You might be surprised to find out that you may need a special license in order to operate a limousine or that manufacturers have to pay a “gas guzzler tax” –“intended to discourage the production and purchase of fuel-inefficient cars” [source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency].The facts and figures below can help sort out gas mileage, safety and costs associated with owning or renting a limo.
There isn’t a standardized licensing requirement for chauffeurs from one state to another. Some states require chauffeurs pass a specific test to become licensed, while others simply require the applicant to fill out a form. Many states don’t require anything more than a standard license, though some might require that the chauffeur apply for a commercial license if the limousine is going to carry large numbers of passengers at one time.
Limousines have to meet the same safety standards as other vehicles. In theory, every conversion shop has to put every vehicle variation through a battery of tests, including crash tests, to ensure the safety of the driver and passengers. The government periodically inspects vehicles and requests proof from limousine companies that their vehicles have been tested.
In general, limousines get lousy gas mileage, though it varies from vehicle to vehicle (and even a Lincolnstretch limo from one company might get vastly different mileage from a different company’s stretch Lincoln). Limousine companies have to pay a “gas guzzler tax” on each vehicle [source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency]. Essentially, this is compensation to the government for all the pollution the limousine will create over its life of service.
In a similar vein, the cost of limousines range from bargain buys to extravagant purchases. A custom-built Arnage limousine might be more than $300,000, while a used stretch Lincoln might go for less than $30,000. Conversions can range almost as much depending upon the base vehicle, the length you want to stretch it, and the amenities you choose to include.
Services and Dealers
There are hundreds of limousine services in the United States that rent limos and provide drivers to the general public. There are also hundreds of private operators who either hire themselves out to anyone or become a personal driver for a wealthy person. Before you rent a limo — or purchase one for yourself — it pays to do some research on the limousine company. Make sure the company tests its vehicles and, if possible, find out what the certification process is for its drivers. Reputation in the limousine industry is very important, so try to pick a company with a good one. That way, when you’re riding in the back with several of your friends, all you’ll have to worry about is what everyone wants to drink.
To learn more about limousines and related subjects, check out the links on the next page.
The trip from Miami Beach to MIA isn’t a long one—it can take anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the time of day. But in between you may have to fend against a horde of annoyances, including bad traffic jams, stress from trying to make a tight flight, or nerves from driving and thinking about upcoming business ventures at the same time. To avoid all of this, hire a car service company to get you where you need to go. Does that sound like more trouble or money than it’s worth? Read our list of reasons to hire a limo below, and you may just change your tune.
You’re On a Tight Schedule
If only time worked the way we wanted it to, we could make it go as fast or slow as we wanted. Unfortunately, that’s not the case, so you can’t give yourself more hours to make your fast-paced trip less stressful. If you’re on a tight schedule and you’ll immediately be on your way to a meeting once you land, have car service get you to the airport. A reputable car service company will get you where you need to go with lots of time to spare. Your chauffeur will keep a close eye on traffic patterns, so he or she will know to take alternate routes, if needed. This will be good for you. Why? With all that’s on your plate, the last thing you want to pay attention to is traffic. Hire a good car service company, and you won’t have to.
You Don’t Want to Drive The Airport
Sitting in stop-and-go traffic—getting your hopes up when traffic seems to start moving faster, only to pound the brake when it slows down again—is not fun. Nor is it what you need. Not when your attention could be spent elsewhere. Plus, if your mind is pulled in different directions between the road and your business affairs, you could end up getting into a fender-bender. Take the path of least resistance, and hire a car service to deal with traffic. Your driver will focus on the road, which will leave you free to focus on your business affairs.
You Have Work to Do
Another benefit of car service? You can easily get work done. Your chauffeur will give you all the peace and quiet you need for private phone conversations. Small tables in the back of the car can hold your tablet or other small electronic devices if you need to compose a quick email. Reports and other documents can also be yours for the tackling. Using your commute productively will help you cut down your workload on the front end, meaning you can spend your precious free hours during your trip the way you want to. How does that sound?
You Need Some Downtime
Your commute can also be a good chance for you just to relax, too. Your car will come equipped with a sound system that can play whatever music calms you. If you choose to hire a limo, you can even watch a DVD as you’re taken from Point A to Point B. Of course, if you just want to close your eyes for a little while, you can do that, too. Chauffeurs are trained to pick up on their clients’ needs, and not a word will be spoken to break the silence—unless you say something first.
