Maybe you're on your way to the airport for a business trip or vacation. Maybe you want chauffeur service for a fancy night out with your sweetheart or spouse. Or maybe you want to impress a visiting business associate with a luxury town car pickup from his hotel. Whatever the case, you need a car service. But out of the array of transportation services in your area, which one do you choose?
Car services vary in quality as much as businesses in any other industry. For every reliable and affordable town car or limo option, you'll find one that doesn't live up to its advertising. The key to making the right decision is to do your research into various companies' offerings and to look for past customer reviews. The goal is to know both what a company promises and whether it has delivered on those promises in the past.
When you're investigating, consider these various characteristics of a quality car service:
- Qualified drivers: How does the company train its drivers? Do they possess licensing beyond a standard driver's license? Are they tested frequently for road knowledge and safe practices? When you're putting your personal safety in the hands of another driver, you want to be sure that driver is fully prepared for the job.
- Quick turnaround times: Where is the car service located? How quickly can they have a vehicle at your home or place of business, if you're calling for an immediate pickup? Do they guarantee an on-time pickup for pre-booked rides? If you need to leave or arrive at a specific time, you need a car service that can meet those needs.
- Reasonable rates: How does one transportation service compare to other area companies in terms of price? If it's slightly more pricey, are there any additional amenities, like a uniformed driver, that account for the extra cost? You don't need to go with the cheapest car service out there, as long as you feel like the rates are reasonable for what you're getting.
- Clean, reliable vehicles: Every company is likely to advertise vehicles that are clean inside and out, so you'll need to look for past customer reviews to verify that claim. Has anyone complained of a messy, scratched, or dinged-up vehicle? If atmosphere during your ride matters to you, do extra research to verify vehicle cleanliness and presentation.
In a perfect world, you'll find a car service or airport shuttle that has it all: highly trained drivers, spotless luxury vehicles, pickup service exactly when you need it, and low prices. However, you might need to prioritize some qualities over others. For instance, the more luxurious the ride, the bigger the dent in your wallet. If you do your research and know what you're looking for, you can look forward to a smooth ride.
Kelly Robertson is a car enthusiast and a senior Internet marketing strategist for Prospect Genius, a leader in local online advertising.
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