THE HISTORY OF LIMOUSINES
Limousines are one of the oldest modes of transportation, and the perception of limousines as a luxurious mode of transportation dates back to the 1700s when horses pulled golden limousines like carriages and the rich could take rides in them. The first engine-powered limousine was developed in the French province of Limoges in 1902 and its name Limousine was derived from the word Limoges.
Limousines are well-known for their style, safety, comfort, and ease of transportation. They are also a versatile form of transportation, with limo service companies popping up in Singapore and around the world. Limousines can be used for almost any situation, from Airport Transfers to celebrating a special event, weddings, and even on a tour.
When the term “limousine” is mentioned, most people envision a typical stretch limousine; however, limousines come in a variety of shapes and sizes; the term “limousine” actually refers to any vehicle in which the driver compartment and the passenger cabin are separated from each other. Although many limousines have wheelbases that are longer or wider than normal, any chauffeured vehicle, such as an executive sedan or large SUV, can be considered a limousine. Many limousine services in Singapore now offer a variety of vehicles to their clients.
PART 1: ALL ABOUT LIMOUSINES AND MAXICAB®
1.1. MAXICAB® AND THE HISTORY OF CABS IN SINGAPORE
Rickshaws were imported from Japan since the 1880s and they were widely used in Singapore by both the upper and lower classes prior to the 1920s. These two-wheeled cabs pulled by a man were a major form of transport up until 1947 when they were banned.
In 1920, engine-driven type of taxi-cabs were first introduced into Singapore, charging passengers a rate of 40 cents per mile (1.6km), with an additional 10 cents every quarter mile (400 metres). Borneo Motors Limited then imported a taximeter into Singapore as an experimental device in 1930, these taximeters were imported from the United Kingdom and were not compulsory for taxis until years after World War II.
The 1930s then saw the rise in yellow top taxis, brought in by the Wearne Brothers; the sole agent of Ford cars in the Straits Settlements.
The City Council of Singapore introduced taximeters on a larger scale in the early 1950s in order to provide a fairer service to the public; however, this was met with opposition from taxi drivers, who believed that it would disrupt their business. By the end of 1953, however, all taxis in Singapore were required to have taximeters installed.
With the addition of more taxis in 1957, Singapore’s taxi fleet grew to 11,500 units by the end of the 1950s. This, as well as other new measures such as the installation of radio telephones and the restriction of free taxi travel between Singapore and the Federation of Malaya, elicited negative reactions from taxi drivers.
In the 1960s, Singapore saw an increase in pirate taxis. Anyone could register their private cars as taxi and use them to ferry passengers at unreasonable rates, they were uninsured and often overcrowded with passengers, and the number of pirate taxis grew to as many as 4,000.
The number of pirate taxis in Singapore increased to 4,000 units in the 1960s. This was due to the fact that anyone could register their private cars as taxis, resulting in a slew of pirate taxi drivers ferrying passengers at exorbitant rates. In 1966, A government-appointed committee increased penalties (higher fines and prison terms of up to six months) for pirate taxi operators and implemented a diesel tax, which aided in officially ridding Singapore of pirate taxis in 1971.
Air-conditioned taxis were introduced in 1977, and more measures were implemented in the 1980s, such as making front-seat seat belts compulsory, and the installation of electronic meters in all taxis.
The CityCab we know today was formed in 1995 through the merger of Singapore Airport Bus Services (SABS), SBS Taxi, and Singapore Commuters, and it was the first taxi company in Singapore to launch a fleet of Mercedes E300 taxis. In the late 1990s, CityCab also introduced the MaxiCab, a 7-seater that is now a popular mode of transportation for large groups of people in Singapore, particularly for Airport Transfers.
1.2 TYPES OF LIMOUSINES
Limousine services in Singapore are commonly seen in the form of Limo cabs, and most often spotted in Singapore Airport Transfers. Limousines come in a variety of shapes and sizes to house a varying number of people and provide different solutions to differing transportation needs. Here are some of the types of limousines available around the world:
1. Stretch Limousine
A coach company named Armbruster created the stretch limousine around 1928, in Fort Smith, Arkansas. The stretch limos are essentially extended versions of a large sedan, featuring a lengthened wheelbase that is typically around 10 metres long. They can comfortably seat up to six people and are typically outfitted with television screens, tinted windows, an entertainment system, fiber optic lighting and a full beverage refrigerator.
Stretch limos are often used for weddings and the transportation of important people, but they can also be used by hotels, airlines, and tour companies.
2. Executive SUV limo
Executive SUV limos typically sport luxurious leather seats, wood trims and cup holders in the passenger seating area. They can seat up to three passengers and fit large amounts of luggage in the huge trunk. This is a highly popular chauffeur service because of its luxurious and spacious interior and is most popularly used for Airport Transfers.
3. Luxury Passenger Van
Luxury passenger vans are often fitted with leather seats, tables with cup holders and wood flooring. It is an option for businesses that need corporate limousine services for up to 14 people, an ideal mode of transportation for Airport Transfers and other large group transportation needs.
