Waiting Near the Wings

Posted on April 5, 2010 by - Also by this author

LOS ANGELES The office of operator Avi Karpel has a wide interior glass window that looks out over a rear garage. Lincoln Town Car Executive Ls and black Mercedes sedans glide in and out for car washes and interior cleanings throughout the day as workers turn around the vehicles for client runs.

Located just two minutes outside of the Los Angeles International Airport, A-List Limousine Service Inc. needs to keep its attention on the details.

"We will not connect our chauffeurs between jobs where we can risk a job," owner Avi Karpel said. "We are looking at flawless execution on each and every job, and that is priceless to any operator. Once the reservation lands on our desk, we provide a peace of mind, and it will be perfectly executed."

A-List Limousine Service Inc. operates out of a renovated commercial warehouse unit it bought in 2006. The offices and garage were built to A-List's specifications, featuring the latest technology in surveillance cameras, surround sound music, and a complete communication utility room which holds the servers that run 24/7. The servers are capable of receiving reservations from major clients and travel agencies such a Carson Wagonlit and BCD Travel, which are preferred vendors.


With its location next to LAX, A-List has to be prepared for demand that can spike at any time, given its heavy corporate clientele, flight delays and schedule changes, and last-minute calls from affiliates needing a run.

In fact, A-List gets much of its business from affiliates who can rely on an operator close to LAX that can respond immediately to airport requests and serve as troubleshooters to pick up client runs. "We're very affiliate friendly," said Vice President Johne Baker. "We picked up a lot of business in 2009 and helped a lot of operators."

Many affiliates through the country favor A-List Limousine Service because of its fast response to email or phone requests, its ability to pick up at LAX within minutes, and the fact that it has a stand-by chauffeur available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

Karpel met Baker via a farm-out run that he was handling for the local company where Baker worked as a sales and marketing director. The pair clicked and Baker came to work with Karpel full-time. Karpel now handles the finances and management while Baker takes care of sales, marketing, and affiliate relationships.

In 2005, A-List bought two limousine companies in the Thousand Oaks and Camarillo area that enables it to serve clients efficiently from Orange County and the greater Los Angeles area through Ventura County to Santa Barbara. 

A-List's 5 Rules for Success

1. Training:
Extensive chauffeur training and follow-up. A-List uses Tom Mazza NLA-approved training programs, teaches defensive driving, uses ride-a-long instruction for new chauffeurs, and conducts spot checks and “ghost rides” to rate chauffeurs for behind-the-wheel performance.

2. Treatment
Everyone gets treated as a V.I.P. on the “A-List.” Clients are more likely to remember you, and first-timers are all potential repeat clients when they experience attentive, seamless, and personalized services from start to finish.

3. Cleanliness
Constant cleanliness. Vehicles are washed and cleaned inside at all times. Each vehicle is cleaned thoroughly between client runs, even between short airport runs. Chauffeurs who take vehicles home overnight must park them in garages and are responsible for “automatic amenities” such as water, newspapers, hand wipes, Kleenex, treats, etc.

4. Affiliate
Network constantly for affiliate work. A-List makes clear that it serves all major destinations; “One Call Books All” of a client’s transportation needs worldwide. Its executives are on the phone daily looking for new affiliates in every city and location while networking with major city operators.

5. Technology
Use advanced technology. The combination of office software, the latest updated fleet software, satellite GPS, Bluetooth cell phones for chauffeurs, and flight tracking ensure smooth communication and minimal missteps. A-List is directly connected to the travel services of Carlson-Wagonlit Travel, which is a major travel management source of business clients.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Johnny Greene Killed in Traffic Accident

Noted industry veteran founded ETS International

New York Operator Sees Payoff Bringing Staff To LCT East

Legends Limousines’ CEO Robert Xavier says trade shows spur staff to ‘think outside the box.’

Last Chance! People’s Choice Awards Close Out Oct. 14

Help celebrate the best operators in the industry by suggesting who you think has done something extraordinary.

Trump Taj Mahal Closes For Good On Oct. 10

Historical footnote: Once a grand and gaudy monument to the Trump brand, the casino-hotel had a presence in the limousine industry.

Harrah's Atlantic City To Get Upgrades For 2017

The casino-complex will renovate many of its rooms, food court, and night club, just in time for LCT's East Show next Fall.

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment



See More

See More

See More

See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - October 2016 $12.95 COVER STORY: * Leverage Tech To Levitate Your Operations * *


Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment


Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close