Some brides spend so much time and effort planning their dream wedding, that when it comes to selecting their limousine (or other transportation) -- they make a few calls from the yellow pages and make their selection based upon the lowest price. In some cases, the least expensive option may not be the most reliable -- what would happen if the limo is late, or worse, if it didn't show up at all?
Here are some important considerations and questions to ask when selecting your transportation company -- in order to help you have a dependable and most enjoyable ride.
Type of Vehicles - Ask about the types of cars or limousines that the company offers. There are six, eight and ten-plus passenger (super stretch) limos. Ask how many passengers the car will hold comfortably.
Ask specifically which car you will have on your wedding day. You may think you're getting a great price -- until a six-passenger limo shows up to take you and your eight bridesmaids to the church.
Ask about the color -- don't just assume that your limousine will be white! Limousines come in white, gray, navy and black.
Ask about other types of cars that are available. Some companies offer custom vehicles or vintage cars. How about arriving in a Rolls Royce?
Condition of Vehicles - Ask the year and model of the car. If it is an older car, is it in good condition? If possible, try to visit the company before you book them and ask to see the type of limo that would be picking you up. Be sure to inspect both the inside and outside of the car.
Chauffeurs - Ask the company about its chauffeurs. Choose a company that places a high value and emphasis on the quality and professionalism of their chauffeurs.
Ask how the chauffeur will be dressed. Will he/she be wearing a tuxedo? Some companies will even send their drivers with top hats and white gloves!
Price - Ask how they base their charges. Is it based on a time limit (2-3 hours)? Distance? If it is based on time, what happens if the allotted time goes over? Is there an extra charge? What is that charge?
Tipping - Ask about tipping. Is it already included in the price? If not, what is an acceptable tip. Usually 15 percent is customary and 20 percent is given for great service.
Discounts - Ask about any available discounts. Many companies will offer discounts to the bride and groom when they reserve additional vehicles for their wedding day or for their bachelor or bachelorette parties.
Directions - Ask the company if the driver is familiar or well-acquainted with the area where you will be traveling. In either case, it is a good idea to send written instructions to the transportation company detailing the directions to where the bride is to be picked up, the church and reception location.
Wedding Specials or Packages - Ask about any "wedding specials" such as complimentary champagne, a red carpet or any other special services. Some companies offer various wedding packages including a super-stretch limousine, customized "Just Married" sign with the bride and groom's name and decorations to match the wedding colors.
Check References - As with all of your other wedding vendors, it is always important to check references. The company should be happy to share this information with you.
Confirm Everything - If you have any specific requirements of your transportation company, be sure to contact them as early as possible and put everything in writing. Your contract should include the type and size of the car, pick up and drop off times and locations, and any other specific instructions.
Confirm your reservation the week before the wedding and make sure they have all of the directions.
With a little extra effort up front -- all you'll need to do is sit back and enjoy the ride.