Operations

It’s All About The Service

Jim Luff
Posted on January 5, 2018

It isn’t enough to simply tuck a few bottles of water into the seat pocket or cup holders.  A passenger who has been confined to a long flight for hours usually appreciates cold water since it relieves a dry mouth and skin. Additionally, items such as breath mints, gum, candies, tissues, newspapers, magazines, restaurant guides, electronic device charging cords, and local information are all helpful amenities clients  will likely value.

Make An Offer

A TNC driver will follow his GPS and deliver a passenger from Point A to Point B without any consideration of stops that might need to be made. We all know the pick-up location and the drop-off location represent the beginning and end of the transportation service. Offering to stop at a convenience store, a fast-food restaurant, or even points of interest adds value. A passenger may falsely believe (a common thought) no stops are allowed. To ask, “Did you need to stop anywhere along the way such as a convenience store or to grab a bite to eat?” puts the passenger at ease about asking for such a stop. There should be no mention of wait fees or additional charges unless the stop is likely to be substantial. The rates charged for airport transfers will more than cover a five to 10 minute stop for the passenger’s convenience.

Be Helpful and Informative

While the general rule is chauffeurs are not to speak unless spoken to, there is nothing wrong with beginning service with an introduction, a verbal confirmation of the destination, and an invitation to make a stop. Additionally, asking a passenger if they need any information about the city or any services that might be needed may be more useful than you can imagine. Make sure the passenger feels comfortable talking to you if they have a need. Offering information is a service that sets apart chauffeurs of luxury transportation from TNC vehicle drivers.

Solving Problems The Right Way

When Service Failures Occur

On occasion, service failures are bound to happen. Whether it is caused by traffic, a mechanical failure, accidents, or human error, it happens. The most important things to remember are to treat the client the way you would want to be treated, and never argue or attempt to justify a failure. No matter what the reason, it is likely your client doesn’t care. Own the failure and make good using one of these methods:

No. 1: How Can I Make Things Right?

This is the absolute best method for addressing a failure. Apologize and ask the client how you can make things right. Mostly, they don’t even know what they want. Given a moment to think about it, they may ask for a complete refund, a partial refund, a free ride in the future, or maybe as little as taking $10 off their bill. Whatever their answer, if it is reasonable for the error, give it to them. It’s one ride, but one person can spread information about the incident to hundreds of people who might never use your service as a result. Think about the big picture and not just this one ride. You want the client to keep being a client.

No. 2: Over The Top

You know when you have failed. Address it before the client even has a chance.  Be the one to contact them instead of waiting for them you to contact you. Let them know you are aware of the error and already have adjusted their bill. 

Attach a gift certificate for a 50% off ride or even a two-hour comp ride in the future. The bottom line here is to create a “wow factor.” If they tell their story to anyone about your failure, they will add, “And, you know what they did to make it right?” This is a forward-looking resolution.

Great Ideas provides a broad range of information focused on new ideas and approaches in management, human resources, customer service, marketing, networking and technology. Have something to share or would like covered? You can reach LCT contributing editor and California operator Jim Luff at [email protected]

Related Topics: chauffeur behavior, chauffeur training, customer service, onboard amenities, VIP service

Jim Luff Contributing Editor
Comments ( 1 )
  • Anthony

     | about 11 days ago

    The biggest failure i was aware of happended at the san diego super bowl... empire/cls had farmed some jobs to a so called affiliate. The passenger in the limousine was John Elway and he had 7 footballs with him to have signed by specific players.... at the end of the night 1 football was missing :( Empire/cls called the affiliate and demanded the owner get the football from the driver (the driver had taken the football) Football was returned and i believe empire/cls did not pay that company the 10k in jobs for the week

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