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Setting a driver standard for your corporate Car service, Limousine service, Van service and Corporate transportation service.

Setting a driver standard for your corporate Car service, Limousine service, Van service and Corporate transportation service.

I’ll know the applicant when I see him!
Statements like this were fine just 50 years ago, but the process of hiring his changed more than a little. You must ensure that you get what you want, and only what you want, and only when you hire new employees.

The job description is essential for each and every position in your company.  It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but it should list the essential duties of the job. An essential duty is a job task that cannot be shared, given to someone else to do, or eliminated from the work. For example, a professional limousine chauffeur must ” get out of the car and opened the passenger door” or “carry client baggage up to 500 feet”. These essential duties and others should be listed in your driver job description.

Prior to hiring, job qualifications must be established. Obviously, the standard you set for your chauffeurs must relate to the chauffeurs job, as the standards will be the basis on which you eliminate poor chauffeur applicants so they must be fair and relate to the work. Avoid the irrelevant conditions as they are inappropriate at probably illegal.

Standards should itemize tasks that the driver must do. If you require a driver to lift and carry heavy baggage, you might set the standard such as must be able to lift carry load and unload a 75 pound suitcase without injury five or more times a day or shift. It might be helpful to state how far the driver is required to carry the bag.

It is also important that you establish safety standards. These might include the elimination of drivers under a certain age, as data show that younger drivers are more often involved in accidents: elimination of careless drivers, those with multiple violations under the driving record: and elimination of drivers with alcohol or drug related motor vehicle violations, as such drivers have demonstrated their inability to recognize risky driving behaviors.

Setting standards before you hire makes it easier for you to more fairly select candidates for employment. By measuring applicants against a predetermined standard, you eliminate bias and sure that the people you do hire will truly be the best available to you.

Uber and Lyft face Scrutiny

By Susan Rose:

Last year when we published our first article on Uber, the media (outside our industry) was almost unanimously positive about the smartphone app.  Back then I said it was going to take a person or people getting hurt—or worse, killed—to really thrust Uber into the regulators’ crosshairs. Sadly, it did happen, and now Uber is currently facing some serious questions.

My prediction came true simply because of the laws of nature. After all, why are taxis and limousines so heavily regulated in the first place? It’s for the same reason that California will require a fifth door on a limousine—passenger safety was called into question. Fight it, and you run the risk of excoriation from a safety-sensitive public. Uber is starting to feel some of that pressure for the first time.

It’s probably become part of your conversation as well. Just to be clear, Uber offers several levels of service: Black, SUV, UberX, and Taxi. Black and SUV are meant to act like upscale taxi services, but are the two that compete most directly with our industry. Uber Taxi and UberX, its lower-cost ridesharing service, are in far fewer cities than the first two, but drivers use their personal vehicles and are less regulated than any of the apps. Other companies like Lyft and Sidecar compete for rideshares as well.

It’s important to note that while Uber may be in the spotlight due to the New Year’s Eve pedestrian death, the majority of the regulators have shifted their attention away from services like Uber Black to ridesharing apps like UberX, Lyft, and Sidecar. While our industry hasn’t let up on the fight, it’s clear that the focus has been redirected to the more contentious, less insured, and woefully unregulated rideshares.

Where Are We Now?

Trevor Johnson, director of The San Francisco Cab Drivers Association probably said it best in The New York Times: “Uber may be the next Amazon, but Amazon doesn’t have the same potential capability to leave a trail of bodies in the street.” Johnson is, of course, referring to the death of 6-year-old Sofia Liu who was hit in a San Francisco crosswalk by Uber “freelancer” Syed Muzaffar on New Year’s Eve. The driver was promptly removed from active service with Uber and the company distanced itself immediately from the case. The problem is, the California Public Utilities Commission created a new category for these apps called “transportation network companies” or TNCs. Uber and others were required to comply within 45 days of the September ruling, which included $1 million insurance policies on drivers, background checks with fingerprinting, and thorough vehicle inspections. Uber is fighting the classification and has vowed to fight any responsibility in the wrongful death lawsuit as well. Sadly, after Liu’s death (and injuries to some family members), it was reported that Muzaffar had a record of reckless driving in Florida. It later was revealed that Uber was lax on conducting background checks, especially through the tougher Live Scan fingerprint checks that are also run through FBI databases for a more thorough and up-to-date record. In January, Uber extended its background check nationwide.

