A Horrible Experience As A Mystery Rider

Jim Luff
Posted on September 12, 2016

I was recently asked by an operator to serve as a mystery rider to evaluate a chauffeur. I should mention the company I did the "work" for was a former competitor before my retirement. Personally, I think his offer to give me a limo for a night on the town in exchange for the evaluation was brilliant. While I would love to reveal the company name, the odds are high I will do it again and my cover could be blown. Let's get on to the ride details:

The eight-passenger stretch arrived early. There was plenty of ice in the ice wells on arrival, and a bottle of champagne with not a glass in sight. Oops. When I asked the chauffeur about glassware, he said he forgot to put it in but had some red solo cups with him. Champagne in a red solo...tacky!

(LCT file image)
(LCT file image)
As we loaded up in the limo, the chauffeur asked where we were headed. We gave him the name of a very popular restaurant called Wiki's. He asked what a Wiki was. We explained it was a restaurant located at Ming Avenue and Buena Vista Road. He asked how to get to the location. Things were fading fast. Despite the directions given, he got lost and made a U-turn at a busy intersection in the stretch limo. That was about a 5-point turn-about. We made it to Wiki's...eventually.

Next, we wanted to go to a new nightclub in town. It's very popular right now, but apparently our chauffeur never heard of it. Once again, we gave directions. We ended up in the middle of a residential area cruising around. I asked everyone in the limo if they had asked for someone else to be picked up at a house. No one did and we are still unclear what that detour was about. We finally made it to the club.

When we came out of the club, we were ready to go home. For me, that was three blocks away. I had guests that lived in a neighboring community about 30 miles away. That was the very first pick up location and I was the last. I didn't realize it until it was too late that I would be going for a 60-mile drive before getting dropped off at my house since he was going to go in the same order of pickups.

The moral of the story: Do you know what thought process your chauffeur is using to make decisions? Are they trained properly? Are they aware of what is trending in the area? Needless to say, this "chauffeur" (ummm, I mean driver) got an "F" for his final grade. Your thoughts?

Related Topics: chauffeur behavior, chauffeur training, customer service, Jim Luff, retail markets, Shop Talk blog, stretch limousine

Jim Luff Contributing Editor
Comments ( 3 )
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  • Paul Hulsman

     | about 3 years ago

    Having worked in the industry for 20 years I have gained the knowledge on what it takes to deliver quality customer service. And oddly enough that seems to be something that is lacking. And it is very hard to find people who understand how to deal with people.

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