4. Stretch SUV
If you need a luxurious chauffeur service in Singapore for special events but a stretch limo is too small for you, consider a stretch SUV, which has the same amenities as a stretch limo but can accommodate up to 14 passengers, making it ideal for medium-sized group transportation during events.
5. Limo Bus
Limo buses are ideal for parties with up to 30 people, they are great if you do not want to forego any of the luxurious amenities found in stretch limos and stretch SUVs. Limo buses typically feature better amenities, such as wraparound leather seating, privacy partition, tinted windows, entertainment systems, fiber optic lighting and a full-length bar console.
1.3. Common events to hire a limousine or private chauffeur for
Limousine services in Singapore are more than just luxurious modes of transportation for large events and important people; they can also be hired for a variety of events because each vehicle serves a different purpose and can enhance the experience people have at your event, no matter what it is.
1. Weddings, Birthdays and other Parties
Limo service in Singapore can be hired for weddings, birthdays and other parties; this private chauffeur service is especially essential for many Singapore weddings, particularly Chinese weddings because the couple is expected to travel to multiple locations in a short period of time.
With a chauffeur service, you can now travel around sunny Singapore and go through your wedding day or party day with ease.
You can even hire Limo buses to transport all of your guests to and from your wedding or party and any after-party locations.
2. Corporate Events
Many businesses use corporate limousine services to quickly and efficiently transport all of their employees or important guests to a meeting or event venue. You will be provided with a designated chauffeur and comfortable transportation throughout the day, allowing you to focus on the day’s agenda rather than transportation needs.
3. Airport Services
Many companies arrange for corporate limousine services to receive and transport their overseas guests to and from the airport and hotel, and many individuals hire a chauffeur service in Singapore for comfortable and convenient transportation from the airport.
1.4. The cost of limousine and concierge services in Singapore
Concierge services in Singapore typically refer to personal or corporate errand services, where individuals or businesses in Singapore hire someone to assist them in running errands such as the delivery of items, passenger pick-ups and drop-offs, booking of transportation and many more.
While there are no fixed rates for concierge services in Singapore, different services provided by different companies will charge different fees. If you are traveling abroad and use the concierge services of the hotel where you are staying, the pricing may vary as well.
Some of the factors that can affect the cost of concierge services in Singapore include:
- Type of task
- Duration of task
- Frequency of tasks
The factors affecting the cost of limousine services in Singapore include:
- Distance to travel
- Duration of booking
- Type of vehicle booked
- Type of limousine service
1.5. Things to look out for when renting a MAXICAB® or limousine
Before you hire a MAXICAB® or limo service in Singapore, there are certain things you need to take note of and consider.
1. Cost of service & Insurance
Some companies may charge exorbitant rates for a single trip, which probably isn’t something you want to see. It is a good habit to compare prices in order to find a limousine service that is most worth it. Always do a thorough check on the services included and ensure that you’re not paying for services you don’t require.
Also, check with the company to see if they provide any sort of coverage for their employees and customers so that if something goes wrong, you won’t have to worry about forking out extra money.
2. Cleanliness and Comfort
Check out reviews and/or photos left by other customers or on the company’s website, and see how well maintained the vehicles are and if they are clean.
3. Chauffeur service and safety
As safety is of utmost importance, always make sure that the chauffeur has obtained the Private Hire Car Driver’s Vocational Licence (PDVL), and has held a valid Class 3/3A/3C/3CA driving licence for at least a continuous period of two years.
Take a look at the reviews to find out whether the chauffeurs are punctual and adhere to safe driving practices.
PART 2: BENEFITS OF RENTING A MAXICAB®
Renting a maxicab® in Singapore is simple and convenient, and it comes with numerous advantages. MAXICAB® can be hired for a variety of reasons; such as tours or simply transporting people from one location to another, but this service provides you with more than just convenience.
1. Spacious and Equipped Vehicles
MAXICAB® are designed to provide passengers with ample space as they travel from one location to another. Apart from efficiently transporting small to medium groups, it also provides excellent comfort throughout your journey, as well as modern amenities such as entertainment systems to keep you entertained.
2. Timely Service
MAXICAB® are widely available in Singapore; some companies may not provide immediate 24/7 transportation solutions, but if you book your trip in advance, you can be sure that the maxicab® will be ready when you need it.
3. Safe and Professional Service
Chauffeurs driving maxicab® have to meet certain criteria and go through training before they are allowed to go on jobs; hiring a maxicab® service will then ensure that you and your guests are well taken care of and safe driving practices are followed.
2.1. Comparing MAXICAB® with other private hire vehicles and ride-sharing apps
Singapore’s diverse transportation options have made getting from one location to another extremely convenient. When you book a maxicab® in Singapore or hail a taxi on the street, you are guaranteed a safe and comfortable ride around the island; these are the benefits of private hire and taxi services.
