Chauffeured Transportation's Largest Fleets

LCT Staff
Posted on July 1, 2003

The top 75 questionnaires are in and the results are tallied; if the number of vehicles in your fleet has declined since last year, you’re not alone. So have the fleets of 56% of the operators that made this year’s Top 75 ranking. A third reported a gain in fleet size, and 8% remained the same size as in 2002.

The largest fleet size registered by a single operation this year was 397 vehicles, down from 2002’s 524 vehicles. The cutoff to make the Top 75 list was 47 vehicles, up two cars from 2002.

The Top 75 fleets lost a total of 638 vehicles, or 8% of their combined vehicles. That average out to each operation losing about 10 cars, which comes as no surprise to Tom Mazza, executive director of the National Limousine Association.

Twenty percent of the business travel market has disappeared since 9/11 and is still gone. That means 20% less airplanes and 20% fewer cars needed to do airport work,” Mazza said. “It all stems from that.”

One type of vehicle that did make a greater presence in fleets from last year -- despite high gas prices -- is SUVs.

Two thirds of the largest 75 fleets reported notable increases in the number of SUVs was not featured in last year’s survey; some operations might not have reported SUVs under the “others” category.

“This generation of special-occasion buyers those in the 18 to 24 year old category are looking more for an SUV than they are for a traditional vehicle,” Mazza said. “So operators that are looking to buy a new vehicle are looking at SUVs.”


Questionnaires were sent to several hundred chauffeured transportation operators in April. Nearly 200 completed forms were returned and LCT editors contacted a number of operators who failed to respond to the initial questionnaire.

The rankings are based on total fleet size for each operation and include limousines, sedans, SUVs, vans/shuttles, motorcoaches and other luxury transportation vehicles.

The ranking represent fleets in a single metropolitan area. This means the large national firms- Carry, Dav El, BostonCoach, CLS Worldwide and Music Express – have several entries in the Top 75.

Operators were required to authorize LCT editors to contact their insurance companies to verify fleet sizes; the information supplied by many operators was verified with their agents.

Four companies that reportedly had fleets large enough to include them in this year’s Top 75 either declined to participate after repeated efforts asking them to do so: Mears Transportation Group, Orlando; Carey Kansas City (formerly Coach USA); Ambassador Limousine, Las Vegas, and Executive Limousines of Long Island, Coram, N.Y., were not included in this year’s ranking.

Yet, despite declining fleet sizes, there were apparently very few mergers or buyouts among the Top 75 city operations. One exception is California Wine Tours, which acquired Evans Airport Service earlier this year and made the Top 75 for the first time at #21.

Not surprisingly, the metropolitan area with the greatest number of large fleets was Greater New York City. Twenty-four of the fleets on the Top 75 list are based here.

The metropolitan areas with the next greatest number of Top 75 fleets were South Florida, with six. Los Angles and Chicago with five each, Boston with four and Washington, D.C., with three.

Las Vegas was home to three of the largest fleets: #1 Bell Trans; #6 CLS’s Las Vegas facility; and #40 On Demand Sedan & Limousine. Ambassador Limousine, another Las Vegas operation. Would probably have made the list but officials there failed to return the survey despite numbers reminders.

There is no direct evidence that any company that made the 2002 Top 75 list went out of business in the past year.