You Don’t Want to Pay for Parking
For long-term parking at MIA, every days cost $8. If you’re gone for a week, that adds up to more than $60. There are better things to spend your money on. Like a good cigar, or a fine meal, or a nice bottle of wine. A few feet of concrete will hardly be as satisfying.
Hiring car service for your airport transfers is a really smart decision. You’ll free up some time to relax, get work done, or simply do nothing, if you want. Plus, with the stress of traffic taken out of the equation, you can arrive at your destination ready to take on whatever’s in store for you. For that, car service is worth it.
Miami is one of the most popular cities of the world. People make trips everyday for different purpose and occasions, for which usually rent a limousine from airport to a hotel in Miami. Many companies are expert to provide their customers the best Miami Limousine Service in the best way and as per their requirement in order to gratify their customers. Miami limo is a much required thing in South Florida as the crowd are constantly moving from one place to another, because of which the level of competition in Miami Limo Services has increased in these last years. Airport and Seaport Limousine are mostly the type of service inquired in Miami.
Miami limousine provides transportation mostly for all cities and purpose, like for Miami airport, Port of Miami, Fort Lauderdale airport transfers within a city, and from city to city. They also transport small and large groups to seaport and to all domestic airports. Limousine rental Miami offers you a huge option for various events in your business as well as in your personal matters with such a comfortable and luxurious experience. You can experience very easily A pick-ups and drops at hotel and the Miami International Airport by hiring a Fort Lauderdale Limo service.
There are many Miami based provider of limousine services. They offer you a wide range of limousine along with the consultation which suits to your budget and occasion too. You just have to name the occasion and they have a perfect Miami Limo rental service for you as per your requirement. Currently, South Florida, Dade County, Palm Beach County and Broward County is very well serving areas. Big buses, Vans SUVs, shuttles and motor coaches along with well trained staff are there to serve you.
Miami airport limo service is available all the year round. Whether its an occasion in your family of a wedding, or for your luxurious transportation that suits and enhances your style and class in your graduation prom night they have all kind of services with them. To grab peoples attention in the prom night by reaching there in a classy Hummer Limousine for you and as for other events too like for an ever wanted royal treatment like celebrities. So feel free to contact for a limo service for any kind of transportation needs with lavishness and style, render you topped up with hygiene comfort and courtesy.
Contentment of customers is what seeks here to attain through excellence of services with reasonable prices. They put in all the efforts together to make your travel experience a memorable one with a sufficient number of vehicles range, you can be sure of hiring a vehicle just when you require it.
The Miami limousine is available online for your booking or for other queries. You can book or take advices depending on your requirement with the flashing services, types of cars and 24 hours helpline numbers. One should surely experience the rental luxury of Miami.
There is a legitimate need and role for both taxis and limousines; but they are quite different—especially here in the Miami market, so it is important to be aware and informed. That way you can get the services you want, at the price point you want. If you are trying to get your mother from Miami to a complex medical center in Fort Lauderdale, you might want one kind of service. If you are a very drunk college student who wants a lift for three blocks to the next bar, with some leeway on demands for reliability and luxury, you might want a very different type of service. Of course there are good reasons that the two services should not be mixed.
The main differences between a taxi and a limousine center on two broad areas: “service” and “equipment”—though we will also highlight important differences between how they are scheduled: “reserved vs. on-demand” modes of operation; and differences in “methods of pricing and charging.”
“Service” is easy to understand and includes everything from on-time reliability and levels of professionalism and care from the driver, to quality of communication (at all phases from reservation to follow-up), attention to in-vehicle comfort, having a complimentary newspaper, availability of satellite music and news choices, access to a bottle of water, and many other elements that could affect your overall comfort, safety, and enjoyment of travel.
“Equipment quality” refers to the differences in quality, condition, and luxury associated with the vehicle itself, and continues through maintenance quality, cleanliness, and other aspects of the physical environment. Limousines and car services tend to offer equipment and services at the high end of the spectrum for both. Taxis tend to offer lower levels of service and equipment. This is primarily because taxis work under a different business model and tend to serve different customers, desires, and needs. As in most things, to some degree you get what you pay for, but that doesn’t make either one “right” or “wrong”—just different!
