Curious about limo services?
Did you know there are over 1.2 million taxi and limo services operating within the United States? So, how can you narrow it down and pick just one when so many options are available?
Well, that’s what this article is all about: what you should ask your limo company before you sign on the dotted line. Make sure you check off each item on the list below before you sign anything. When you’re ready to learn what it takes to find the perfect limo company, read on.
1. Ask for the Location of the Limo Service Company
This is one of the easiest things to overlook. After all, the limo is coming to pick you up. Why should you care where it began its journey?
Here’s a secret: limos charge you for the time it takes to travel from their base of operations to pick you up. The further away from the company, the more you pay.
That’s why you always want to pick a local company if given the choice. Local companies are also more familiar with the geography. Their drivers know more about the shortcuts and hotspots in their home city.
When you speak with the service on the phone, ask them for their address. If they’re local, ask for a driver who also lives locally. It’ll improve your chances for a successful trip.
2. Double Check Their Insurance
This is one of the most important limo service tips we can offer you: get proof of insurance. This ranks number one on the “what to know when getting a limo service” checklist.
Why, you ask, would any driving service not have insurance? Isn’t that the only thing they need in order to drive you around legally?
Well, there are a few other things they need, but insurance is definitely at the top of the list. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for services to skimp on their insurance for any number of reasons.
- Invalid license
- Parking/traffic tickets
- Problems with income
- High premiums
- Problems with the business license
Make sure you actually see their documentation. A “yes” over the phone won’t suffice. You need to lay your eyes on the paperwork so you can verify it for yourself.
If the service is reluctant to show you, or just plain refuses to show you, pass on the service. If you’re feeling so inclined, you may also want to turn them in. It’s illegal to drive in any state without insurance; doubly so if you’re a driving service.
Remember, you will be responsible for your medical bills if your driver gets in a crash and is uninsured. If the crash is his fault, normally his auto policy would pay first. Then your health insurance would cover whatever remained.
Since your driver isn’t insured, you’re responsible for all of it.
3. Get It in Writing
Limo companies are in the business of selling you something. Like salesman in the auto industry or entertainment industry, they’re often guilty of overpromotion. They may embellish their limo’s features or use hyperbole when speaking with you.
“We run the cleanest service this side of the Rocky Mountains.” “We’ll give you the best limo experience you could ever wish for.” “We’ll get you from your hotel to the conference in under 15 minutes.”
Those are just a few common examples you may hear. If the company in question makes a promise that you’re depending on, make them put it in pen and ink. Then make them sign it.
That’s the only way It’s legally binding. It makes their promise a legal guarantee, one which they’re responsible to uphold. If they don’t, you can take them to court and win.
Other things you should have in writing include any other specifics you’ve discussed.
- Limo make and model
- Driver’s name
- How long you’re renting their service
- Price of each service they’re offering you
It’s the only way you’ll have legal recourse should something go wrong. It’s also the only legal recourse you’ll have if the company tries to add additional costs to pad the bill.
4. Demand the Whole Price
We’d love to tell you that most limo service guides tell you everything you need to know to hire your first limo. Unfortunately, they often leave out the seedier side of the business.
Everyone’s heard of scams involving auto repair shops that charge customers for services they don’t need. For instance, replacing fuel lines that are in perfect condition or installing a new fan belt when your old one worked just fine.
Well, the limo industry is notorious for performing some similarly underhanded trickery. And it comes in the form of padding the bill with extra charges or services. Such companies won’t inform you of these extras until it’s time to pay.
Then it’s difficult to argue your case.
If you ask for an itemized grand total upfront, however, they can’t pull this scam. If they try, you’ll have all the ammunition you need to refuse them on legal grounds.
5. Shop Around
You can always find out more about what limo services in your area offer by simply checking. Plan to call at least 5 to 7 different services. Ask about their prices, limo styles, chauffeurs, and discount packages.
The discounts are especially important. Limo companies some flexibility in their packages and pricing. If you can convince them their competitors are offering something better, they’re usually willing to bend.
Shoot it to them straight. Tell them you want to hire them. Also tell them their competitors’ packages, features, or pricing is a much better deal.
Then ask if they’re willing to match their competitor’s deal. The answer is usually yes.
Here are some other things to ask while you’re shopping around:
What’s your cancellation policy? See if you can find a service with will allow you to delay your limo rental service or change days altogether. This is especially useful if you’re headed to an event that might be affected by inclement weather.
Check the passenger capacity of your limo. Different limos can only legally accommodate a certain number of passengers. Make sure your limo will cover your needs.
Also, ask for testimonials or references. This is especially true if you’re on the fence about the company in question. See what other customers have to say about their experience.
Lastly, always ask about the driver’s tip. See if it’s already included in the bill. If not, ask about proper tipping procedure, including the tipping amount.
Then, make sure you have it in cash when your ride service comes to its conclusion.
Remember, the price of a limo service should never be the only factor in your shopping decision. How clean, trustworthy, and stylish a company presents itself is also of utmost importance. Don’t be afraid to spend a few extra dollars to ensure you’ll have an epic experience.
Travel well and good luck!