Limousine Rental Tips - What You Need To Know Before Renting
Avoid making critical mistakes which can turn your limousine event into a nightmare! Wedding horror stories, limousine price shopping pitfalls, and more...
Looking for the "Best Price"?
Please don't make a limousine price shopping mistake! The biggest mistake you could make when looking for a limousine service is shopping on PRICE alone. Huge mistake! In the limousine industry, there are many variances of quality and price. All too often, a cheaper price translates into a larger risk for you. Most consumers would not choose a restaurant or hotel based on price alone, yet people shop for a limousine service this way and expect 5-star quality for the cheapest price. If you shop for a limousine service based only on price, you will likely be frustrated and disappointed with your limousine experience. We suggest you always personally "see" what you would be getting before you book a limousine (with us or a competitor).
Old vehicles, poor service, unprofessional chauffeurs, dangerous vehicles, under or uninsured vehicles, and even "no-shows" are all possible results of a "best price" limousine shopping experience.
How much does it cost to rent a limousine?
One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is, "How much does it cost to rent a limousine?" Well, such a general question is difficult to answer without more information. The cost of renting a limousine in the Quad Cities Area is based on several factors:
- Size of limousine (we offer 6 to 14 passengers, with prices that escalate with capacity)
- Type of limousine (we offer our Excursion SUV ultra-stretch limousine, plus we have Cadillac's top-of-the-line Platinum Edition Escalade ESV)
- Quality of limousine and service (we offer the newest and nicest, excellent condition limousines and guarantee satisfaction with our service!)
- Duration of booking (the greater the number of hours booked, the lower the rental rate per hour)
What kinds of amenities do your limousines have?
Our limousines have color TV(s) as large as 20-inch LCDs, DVDs or VCRs, surround sound stereos with CD players, privacy dividers, leather seating, decanter bars and ice chests with crystal glasses, dark tinted windows, mirrored glass ceilings with multi-color fiber optic lighting.
What comes with your wedding packages?
Since weddings are the largest part of our business, we excel in this area! In addition to the extravagant amenities listed above, our limousine wedding packages (extra charge may apply) also include:
- A courteous, knowledgeable and uniformed (i.e., black tuxedo) chauffeur
- A 9-ft. red carpet rolled out for the wedding party
- A "Just Married" sign on the back of the limousine
- A tuxedo hat champagne stand (that matches the chauffeur's tuxedo) for the bottle of champagne that the client may provide (it is actually illegal for a limousine service to provide alcohol without a liquor license)
- The interior will sparkle with real crystal champagne flutes and rock glasses, and ice chests stocked with ice (again, the client must provide any beverages) We'll also provide color-coordinated napkins folded in each glass that matches the wedding party's colors.
- We'll also include a disposable camera to capture and remember your limousine experience.
When does my time start on a limousine rental?
For bookings in the Quad Cities, your time begins when our chauffeur arrives at your "doorstep". For any pick-ups or drop-offs outside the four Quad Cities, the time begins/ends when the chauffeur leaves/returns from downtown Davenport.
Am I charged for waiting time?
A limousine is booked for a certain time allotment and the client is charged accordingly. We offer discounted hourly rates for multiple, consecutive hour bookings. Single, "split" hours command a higher premium, but can allow the client to avoid paying for down-time that's not needed.
Is there a minimum or maximum amount of time I have to rent a limousine?
Our minimum rental is one hour, which cannot be split up; the maximum time is up to the client.
What colors are your limousines?
Because of our brides' overwhelming preference, our most popular Excursion SUV limousine is white with two-tone tan leather interior. Our Cadillac Escalade SUV is platinum (silver/gold) with tan leather interior.
How can I know my driver will be there on time? And will he wait on us while we are at a dinner, dance, or other type of occasion?
All of our limousines are booked on a dedicated format. When you lease a limousine, it will provide exclusive service to you for the time that you book it. The chauffeur will not leave while you are dining (to pick up someone else), and then rush back to pick you up. We never double book a limousine.
Is limousine service expensive?
Simply put, yes. But our services are competitively priced for what you'll receive (the highest quality SUV limousine and professional and courteous chauffeur), and the services that we offer are dedicated to make our clients' experiences a memorable occasion enriched with amenities. Cheap limousines are better known as taxis.
How can I pay for limousine services?
A deposit (50% of the total bill) is required to reserve a limousine for services, and the balance for the initial scheduled time is due the week prior to the date of service. Any additional time used (subject to availability of the limousine) will be charged and due at the end of the service. Payments may be made with cash, local check, money order, or credit card (MasterCard or VISA).
Are all limousines in the Quad Cities Area (QCA) the same?
Absolutely not! Limos in the QCA vary in many ways (e.g., vehicle model, passenger capacity, age, condition, mileage, etc.) For a full understanding of what your limo options in the QCA look like, we encourage you to take the time to see any limousine in person before ever paying a deposit or signing any contract (every reputable limousine company offers its customers a written contract).
Are all limousines safe, certified and fully insured?
Unfortunately not! Please demand from any limousine company you're considering, a proof of insurance, as well as their US DOT certification.
Is Custom Limousines properly insured?
ABSOLUTELY! We will happily provide you a copy of our required $1.5 million liability insurance certification.
In addition to your basic rental rates, are there any other costs or surcharges to consider?
The State of Iowa charges 7% sales tax for limousine bookings in Iowa. The State of Illinois does not charge any sales tax on limousine service. While we do not mandate any gratuity for the chauffeur, it is always greatly appreciated by us (and the driver) if the client remembers a tip for the excellent service the chauffeur provides. Industry guidelines offer 10-20% of the cost of the limousine service, with the specific amount to be based on the level and quality of the service that the client feels the chauffeur has provided.
Is smoking allowed in your limousines?
In all of our vehicles, smoking is strictly prohibited. This policy allows us to maintain the highest quality fleet of vehicles in the Quad Cities Area. However, our chauffeurs will gladly stop as frequently as guests may need to get out of the limousine and enjoy a smoke.
Do you go to O'Hare and/or Midway Airports?
No, we are one of the few companies in the Quad Cities Area that does not do airport runs as part of our service. Several of our competitors already do a fine job offering this type of service. Quite frankly, most clients looking for airport transfers just want a cheap ride to Chicago. Our luxurious fleet of Custom Limousines & Exotic Cars is better utilized serving the other segments of the QCA limousine business. Please don't misunderstand our focus
we would still love to take a group of you on a shopping spree in the Windy City, to a sporting event out of town, or anywhere else you desire to travel in style. Airport runs just aren't our niche.
Why should I choose your company as my limousine service provider?
Custom Limousines & Exotic Cars is a locally owned and operated service that's been in business since February 4, 1991. We pride ourselves in providing the finest quality and first-class luxury in chauffeured limousine transportation services. We are the Quad Cities' only limousine service provider that can offer our clients such a wide choice of limousines and specialty vehicles, while also guaranteeing total satisfaction.