Reserved Limos vs. On-Demand Taxis
But there is an important third difference between taxis and limos which has to do with how they operate logistically, and how they make money. When you hire a car service, you are hiring a dedicated personal chauffeur and a car. You have hired a team to serve only you, to transport you or even to just be “on call” for a designated period of time. As much as you are buying a ride, you are also buying dedicated time. That team leaves the garage with you in mind, travels to meet you, takes care of your comfort while transporting you, and then drives home until the next mission. This is very different than how an on-demand taxi works.
Benefits of On-Demand Taxis
Taxis usually work as part of larger fleets, floating around like bees on a hive so as to always be nearby for that next trip. Taxis are about volume over quality. In most cities, and even in Kalamazoo, this system yields a great benefit: a specific taxi does not have to drive a great distance to come to you. They are set up for quick hops and short trips. You just grab the taxi cab that is closest, or call to have one dispatched to you from nearby. By floating all day as part of an on-demand fleet, each cab can scoop up many little fares per hour. This make the per-hour income for the cab decent, and the consumer cost often is often lower (but not always!).
Weaknesses of On-Demand Taxis
Taxis are not so much focused on comfort, luxury, equipment, service, or cleanliness, but on banging out lots of trips. Although on-demand taxi fleets are generally efficient and cheap, by definition the high-volume, low-price model demands less than luxurious vehicles, as it cannot “afford” the kind of service and personal attention that a dedicated car service would provide.
Remember that drunk college kid example? Where the taxi had masses of people stumbling in and out all evening—or worse? Is that the same vehicle, and exact same seat, that you want your frail mother to have to sit in tomorrow morning for an hour-long drive to a medical center, or for a morning of shopping and a visit to the beauty parlor? Or that as a business person you want to sit in on the way to the airport while you spread out your laptop and papers? No! You want to work on your laptop in a clean, luxurious environment.
A taxi operator would be crazy to have a luxury vehicle, because it would get torn apart very quickly by the nighttime bar crowds and short-hop on-demand traffic. Operators would also be crazy to hire top-tier drivers who could serve as personal assistants and courteous attendants, because the additional cost would have no value to the bar-hopping college student.
Strengths of the Advance-Schedule Limousine model
Finally, it is important to realize that the on-demand taxi mode of operation is often unreliable when you want to schedule a specific pickup time. Why? Because the floating bees sometimes get tied up. They try to sneak in one more fare. Or maybe the last trip turned out to be to a destination on the other side of the county, and now your reservation just doesn’t work out so well for the cab company. We hear it from clients all the time. The on-demand taxi model is simply different than the advance-schedule, dedicated car and driver service model that limousines use.
Methods of Pricing and Charging
The way taxis and limos charge for services is another key difference. Taxis are always metered, so they charge for both time and distance—which can surprisingly add up to even a significantly higher charge for some trips, particularly where traffic or longer distances outside the city are involved!
There are some overly simple generalizations here, depending on the market and city size, but in general taxis tend to be efficient and cheap, but offer lower levels of comfort, service, and equipment. Limos and car services offer dedicated, higher-end care and personal attention, in more luxurious levels of equipment.
1. Consider the type of event.
Typically limousine companies charge based on the type of event. Events are typically as follows: Airport Transfers, Weddings, Nights Out, Birthday Parties, City or Wine Tours, Day Trips, Concerts, A to B Transfers, Proms, Client Meetings and Special Events. Most limousine companies have special airport transfer rates and special A to B Rates. All limousine companies have hourly minimums on Friday and Saturday nights.
2. Prepare the details of what you are looking for.
Most companies charge by the hour, so it is important to decide how many hours you will need.
3. Determine how many people will be participating before you call.
This can affect what type of vehicle you can ride in. You want to make sure that you rent a limousine that’s large enough to cater to all of your guests so they don’t end up looking like they’ve been stacked inside a sushi roll.
4. Decide on vehicle types.
Here are all the types of vehicles available:
Sedans (mostly Town cars but sometimes Mercedes or Specialty Sedans)
6 Passenger Limousine (Seats 4 comfortably)
8 Passenger Limousine (Seats 6 comfortably)
10 Passenger Limousine (Seats 8 comfortably)
12 Passenger Limousine (Seats 10 comfortably)
14-22 SUV Limousine (Typically a Navigator, Escalade, or Excursion)
18-20 Passenger Hummer
Small Shuttle Bus (22-35 Passengers)
Coach Bus (45-55 Passengers)
Small Limo Bus (14-22 Passengers)
Coach Limo Bus (28-35 Passengers)
Classic Cars (Rolls Royce, etc).
