Limousines are costly business assets; it is not cost effective for limousine services to offer their service for 1 hour. Typically a one-hour rental would consume more than 3 hours when considering travel time, vehicle preparation and wait time. You can not rent a quality hotel room for one hour; nor can you rent a quality limousine service for one hour.
What should you budget for your wedding?
This depends on the type and number of vehicles you are planning to rent. Please understand that most limousine services have a rental minimum of three to four hours. Most services do not offer "pick-up" and "drop-off" service as this may only consume an hour of time. Some limousine companies may offer standard sedans for one or two hours, but not stretch limousines. A typical wedding rental package runs from $400 - $600 for 3 to 4 hours of service and the exact price depend on your vehicle preference. Exotic vehicles will cost much more. For example, a standard white 10-passenger stretch limousine would usually rent for less than an exotic vehicle, such as a Stretch SUV Hummer, Escalade and Excursion. Also, all super stretch limousines with seating capacity greater than 14, will rent for a higher price because the driver much have a special driver’s license and training.
When do you start shopping?
A good time to begin your wedding limousine shopping is 6 to 9 months before your wedding date. Delays in your shopping could result in not finding the vehicle of your choice. Conversely, most companies do not handle inquiries for service, which extend beyond one year. To be taken seriously by a limousine service, it is best to begin your shopping duties six months before your wedding date if special vehicles are required.
Can my bridal party fit in the limousine?
Most stretch limousines simply are not big enough to accommodate 12-14 people. Exotic vehicles can accommodate larger parties but are more expensive and limited. When shopping, make sure you consider the number of passengers and their size. Although a limousine might be designated as a "10 - passenger" limousine, it may be difficult to squeeze 10 adults dressed in formal attire in such limousines. If you have several large members in an 8 to 10 person bridal party, you may want to go with a “14 – passenger” SUV for comfort. Otherwise it may be a tight squeeze!
Should I get a contract?
A contract is know replacement for good quality service. Being able to prove a limousine company breached a contract will NOT help after they have ruined your wedding day! More importantly, research the reputation of your limousine company to ensure they understand your requirements and have experience in the wedding industry. A limousine company that specialize in weddings will often have a set of services not offered by other limousine companies, such as; Red Carpet Service, Special Refreshments, “Just Married” signage, Tuxedo-Dressed Chauffeurs and Champagne.
How do I get the best price?
If you haven't yet planned a wedding date, consider picking a date that DOES NOT interfere with other events that may be scheduled on that date. During prom season (March - May) demand for limousines and prices are higher. If you compete with Prom attendees, you will most likely pay a higher price for your limousine. If your wedding is March – May, make sure you are able to release the limousine by 4pm. In this way, the limousine company can still book a prom for that same vehicle and may offer you special pricing. Also, June, September and October are premium wedding months, so be prepared to pay the going rate for limousine service.
Do we pay while the limousine is waiting?
You still have to pay for the rental time during your wedding even if you aren't physically using the vehicle. Although the vehicle is not in use by you, it cannot be used elsewhere, even when there are 2 or 3 hours in between the wedding and reception. However, exceptions do exist when there are at least 6 to 8 hours between a pick-up and drop-off. For example, there is usually a short wait between the wedding and the reception (1 to 2 hours), but the wait between the reception and the final get-away after the reception can be 3 to 5 hours. It is best to have a vintage vehicle or standard sedan return for the final pickup at the end of the evening to pick up just the bride and groom.