Industry sector: Transport

Limousine hire: Pricing policy

Getting the price right is very important. You must make sure that the price you charge is enough to cover all of your operating costs, including your own drawings. You may find that you have to price broadly in line with your immediate competitors unless you are providing a service that your competitors do not offer. This might be the case if, for example, you are offering unusual vehicles, such as vintage limousines or luxury cars.

Unlike taxis, limousines are mostly hired for a fee based on the time they are required for, rather than the distance covered. Limousines may be hired on an hourly, daily, weekly or weekend basis. Most limousine hire firms set a minimum hire period - for example three hours. The price charged will also vary with the size and value of the vehicle provided and any extra services included.

Sometimes prices are set on a fixed basis for a particular journey - for example from central London to Heathrow or Gatwick airport. Fixed prices are also generally charged for wedding hire.

Reductions for quieter periods

Most weddings take place at weekends leaving wedding cars underused during the week, so it is common to offer a discount for midweek weddings. Similarly, stretched limousines are generally most in demand for social events at weekends, and many businesses offer a lower rate from Monday to Thursday. The situation is typically reversed for chauffeur driven luxury cars and MPVs - because these are often used for business purposes, they tend to be busiest during the week and may be offered for a lower rate at weekends.

Whether or not you decide to offer reductions, remember that limousine hire is usually offered by several firms in any given area, so it is likely that potential customers will shop around to compare prices. Find out how much your competitors charge and set your prices accordingly.

Other special offers and discounts

You may choose to offer a discount as a matter of course to your trade customers. How much discount will depend on your pricing policy and how much local competition there is.