Wedding & Prom Tips
Table of Contents
The National Limousine Association wants your experience with chauffeured transportation to be a memorable one. We want you and your loved ones to experience the style and elegance our industry provides and we want your day to be perfect in every way. Here are some tips:
- www.nlaride.com to find a limousine professional in your community.
- Determine the number of people you are transporting. Limousine companies typically quote the number of permitted passengers in their vehicles based on guidelines from the manufacturer. Typically, the manufacturer quotes a gross weight on the vehicle (FMVSS requirements) and a number of passengers based on 150 pounds per passenger. Unless you have extremely thin men in your party, booking the maximum number of people in the limousine will be extremely uncomfortable. For example, a six-passenger limousine is normally stretched between 65 and 70 inches. The vehicle is cut in half, stretched 65-70 inches, then finished by the manufacturer. This is comfortable for four adults. So lesson #1 is do NOT book the limousine to its maximum capacity. Instead, rent a larger limousine or rent more than one limousine. Some limousine companies also have stretched SUVs or 28-passenger mini-coaches. Never underestimate how warm and uncomfortable formal clothing is and how much worse its wearers can feel in close quarters.
- Many limousine operators use their colleagues to handle multi-vehicle charters. Ask your contact if another company will be working with them on your wedding day. Do your same due diligence on the other company. If you are not satisfied with the professionalism of the farm-out company, go to an operator who can manage the entire wedding charter.
- Timing: Weddings do not normally go off with military precision. Rent the limousine for at least an extra hour beyond the expected schedule. Have the limousine come 15-30 minutes early to allow extra time for pictures. Receiving lines take 25 minutes per 100 people and photographers take much more time then you probably figure. It is extremely stressful on everyone if you have left inadequate time for your charter.
- Limousine operators often have more than one event to service in a day. Do not assume you can add time to your charter on your wedding day. Spend a few dollars more so your limousine is guaranteed for all of the hours you require.
- Visit the limousine operator from whom you are renting the vehicle(s). Ask for references. Insist on a written contract within one week of leaving your deposit. Consider using a major credit card if you are unfamiliar with the company you have chosen.
- As much as possible, keep alcohol out of the limousine. Drinkers -- plus excitement and formal clothing -- can be a recipe for disaster.
- Consider hiring a van or full-size sedan to be on hand as a "designated driver" vehicle for those guests who may not have used their best judgment during the wedding reception.
- A chauffeur should be tipped between 15 and 20 percent of the total charge. ALL chauffeurs prefer a cash gratuity. If the chauffeur has treated you well, tip him/her handsomely and be sure to call the owner. If the chauffeur has NOT delivered good service, inform the owner as well.
- Breakdown: Limousines are machines. They unfortunately get flat tires and hoses and seals rip like any other vehicle. Unless you rent a "backup vehicle", most companies will have to scramble to transport you should there be a problem. Ask your limousine professional what system he/she has in the event of a problem.
Prom night is one of the most anticipated nights on the teen calendar. From preparing her fancy dress, hair and makeup to ordering expensive flowers, every girl would like to make this night special. A ride in a limousine to the big event can do just that and more; transforming prom night into an extraordinarily memorable and enchanting evening. But not all transportation companies are created equally. In fact, sometimes, chartering a limo from a poor quality company can ruin the entire night, which is why the experts at the National Limousine Association have a few tips on chartering professional and reliable chauffeured transportation:
- Talk to your friends early. The demand for transportation during the spring season can be overwhelming when so many others are chartering transportation for prom, graduation, and even weddings! Talk to your friends early and decide who will be in your limo group, so that you can book your reservations and get the vehicle you want.
- Show up in style. A unique chauffeured car will definitely set you apart from the rest. There are many styles available such as stretch limos with special interiors, sedans and party buses. Depending on the number of people you will have in the car, you may want a certain make or model. Choose something that suits your mood and shows you off. Consult www.nlaride.com to get a list of all the transportation professionals in your area, so you can check out what types of vehicles are available to you.
- Allow time to take lots of pictures. You’re definitely going want some memories, so plan for everyone to meet up for pre-prom at one location (make sure the limo company and the chauffeur have the address and directions). This will eliminate wasting time that can be used for taking pictures and enjoying your friends. You can even ask the driver to position the chauffeured vehicle to be a part of the shot.
- Ask about the perks. Some companies provide food, beverages, and tunes for the ride over to the party. Ask in advance about the amenities that are available, such as sparkling cider to toast the night away. Also ask about the type of music available – be prepared to take some mix CDs that will have enough music for the whole ride so that you have the coolest music for the special night!
- Extend the night. Don’t forget that there is always a post-prom party. Remember to book your ride for a few extra hours to ensure you have time to have a great time! Most importantly, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.
Prom Tips for Parents
Prom night is one of the most anticipated nights on the teen calendar. From the moment your son or daughter find their date, to the moment he or she shows up at the door, every moment needs to count towards making the night both safe and special. Though you may worry about your child staying out late on prom night, hiring a chauffeured car for the most important social event of the year can transform prom night into an extraordinarily memorable, safe and enchanting evening for your teenager and offer the parent the peace of mind to make it through! The National Limousine Association provides these five tips when you hire a transportation service for your teenager’s big night:
- Ask the transportation company for the Prom Promise. This is a document that teens sign in agreement of not drinking or taking drugs on prom night. Many limousine and chauffeured transportation companies offer this contract as a way to give parents an outlet to discuss the importance of safety on prom with their teens.
- Give the transportation company a curfew. That’s right; the chauffeur will abide by any rules you set forth, and will make sure to pick up and drop off your kids at a designated hour. This is a great way ensure your kids make it home on time, no excuses.
- Check with industry associations to make sure the company you choose is reputable. Organizations such as the National Limousine Association (NLA) and the local livery association are good indications that your service provider does their due diligence. If you are still stuck, consult www.nlaride.com. The National Limousine Association’s web site lists limousine professionals by community. Consumers can compare services, pricing, vehicle availability and receive non-binding online price quotes.
- Set some ground rules. As the parent, you have the right to tell the transportation company what will and will not be tolerated in the vehicle. For example, you can ask that the chauffeur keep the privacy screen down for the entire ride, so that he/she has a full grasp of what your kids are up to. If any of your rules are broken, the chauffeur can turn the car around and bring your kids home.
- Remember to sit back and relax. A reputable company hires drivers with proper training and licensing. Theses chauffeurs are used to carting around excited passengers all day long, so they know how to keep things under control.
The above information is reprinted with permission from the National Limousine Association. You can learn more at their web site at http://www.nlaride.com