cd-0314-uber-rideshare-lyft-apps-article See a full list of international cities and the latest information here: chauffeurdriven.com/apps
Matthew Daus, president of the International Association of Transportation Regulators (IATR) and former head of the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission, has some theories about where things are heading with Uber. With Google as one of its biggest investors (through Google Ventures), Daus says that it’s all about collecting data, which the massive search engine/all-around technology giant craves. “Google wants the data, while Uber wants to sneak in and deregulate the industry so that it can get its [initial public offering]. Once that happens, they’ll turn around and say, ‘Of course we need regulation.’ That will lead to increased prices.” That would mean driving some out of the industry altogether while possibly devaluing the pricey taxi medallions. (Others speculate that the Uber-Google relationship will lead to a platform for autonomous vehicles, which Google is investing in.)
That IPO could mean big—and I do mean BIG—paper. If you live in or around Silicon Valley, you already know that Uber is the hottest thing going. The investors just keep piling on, so there are high hopes for the company’s upward trajectory. Uber’s most current valuation is $3.5 billion (yes, with a “b”), but there are many who feel that is highly undervalued. Some estimates say Uber could be $100 billion within 5 years. An IPO would keep the cash following.

Big money and flashy, one-percenter names attached to Uber could have bigger consequences than just an endless pool of marketing dollars and expensive lobbyists. This means that regulators and politicians could be having a harder time standing up to the app. When your position relies on donors who have deep pockets, combined with an intense public love for the service, it becomes very difficult to say no. The taxi industry isn’t immune to this type of politicking, but there’s a new game in town and there’s more money than ever at stake. And for the record, we are not suggesting nefarious backroom deals are taking place (like Uber does in the next paragraph), but we’re also not stupid. Money and politics are the oldest friends in the world.

Uber has clearly joined the “if you can’t beat them, join them” club. For example, Uber’s Corey Owens blogged about his experience in Portland last summer in a post called “On Consumers, Competition & Collusion.” The blog read: [L]ast week I testified before the Portland Private-for-Hire Transportation Board of Review, which regulates taxis and limousines in the Rose City. I was asking this official government body to do away with rules that force sedans to wait 60 minutes before picking up the requesting passenger, that explicitly prohibit the use of cost-effective vehicles, and that artificially inflate prices for sedan transportation. I was requesting these changes of a regulatory body made up of taxi companies and their allies. The marriage between government and industry in Portland is hardly the only example. In Dallas, Yellow Taxi’s lawyer worked with city officials to organize a fruitless sting against Uber. In Colorado, Public Utilities Commission staff proposed anti-Uber regulations after a local taxi lobbyist wrote to them pleading for ‘rules changes’ to address the Uber ‘issue.’ In Missouri, the chairman of the Metropolitan St. Louis Taxicab Commission is a lobbyist who walks the halls of state government on behalf of the Commission, which is primarily made up of—you guessed it—taxi companies. This is regulation by the taxi industry for the taxi industry. Consumers’ interests are getting bulldozed by lobbyists, campaign contributions, and cronyism run amok.”

read the entire article at Chauffeur Driven:

Shop till you drop, without all the hassle? Call a Professional Chauffeur Service!

Orlando is home to some of the most upscale shopping venues in Florida. With low sales tax and over 2 outlet malls you are going to need some way and someone to help you hit them all inside of a small window of time if you are on vacation in the central florida area. Here are Orlando’s major malls and a little about them with links to their websites:

The Mall at Millenia: Upscale shops as well as traditional mall shops that takes the best fashion labels and some of the most unique dining experiences to the next level. Theres even an ikea right next door with the largest show floor in the state. Home to only Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom stores in Orlando. A MUST SEE!    

The Florida Mall Florida Mall is one of the largest malls in the state, anchored by Macys, Dillards, JC Penney, Sears with a large selection of specialty stores. always a deal to pick up in this paradise for the shopaholic! From shoes to a custom name belt buckle that blinks, you will find something for you or for those at home. (Minus the usual T-shirt)

Festival Bay Mall at International Drive– Not the best choice for shopping but if glow in the dark golf and a movie is what you are looking for then this mall comes with the perfect companion: Fuddruckers! The theater at this mall is never crowded and the likelihood is that you will find the perfect seat.

