Monthly Archives: September 2012

Can Non-Emergency Luxury transportation turn patients into advocates?

The Challenge for Surgery Centers

What is the most challenging part of any elective procedure?  Is it the procedure itself? Is it the recovery process?  Doctors and patients all agree that the transportation is the most challenging.  The logistics of transporting a high end client who may have multiple medical conditions may often prove a challenge.  Add to this a patient who is under the influence of Post-operative medication and this creates a unique logistical situation for many surgery centers.  Not to mention the strain on friends and family when they need to drive a patient around. Patients, Staff and family need a particularly high level of transportation service that can provide comfort, safety and peace of mind.

What would such a service be worth to you if you knew that it could ensure referrals and repeat clients?

What is Non-Emergency Luxury transportation?

Non-Emergency Luxury transportation companies are traditionally chauffeur driven  services that have seasoned and certified EMTs behind the wheel and all major medical equipment on board. They are very different from traditional “wheelchair” vans driven by someone who may not possess the medical knowledge or equipment for a high stakes transport. The vehicle most often used is the Lincoln Executive Town Car.  Many of these luxury ground transportation vehicles come fully equipped with Medical Grade Oxygen and a fully stocked trauma kit.  Transportation of patients include those coming out of elective procedures, plastic surgery, pain management, Dr. appointments, even retirement communities.

Why use Non-Emergency Luxury transportation ?

One simple reason, peace of mind for the patient, family and the facility.  Many patients may be under the influence of anything from sedatives to anti-naseau medication.  Other patients may have multiple medical conditions that require some level of medical supervision.  Even more yet are simply unwilling or unable to drive themselves.  The EMTs behind the wheel of these luxury vehicles can perform anything from patient assessments to monitoring of vital signs.   Most companies should have medical provider insurance and by Los Angeles county Department of Health standards are able to assume risk of medical liability.

Turning your patients into advocates for your practice

Empirical evidence exists that surgery centers that offer a higher level of care can increase the value of their practice to the patient.  As a  direct result of rolling Non Emergency Luxury transportation into an existing “concierge level” of services, many Los Angeles  surgery centers have  converted  high numbers of consultations into repeat clients and referrals. When offering Non-Emergency Luxury transportation you are transporting the most precious asset you have-your patient.  These specialized services offer more than just peace of mind.  Surgery center RNs and facility administrators were  polled and a unanimous conclusion was reached; having a competent, medical professional behind the wheel has made their job easier and put both patients and family at ease.

Service Starts once the procedure ends 

The majority of post-surgical complications can range from minor swelling to  localized pain. However major complications have been noted in 3%to16% of many elective procedures.  Many of these post-operative complications occur immediately to within 3 days of surgery.  With the incidence of medical malpractice lawsuit on the rise, why take a chance with your patient’s recovery.  Countless Los Angeles surgery centers are starting to view professional Non-Emergency Luxury transportation as a valuable asset to their quality of care.

A Los Angeles Chauffeurs Guide to Carmageddon 2012

“Last year, we proved that Angelenos could rise to the occasion and cooperate to turn Carmageddon into ‘Carmaheavan’ It was truly one of L.A.’s finest moments.”- L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa

Carmageddon 2012

It’s that time again!  Carmageddon II is right around the corner.  About this time last year Carmageddon 2011 ended up being something akin to the ‘Rapture’  – magically turning the streets of L.A. into a big empty.  Will Mayor Villaraigosa’s  sentiment hold true this time around ?  Or, will many motorists become complacent about the second and final coming of freeway closures, beginning at 7 pm. Saturday, Sept. 28th and ending at 5 am. October 1st

What are they doing?!

The 405 freeway is one of the busiest freeways in North America with about 250, 000 vehicles traveling every weekend.  Caltrans crews plan on closing down a 10-mile section of the 405 freeway on the Westside of LA, between the 10 and the 101.   Consequently, alternate routes around the Freeway are likely to be jammed. There is much work to be done this time around.   There are two columns that need to be demolished and replaced, almost twice as much work in the same amount of time.  Officials are concerned that since Carmageddon 2011 turned out to be a fluke for many, there will be less concern this time around-turning the streets into gridlock chaos.

Areas To Avoid

Canyon roads will be congested from Malibu to Hollywood, as will the surface streets that feed into them.  Bruce Gillman of the city’s Department of Transportation suggested that those who choose to drive stick to detour posted freeways .  “If people want to go out and drive, they could be putting themselves into a very frustrating situation,” Gilman said

Other likely trouble spots include Beverly Glen Boulevard, Benedict Canyon Drive, Coldwater Canyon Drive, Laurel Canyon Boulevard and Cahuenga Boulevard. In West Los Angeles, surface streets around junction of the 405 and the 10 freeways also could be jammed.  Officials are advising to stay as far away from  the 405 as possible.

Solutions

As corporate transportation specialists with over 20 years of experience with Los Angeles traffic,  we advise to avoid driving at all this time around.  If within the city of Los Angeles is unavoidable, do NOT attempt to drive on your own.  Many motorists have opted instead to hire a professional chauffeur driven service.  Top tier Limo companys have the latest cutting edge technology in street traffic updates and routing.  A few maintain a staff of professionally screened chauffeurs, many hail from the emergency service sector.  Don’t be hesitant to call upon these companies to inquire about service protocol and rates during the weekend of Carmageddon 2012

Resources

Additional information on the closure and alternative routes can be found:
http://www.metro.net/405.

Traffic condition updates are available at:
http://go511.com.