Choosing a private chauffeur service in Singapore, on the other hand, gives you the following advantages:
1. Comfort and Professionalism
Rather than using drivers’ personal vehicles, as in private hire, passengers will always be greeted with a clean and comfortable vehicle to travel in because the company has their own fleet of vehicles that are regularly maintained and cleaned to provide you with a sanitary and safe environment to travel in.
2.Accommodates more passengers
A typical taxi or private hire vehicle can only transport up to four passengers, and not only that, in order to fit four passengers in a standard sedan, three of the passengers have to squeeze into the rear seats, whereas a maxicab® can transport up to 7 passengers comfortably.
MAXICAB® have a fixed rate. Although the rates may vary depending on the service requested, it may still be cost-effective compared to taxis that run on a meter. You might even end up saving more money.
2.2. How To Safeguard Yourself When Booking A Limousine Service
While most businesses in Singapore follow ethical business practices, the same cannot be said for limousine service companies in other countries. Problems such as scams do occur, and if you do encounter one while travelling abroad, the consequences could be disastrous. Here are things you should be wary of when hiring a limousine service:
- Service and Expectations Gap
Limousine service operators may substitute your vehicle for a different one while still charging you the same price; the vehicle may be an older model or have a different seating configuration. To avoid this, request for an identification number and photos of the vehicle you’ve booked, as well as insist on including the vehicle’s identification number in your rental contract.
1. Unaccounted Extra Charges
Examine your rental contract thoroughly to ensure that items you do not require, such as food and beverages, are not included and charged. Also, ensure that you understand all of the charges that will be incurred if things don’t go according to plan and that these are specified clearly in your agreement so that you can always refer back and protect your interests.
2. Third-party booking platforms
Avoid booking through third-party platforms because they may take a large portion of the fee and then contract a chauffeur service without providing a service guarantee or delivering as promised.
You have a better chance of getting the best deal if you approach a service operator and hire directly from them. Direct communication makes negotiating much easier and can provide you with more security.
3. Attractive Promotions and Lack of Detailed Invoice
Sometimes when a deal sounds too good to be true, it is too good to be true.
A limousine service that is significantly less expensive than the others may provide you with a limousine that is several years old and poorly maintained. While looking for cheaper alternatives to save money is a good idea, you should be searching for a deal that is worthwhile rather than risking paying less but receiving poor service, or maybe none at all.
2.3. Things To Do When Selecting The Right Private Chauffeur Service
Choosing a chauffeur service in Singapore is more than just selecting a company that provides the service you require. It may be a short service duration, with few stakeholders involved, but the right chauffeur service can make a significant difference. Here are some tips:
1. Ask questions
Ask the service provider detailed questions about their service; What is their customer service philosophy? Do their employees receive training? What are some of the services they offer that set them apart from their competitors? For example, the use of digital technology and up-to-date systems.
2. Verify company’s credentials
Check their website to see if their drivers have valid driver’s licences, as well as other important credentials and accreditations from local authorities. Also, learn how they recruit their drivers, what the requirements are, and how they train their service employees.
3. Read online reviews
Check out their customer testimonials on Google My Business, Yelp, Facebook, and other platforms, and carefully read their reviews, both positive and negative, as this can give you an idea of what they do well and what they don’t, giving you a good idea of what to expect and allowing you to weigh your options.
Conduct extensive research and gather information on the price of the company’s services, the fleet of vehicles, and the services they provide, and ensure that they can meet your budget and needs.
The comfort levels of a vehicle can vary from vehicle to vehicle, so it’s important to check on the specifications and comfort level of the vehicle you’re going to use; if a company doesn’t offer comfortable vehicles, then they are not focused on service quality.
Some limousine companies also provide concierge or errand services in Singapore. While some people think that a concierge service is only provided by the front desk of a hotel or an airport, concierge services include more than that.
There are different branches of concierge services; medical concierge services, personal concierge services, airport concierge services, and more.
Personal concierge services can save you a lot of time by having someone run errands for you or do simple tasks for you that you may not have time to do; they act as a lifestyle manager, similar to a secretary or personal assistant.
In hotels or resorts, a concierge assists guests in performing various tasks such as making restaurant reservations, arranging and coordinating various services, assisting with travel arrangements and more. Personal concierge services offered by limousine companies, on the other hand, provide services such as point to point deliveries and passenger pick-ups and drop-offs.
These services provide an added convenience to many businesses and individuals, allowing you to manage all of your tasks professionally, accommodate your needs, and relieve stress by offloading all minor tasks to someone else, allowing you to focus on other things.
MAXICABS.SG is a professional limousine company in Singapore, offering affordable chauffeur services as well as concierge services. Aside from being dedicated to meeting the needs of every client, MAXICABS.SG also offers hassle-free payment methods whilst allowing you to book a maxicab® in Singapore in just 60 seconds.
Resolve all your transportation needs with MAXICABS.SG today.