How to start your own limousine business
| 9th April 2019
Fancy chauffeuring people around for a living but looking for something a little more luxurious than the taxi driver life? The limousine business offers the opportunity to share in people’s special occasions, not to mention drive the odd high-profile person around.
More importantly, once you’re up and running, you’ll be offering a lucrative service that brings in big money each time you head out.
Sound like the option for you? Great. So, where on earth do you start? Here are some of things you need to be thinking about.
Know the Clientele
You need to be sure why you’re getting into the business before you actually make the leap. While you might meet the occasional celebrity, limo driving isn’t all glitz and glam and will be defined heavily by your market.
You can go for the corporate market, where you will be transporting business people from point to point, or the occasional market, where you’ll be the transport element of people’s special occasions.
Both markets bring demanding clients with high expectations, the latter also brings potentially drunk and rowdy groups on a regular basis, so things can get messy.
What’s the USP?
Once you’ve defined your market, you need to think about how you will build a portfolio. As in any business, you need to find a clear USP to separate you from the competition.
This may be the type of vehicle you supply; are you going for the slick classic limo or a stretch Hummer with a full internal disco? Maybe you want to target a younger market for graduations, or look specifically at hen and stag parties?
It doesn’t have to be anything spectacular, either. You can simply provide a level of finesse your competition doesn’t in terms of on-board luxury, or offer a reliability and efficiency of service that your competitors don’t.
Buying a Limo and Other Start-up Costs
As mentioned above, a limo business is potentially very lucrative. You’ll be charging hundreds of pounds at a time which represents exceptional mark up on your running costs, however you must recognise the significant start-up costs associated with the industry.
Buying your limo is the most obvious expense. Depending on the type of client you’re targeting you’ll need a certain standard of vehicle, and you can expect to pay anywhere from £10,000 upwards for even the most basic model.
You’ll need correct licensing, the right insurance and have staff costs to consider if you’re hiring a driver. Once you’re up and running, you’ll also have marketing costs to cover, which brings us nicely onto…
Marketing Your Brand
Again, not so much a point specific to a limo business, but getting your brand’s name out there initially will be crucial to your success. Without a solid marketing campaign, you will not find business, and good marketing is essential to support an expectedly slow start-up phase whilst you build your clientele.
Make the most of social media, build a good website and offer big introductory deals to attract your initial customer base. As with pretty much every business, it’s about getting people through the door for the first time, so the emphasis on advertising your services at the beginning should not be underestimated.
If you feel comfortable with these aspects of the industry, then you should be able to start your path to your very own limo business.