New York Limousine Service vs. Uber: The Real Difference
We get a lot of questions from our clients about Uber as it seems like they are always in the news lately with positive and negative press. But many business travelers in New York really don’t know the difference between a traditional limousine, executive ground transportation service and Uber. So we wanted to help you out.
Let’s get started with Uber since they are a new alternative app-based company that is an alternative to taxi service and we don’t really view them as a competitor. Uber has an easy-to-use app for your smartphone and their pricing is comparable to that of taxi, but they are missing some critical components that are different then a traditional limousine service that focuses on the business traveler and corporate segments.
Who Owns the Vehicles?
Uber doesn’t own their vehicles. They use a combination of people that drive their own personal vehicles for UberX and small mom and pop companies to supply their vehicles for their other service offerings.
Most New York Limousine services like Friendly Ride own and maintain their fleet of vehicles in-house, which is important from a safety, cleanliness, and maintenance point for the customer.
Chauffeur Training and Quality
At Friendly Ride our chauffeurs are employees and a part of our family. They must complete an extensive training program, be approved and licensed by the New York TLC, and pass our driver safety training prior to hitting the road for their first trip.
We also have an ongoing training and education program in place that each chauffeur must complete to continue to educate them on safety as well as the city and local events for the business traveler or tourist visiting our beloved city.
For UberX service you are getting an ‘average Joe’ driving his personal vehicle and the driver (notice I didn’t use the word – chauffeur) may show up in jeans and a t-shirt. And who knows what type of training they do or do not go through.
All of our chauffeurs are professionals serving professionals so they are attired in dark suits to represent you well when we drop you off at the airport or a business meeting.
Uber is an “On Demand” app that is great when you need to get from point A to point B and you don’t want to grab a taxi. But what about when you need to make multiple stops for meetings or want your vehicle to wait for you while you and your business associates are having dinner at Peter Lugars Steakhouse in Brooklyn?
Your Uber vehicle doesn’t wait for you while you are at dinner or in a meeting. We do.
If you have a group or corporate event and need multiple vehicles, then Uber won’t work. You will need a limousine service that is experienced to manage your logistics. This is why we have customer service reps and dispatchers to manage traffic patterns, multiple pick-up and drop-off locations, and even manifests for large groups that require shuttles or buses.
When you make the decision to use a limousine service that specializes in executive ground transportation you know exactly what vehicle you will get when you make your reservation. This is something that is very important to our clients as many don’t want to be picked up for a night on Broadway in a silver Kia Optima. Now there is nothing wrong with a Kia, but our client’s want to know they are getting a Mercedes or a town car and most importantly that they can ride comfortably and that the chauffeur knows where they are going and the best route to get there.
If you use Uber you will not be sure exactly what type of vehicle you will get until you placed your order.
There is nothing wrong with Uber. As a matter of fact I have used Uber myself in New York City. The point here is to educate you on the differences between Uber and a New York Limousine service so you can make the decision before you purchase if you want a managed and professional experience or a taxi alternative.