Orlando Premium Outlets  1:Vineland Avenue bottom end of International Drive, keep going past Sea World. This is an outlet mall where huge discounts can be had! It has many unusual and exclusive outlets, including the only Baccarat/ Lalique outlet in the world. My Personal Favorite: FCUK ( French Connection UK)

Orlando Premium Outlets 2: The mall that was formerly the Belz Mall at the Northern end of International Drive is now another Orlando Premium Outlets. Another huge outlet mall that has recently been renovated and expanded. This mall has some great stores too and outdoor entertainment! The Movado outlet has Ebel, Lacoste and Juicy Couture watches at amazing prices. At Nautica, the staff is trained to help you “style” your look… best thing is that right next door you have FESTIVAL BAY MALL!

Lake Buena Vista Factory Outlet Stores www.lbvfs.com Another outlet mall. This is the home of the great Vanity Fair outlet, source of many well- known brands including Lee and Jansport among others. It is far less crowded than the other malls, so head there if you don’t like crowds.

Pointe Orlando on International Drive  Shopping, dining and entertainment. This mall is right in the middle of the action and international drive. It showcases the citys largest Imax Screen. (4 stories tall) dinner won’t be a problem at this hub of activity. From the world famous wings at Hooters to Taverna Opa where you can really party like a greek, you have it all! Even an upside down building known as wonder works.   

Orlando Fashion Square Mall (Mostly Locals/Near Downtown) local fashions and great prices.

 

Do not forget to allow for sales tax in addition to the price on the ticket. (6%) Some malls will allow you to sign up for even greater savings, e.g if you register with the Premium Outlets website you can easily print off a coupon which when presented at the Information Desk in the Food Court, will entitle you to a book of coupons allowing even more savings!

Many of the tourist maps and booklets also feature such vouchers. you can find theses at any of the malls customer services desk.

In Macy’s, foreign visitors will be able to register for a 11% discount card, just go to customer services with id such as a passport or driver’s licence.

Make sure you bring a credit card and a couple of empty suitcases to load in the car. My advice is to use a reputable Chauffeur service. Order a sedan from http://i4limoservice.com/  to take you around from place to place. You won’t want to drive and you will want to save your energy. besides, who better to take you around then a local!

Police Not responding to Motor Vehicle Accidents- New Trend

Start Of A Trend?

New York City, and Las Vegas have become the latest city to determine that, unless there are injuries or fatalities involved, its police department will not respond to the scene of a vehicular accident. So, there won’t be any police investigations or written reports on property-damage-only accidents. As of March 3, 2014 in Las Vegas, it became the responsibility of those involved in the collision to make sure that identification and insurance information is exchanged and that the incident is reported to the authorities. The decision follows other cities that have enacted similar policies, including San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego, and it could start trending across the country.

Police Priorities The overriding reason for this change of policy is that the police claim they don’t have the time to deal with these incidents any longer. Police estimate that every week, they spend 55% of their time – 250 hours – on these “fender-benders” and they have many more pressing matters to deal with. One issue they are addressing is the case in which one of the parties involved refuses to exchange information or if one party leaves the scene of the accident. In the first instance, the police can be called to respond, and, in the second, leaving the scene constitutes a “hit-and-run” accident which the police will continue to cover in person. They will also continue to respond to instances of drunk driving. Those opposed to the new rule are concerned that it makes it more difficult for motorists to determine and agree on who’s at fault, what needs to be reported to what agencies and how to properly determine insurance issues. The Nevada Insurance Council already called the move a “poorly executed plan” that could lead to safety problems and higher insurance costs.

Fear of Fraud Any crash, especially one in which police are not on scene, can also open the door to fraud, because it’s one person’s word against the other. This is why it is of the utmost importance to document the scene carefully and as soon as possible. Take photos, including close-ups of all damaged areas of each vehicle, and of the general scene from all angles. Get witness information from anyone who may have been at the scene, including your passengers, and document the number of occupants who might have been in any other involved vehicles. As soon as you can, call your insurance company to report the incident and what you have done to document the scene. It makes sense to perform all these steps whether you’re in a location where police respond or not. Las Vegas has published a list of Frequently Asked Questions for Property Damage Only Traffic Accidents, which gives some precise information on what is expected to accurately document a scene. And, even if you are nowhere near Las Vegas, there are areas of the country that have implemented this same policy, and many more are likely to follow as police budgets continue to tighten.