    Number of Vehicles   
2003 ranking CompanyLocation      Total   Fleet Size  limousines 
  Shuttle Buses 
  Motor coaches 
1Bell TransLas Vegas, NV3972403321110803 limo buswww.bell-trans.comBrest Bell, pres.; Breck Opeka, GM
2Carey New YorkLong Island City, NY36511338311203www.careyint.comEd Martinez, regional VP
3Empire InternationalNorwood NJ34814309413304 Benz, 1BMWwww.empireint.comDavid Seelinger, pres/CEO
4Carey ChicagoChicago, IL24814389331000www.careyint.comSal Milazzo, regional VP
5A-1 LimousinePrinceton, NJ22640156016293 mini buswww.a1limo.comJeffrey and Michael Starr
6CLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services, Las VegasLas Vegas, NV215113515103423www.clsimo.comCharlie Horky, owner; Randy King, GM
7Boston Coach, New JerseyElisabeth, NJ194219200000www.bostoncoach.comRuss Cooke, pres,; Lou Carlucci, mgr.
8Dav El New YorkLong Island City, NY190749798200www.davel.comScott Solombrino, pres./CEO
9Metro CarsTaylor, MI18941162134941 limo 
10A-1 Airport Limousine ServiceBloomingdale, IL1795312600000www.a1limousine.comRita Meredith, pres.; Jim Miller, GM
11BostoncoachEverett, MA17601360142150www.bostoncoach.comRuss Cooke, pres.; Rick Cavalier, mgr.
12Air Brook LimousineRochelle Park, NJ172412202501011www.airbrook.comDonald Petroski, pres.; James Dziekonski, exec. VP
13King Limousine & Transportation ServiceKing of Prussia, PA15823914152500www.kinglimousine.comRobert G. Euler, pres.; Mike Kulaga, GM
14CLS Worldwide Chauffeured Service, Los AngelesSherman Oaks, CA151355781811220 Mercedeswww.clslimo.comCharlie Horky, owner; Joey Henriques, GM
15Flyte Tyme LimousineMahwah, NJ1507120514400www.flytetymelimo.comTimothy Rose, pres.; Allen Seratin, CEO
16CLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services, New YorkBrooklyn, NY147326010147222 Mercedeswww.clslimo.comCharlie Horkey, owner, Leon Reitzenstein, VP/GM
17Diva LimousineHollywood, CA13541681212200www.clivalimo.comBijan Zoughi, pres/CEO; Israel Juarez, GM
18Carey BostonBraintree, MA125710408420www.careyint.comPhil Gilpin, regional VP; Joe Winstanley, GM
19ExecucarPhoenix, AZ125012005000www.execucar.comMike O’Conner, VP; Jeff Conly, managing director.
20Tri County TransportationFT. Lauderdale, FL125095030000www.floridalimo.comLorraine Celestino Wilde
21California Wine ToursNAPA, CA124232731036250www.californiawinetours.comMichael Marino, pres,; Richard Marino, VP
22Leros Point To PointThornwood, NY1223108011000www.leroslimo.comLonnie Lehrer, pres.; John Nyikos, COO
23Dav El BostonChelsea, MA1204451814300www.davel.comScott Solombrino, pres/CEO
24Black Tie TransporationPleasanton, CA11928531142201 School buswww.blacktietrans.comWilliam Wheeler, pres/CEO
25TranstyleScottsdale, AZ114710052000www.transtyle.comFred Sadeghi, pres.
26Atlantic LimousineAtlantic City, NJ110916111100www.atlanticlimo.comCarl Geiger
27Royal Coachman LimitedOrange, NJ109784016200www.royalcoachman.comRobert Epstein, pres/owner; Jon Epstein, VP/owned
28West Suburban Traveler’s LimousineWinfield, IL107297800000www.westsublimo.comBarbara Simkus, bus. mgr.
29Music ExpressBurbank, limo.comRita Berkman, pres.; Cheryl Berkman, CEO
30Farrell’s Limousine ServiceNew York, NY102157944000 Mike Farrell
31London TowncarsLong Island City, NY10198225300www.londontowncars.comStephen W. Spencer, pres,; Stephen L. Spencer, VR
32Carey South Florida, Miami/Palm BeachN. Miami, FL998522102700www.careyint.comMike Sobol, regional VP
33Hy’s Livery ServiceWest Haven, CT994531030020 hearseswww.hyslivery.comRobert Levine, pres/owner
34Arrow Limousine ServiceRed Bank, NJ96127248000www.arrowlimo.comRoger Somers, pres,; Edward Somers, VP
35Dav El Los AngelesHawthorne, CA93324666300www.davel.comScott Solombrino, pres./CEO
36Reston Limousine ServiceSterling, VA93792254901 truckwww.restonlimo.comKristina Bouweiri, VP/CEO
37The Driver ProviderPhoenix, AZ916513161401 turtle vanwww.driverprovider.comJason R. Kaplan, pres.
38Rody’s Limousine ServiceCos Cob, CT8887343000www.rudyslimousine.comDany Spezzano, pres,; Roy Spezzano, CEO
39A Harrington Limousine Service/Wilner’s LiveryEdison, NJ872518202040 hearseswww.harringtonlimo.comDavid Wilner, owner; Jonathan Wilner, VP
40Connecticut LimoMilford, CT853303603310www.ct. limo.comAndy Anastasio, owner/mgr.
41Music Express EastElmwood Park, NJ85125779000www.musiclimo.comRita Berkman, pres,; Cheryl Berkman, CEO
42On Demand Sedan & LimousineLas Vegas, NV852740241200www.odslimo.comBrad (B.J.) Balaban, pres.
43Tran-Star Executive Transportation ServicesNorth Babylon, NY85106825000www.tranexec.comMichael Rice, pres,; Linda Paul, exec. VP
44International Limousine ServiceWashington, DC847241123901 service vehiclewww.internationallimo.comEugene Kane, pres/CEO; Richard Kane, exec. VP/CO
45MTC Limousine & Corporate CoachBedford Hills, NY8135466480www.MTClimousine.comTrevor Franklin, CEO
46O’Hare-Midway Limousine ServicesDeerfield, IL80651500000www.ohare-midway.comGeorge Parker, pres.; Greg Eggen, VP/GM
47Classic TransportationBohemia, NY781080362211trolleywww.classictrans.comWilliam Schoolman, pres.
48Dav El New JerseyLinde, NJ781443316200www.davel.comScott Solombrino, pres/CEO
49Aventura Limousine & Transportation ServiceN. Miami, FL7712325131050www.aventuralimo.comNeil Goodman, pres,; Ron Sorci, CEO
50Excel Worldwide TransportationNew Rochelle, NY75105544002 stretch SUVswww.excel-transportation.comRichard J. Guberti, pres.
51Tropiano Transportation ServiceDresher, PA754250321400 Nick Tropiano, pres,; Wayne Herbott, GM