5. Focus on value: the best service at the best price:
Not all limousine services are equal. Price should not be the only factor in your search. Much like renting a hotel, different price points often mean different service levels. It good to have a budget determined ahead of time, but also know what type of experience you want.
6. Get the right ride:
Often times, the right vehicle can make all the difference – a stretch Hummer for your next bachelor party or a classic antique for riding off in style from the wedding. Ensure the vehicle you’re getting has the space, features and look for your next event. Try to book a vehicle that has room for at least one to two more people than are in your party. Some companies provide music (radio or satellite radio), so ask in advance or be prepared to take your iPod or a mix CD with enough music to last the whole ride. Also ask about features like the seating arrangement and luggage capacity for large group vehicles. Not sure which is the best ride for you? Check out our Limo Pricing Guide for vehicle details.
7. Safety first:
The most important thing to consider when booking a limo is safety for yourself and your party. Legitimate limo companies need to be registered with their state (US only), have the proper levels of insurance and be properly licensed. Never book a limo with a company that can’t promptly show you their licensing and insurance credentials – don’t take chances.
8. Plan ahead:
Think about all the details of your ride experience. Do you need ice or drinks? Do you have a preferred route for your ride? What stops would you like to make? Providing these details to your chosen limo service provider will help them meet your needs – for the right price.
9. Get the whole price:
Always make sure you are checking prices apples-to-apples between services. Each limousine company will generally have their own unique pricing policies. Most companies offer services priced by the hour – but may also offer flat/guaranteed rates for airport rides or sometimes all-inclusive packages. Pay attention to “add on’s” like fuel surcharges or other services fees not included in the base price. FYI, it is customary to tip drivers 18-20% of the base price. Most companies automatically charge a driver tip, while some leave it to the customer to decide. Be sure you get the full price up front when weighing your options.
A package is often the best choice for special occasions like weddings, concerts, prom, sporting events or other ride types with a predictable start and end time. Packages will generally provide a set number of hours in a vehicle that fits your party size and event for a fixed, all-inclusive price. Some companies offer packages for every type of service and most give substantial “bulk rate” price breaks.
11. Reserve early – especially for big events:
Start searching well before you need your limo. For wedding limos, some people book 12-18 months in advance. Other events, like proms, are best to book a limo a few months in advance. In general, it is best to start looking 3-4 weeks before your event. After you’ve selected the right limo service provider, get confirmation in writing. For special occasions, it’s generally a good idea to contact your limo service provider a week before the event, just to ensure everything is confirmed. It is best to call 2-4 weeks in advance of the reservation. Now, do some research. Google “Vehicle Type, Your City” for example, “8-passenger limousine, San Francisco,CA.” Then look at the company websites to confirm the companies have your desired vehicle. Look in the phone book and decide on an additional few companies.
12. Call companies and listen to how each company deals with your phone call.
On your special night, it is important that the company is responsive to your requests. Call each name on the list and get quotes from each. Be sure to ask for rates including gratuity, cancellation fees, how much for an extra hour and their TCP number (State license to be a licensed transport). Ask what the vehicles come with (alcohol, music, passes to clubs, etc.).
13. Decide which company you feel will be on time, have the best vehicle and chauffeur, and has the best price.
For most people, price is not as important as service, so don’t automatically choose the lowest rate, you might end up with an 80’s limo and a driver in jeans and a t-shirt.
14. Book the vehicle with the company you choose.
When booking make sure to get a copy of the contract and reservation, confirmation/reservation number, as well as their cancellation policy in writing/email. Make sure to confirm the out the door price that will be charged to your credit card.
15. Call 2-4 days before your event to confirm your reservation and request the driver’s cell phone number.
Be sure to verify that the routing is correct and that there is a driver scheduled. Be sure to ask if they are going to farm out your run.(A “Farm-out” means that they are selling your reservation to another company at a profit). If they tell you of their intention to farm out, either tell them not to do so, or ask for details of the other company so that you can satisfy yourself of their reliability.
16. Call 3 hours prior to the event, just to check in and make sure everything is fine.