You can also get your own place, stay with friends or whatever you’d like… it’s an adventure so be prepared to A) Not sleep and just work, B) Sleep on a couch, floor, bar. We’re still working on Startup House. Plan for the worst, hope for the best.

Q: Does the bus bring us back from Austin as well, or do we fly back?
A: Getting back home is your job. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay on the bus. I just booked a flight on American for $180, so that’s really good!

Q: Of the Developer/Designer/Business categories…what shoes are you looking for me to fill?
A: That’s going to be up to you and your team!

Q: Who else is on board?
A: Only the best and brightest minds in the Southeast (and even some internationals) in the IT field. The mix is going to be something like 70% hackers, 20% designers and 10% Biz Dev. So if you are a Biz Dev person you had to be pretty special to be picked (not that the others aren’t special).

Q: What’s next?
Connect with us and we’ll start looping you in on the Skype calls we have regularly!

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Sponsorship information:

@startupbusFL |

The Bostonian Conductor was super productive and put this together to help you know what you should bring! Thanks Igor! As you can imagine, your productivity will largely depend on having your tools of the trade ready and being able to hit the ground running the minute the bus doors close. This discussion is different for developers, designers and hustlers, so I’ll structure it differently for each group.


  • Preinstall dropbox for file sharing with your team.
  • Bring memory sticks for file sharing in dead zones.
  • Bring headphones so that you don’t strangle your fellow hustler who might be on the call 24/7 with the media, customers, etc.
  • If you like listening to music while working, don’t rely on Spotify and other streaming services. iTunes will be your best option.
  • Think of what you want to work on and be ready to pitch that idea with as many facts as possible to back up your thinking (competitors, market size, monetization strategy, etc.)


  • Bring a headset with a microphone so that you can pitch to reporters, close deals, and do your thing without disrupting others next to you.
  • You will probably want to use Skype so I suggest having that preinstalled and working.
  • You may also want to consider using Toutapp which will allow you to send mass emails using a single template.
  • Make sure to come with a list of contacts that you want to blast once we’re ready to start marketing.
  • If you want to be involved in project management, consider using Things. They have a 30 day trial and it’s a great tool for non-collaborative (your teammates will be next to you ) and offline task management. Obviously, there are gazillion other ones. Just make sure to know what you want to use before you get on the bus - don’t waste your time researching while traveling.

Designers and front end developers:

  • We’ll be using git so have that ready on your machine and be familiar with the commands. Also make sure to have a Github account.
  • Refresh your jQuery skills if you haven’t touched that in a while. I recommend saving a local copy instead of linking to a remote resource.
  • We should make sure to use a CSS framework, so familiarize yourself with Blueprint (unless we decide to switch to something else).
  • If you plan to do any front end development, you should also read the points under “Back end developers”

Back end developers:

  • Due to the spotty on-board internet connection, forget about developing on a remote server. Instead make sure to have all you need on your local machine, including your development environment and ideally even some manuals, guides, books, etc in PDF format.
  • For Rails, download rvm, rubygems and everything else you need. For other frameworks, do your own thing. You can build web apps, mobile, or something we haven’t even thought of!
  • Make sure to have git locally and a Github account. Even better, install Git as a local server so you won’t need to rely on our local hotspots.