We asked some of the Top 75 chauffeured transportation operators what was the most important advice they could offer smaller operators.

Kristin Bouweiri, Reston Limousine Service, Sterling, Va.

Be careful about increasing the size of your fleet because you don’t want to get into a situation where you have so many vehicles that you can’t keep them busy. It’s better to farm work out than to buy more vehicles if you get really busy.

Brent Bell, Bell Trans, Las Vegas

Be flexible, I don’t think you can make it in this business just trying to serve one particular market or one particular need or niche. You’ve got to be flexible with not only the customer you’re going after but the type of vehicle that you’re offering and time frame or parameters that you offer you service

Cheryl Berkman, Music Express, Los Angeles

Be a hands-on owner. Be there for the client and for the employees. That’s most important

Neil Goodman, Aventura Limousine & Transportation Service, North Miami, Fla.

Exposure. Get out there and attend chamber of commerce meetings, affiliate meetings and associate meetings. Radio advertising is a good way to start, just like mass mailings. Get you picture taken with as many different associations as you can. Make friends with the photographer.

Robert G. Euler, King Limousine & Transportation Service King of Prussia, Pa

Take care of your customers and take care of your employees.

Timothy Rose, Flyte Tyme Limousine, Mahawah, N.J.

Unfortunately, in the eyes of your clients, you’re only as good as your last performance. Strive for consistency in your service levels.

Trevor Franklin, MTC Limousine, Bredford Hills, N.Y

I’d like to eliminate the low-ball operator who has no grasp of what his expenses are, or what his profit is and just comes in and grabs market share through low prices. How can somebody do it for 40% less than everybody else? You know that’s impossible. They’re a negative force in the industry

Ed Martinez, Carey New York, New York

The dishonest operators, the hustlers who make the playing field not level. Business people play by the rules. So, I’d do something about people who don’t play by the rules.

Michael Marino, California Wine Tours, Napa, Calif

I would impose tighter regulations and guidelines for chauffeurs’ licensing. Right now, at least in California, you only need a commercial license to drive people for hire. Doesn’t it make sense, since people are paying for a chauffeur, that the regulation for the medical requirement and the commercial license should extend to even a [sedan]?

Michael Fogarty, Boston Coach, Everett, Mass

Economic conditions have created tremendous price pressure and many customers are shopping strictly on price. This phenomenon is bad for both operators and customers. Customers are finding out the hard way that [making a commodity of] ground transportation is resulting in lower service and less choices for the consumer.

Barbara Pastelak, Gem Limousine Service, Woodbridge, NJ.

I would change the way people think about our industry. I would want people to think we were legitimate and more professional; perhaps a stronger overall image and reputation for the industry.

Gary Bauer, Bauer’s Limousine Service, San Francisco

Gas guzzler is a major problem, something that we’re all dealing with right now. It’s very expensive for the large and small operators. Some only make $200,000 a year in revenue and they are paying anywhere from $1,300 to $2,000 per vehicle, so they can’t turn their fleet over as often as they should.

Related Topics: largest fleets

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