L.A. City DOT Automated Traffic Surveillance and Control (ATSAC) system at:
www.trafficinfo.lacity.org/index.html.

For traffic on streets in and around LAX:
http://trafficinfo.lacity.org/html/lax.html 

Caltrans provides current traffic status on California highways and state roads at:
www.dot.ca.gov/cgi-bin/roads.cgi 

Twitter
Several organizations will post Tweets with up-to-the-minute conditions
Metro tweets can be found by signing up :@I-405.

For Tweets on airport and traffic conditions in an around LAX,  find LAX’s Twitter account at: www.Twitter.com/LAX_Official

A&E Worldwide Limousine is a private for-Hire Chauffeured Service based in Los Angeles. They provide a boutique level of luxury transportation services in over 350 cities worldwide. For a complete list of services and rates visit them online at aeworldwidelimo.com or contact info@aeworldwidelimo.com For faster service call the Los Angeles office directly at 818-324-0607.

special thanks to: Latimes.com, @LAWeeklyNews, Zazzle.com

An Insiders Guide to 5 Star Chauffeured Service

Excellent Chauffeured Service

chauffeured serviceIn the luxury transportation industry, the term “5 star” service is thrown around, coveted and often misunderstood. 5 star service can mean many things to many people. Let’s take a look at what it means to achieve a 5 star rating and how to spot a 5 star limo service.

5 star ratings defined

Below is an easy breakdown of what emotions and impressions are most often associated with each star rating.  Please keep in mind that customer service is an art, not a science.  Also notice that the longest column belongs to the 1 star rating; what does this say about how strongly customers feel when given poor service?

5 – Amazed, out of the ordinary, “blown away” etc.

4 – Very content, above average, “Went above and beyond”, etc.

3 – Content, Fair, “The Usual”, Pleased,  etc.

2 – Dissatisfied, forgettable, below average, Poor, etc.

1 – Extremely unsatisfied, unpleasant , terrible, attrocious, Bad, “The worst!”  Etc.

The Devil is in the details

Throwing in a little something extra is one sure way to cinch a lasting positive impression. The proverbial “cherry on top” is what 7 out of 10 limousine customers remembered the most. For the limo company that shines, this could be offering a few extra amenities in the field or the office staff taking the time to go over any charges on the bill. The company that pays attention to the little details and takes extra special care of its customers is the one that often leaves a lasting impression.

Common Courtesy

Being polite and helpful can speak volumes about the level of service provided. “Please” and “thank you” leave a subtle impression with customers.  Most 5 star limo services show up 15 minutes early to the pickup, as a courtesy to the client.  Also, notice if the chauffeur asks if there is anything else the customer needs that day.

The Follow-up

A limo service that picks up the phone every time is off to a good start! The company that sends timely confirmations and invoices, or checks in after the job is done stands out amongst the rest. A follow-up correspondence with some kind of personal touch could even offer the customer a chance to write a glowing review about their ground transportation experience.

Listening to the Customer

Below are some key points that customers who gave 5 star ratings remembered most about the service.

1) Treats me as a human being, and not just as a number (reservations)

2) Anticipates my needs and has them available for me.

3) Often surprises me with an upgrade-without me asking for it.

3) Fixes problems without any fuss -even though I may be at fault.

4) Remembers me once I have stated my preferences – without asking me for this information all the time.

5) Provides what was promised. 

The Bottom Line

Only at or near 5 stars did customers become loyal and even advocates … impacting the bottom line by 25% to 90%. Referrals, repeat customers, and an increase of sales from the same customers grew exponentially with 5-star limousine services.

What are some memorable 5 star experiences that you have had?

 

A&E Worldwide Limousine is a private for-Hire Chauffeured Service based in Los Angeles.  They provide a boutique level of luxury transportation services in over 350 cities worldwide.   For a complete list of services and rates visit them online at aeworldwidelimo.com or contact info@aeworldwidelimo.com For faster service call the Los Angeles office directly at 818-324-0607.

Special thanks to :
Becky Carrol Customerstock.net
Kevin Bacablog.customerlobby.com

How to Choose the Right Chauffeured Service in Los Angeles

Chauffeured Service Guide

los angeles chauffeured serviceSome call it a Limo service while others may use the term “executive transportation company.”  The abundance of names and density of companies can often make it challenging for the consumer looking to choose the right chauffeured service.  Whether you’re looking for a car service to the airport or a hummer limo for a night out on the town, there are some benchmarks that can easily help the consumer find the chauffeured service that is a perfect fit for their needs.

Insurance and Licensing

When booking with a Los Angeles limo service or any ground transportation provider worldwide, check to see if they are licensed and insured.  Make sure that the company you rent a limo with is licensed by the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and carries a valid Transfer Charty Party (TCP) number.  Whether booking an executive limo or a simple airport transfer find out if the company you use is licensed and bonded with a legitimate Commercial Insurance company.  Most legitimate companies carry minimum liability coverage of 1 Million Dollars. A company that cares enough to license and insure properly is often a safer choice.

Vehicle Maintenance and Age

 What often separates a lower grade black car service from a reputable chauffeured car service is the condition of their vehicles.   No vehicle in the fleet should be more than 5 years old and the mileage on any sedan or limo should be below 220,000 miles. When you do choose a car service, make sure to check inside and outside the vehicle for any signs that it is not being properly maintained.   How they take care of a car is how they eventually handle their clients. Don’t be afraid to ask for a California MVMR (Motor Vehicle Maintenance Report), which will clearly show why and when the last time the vehicle was serviced.

Chauffeurs

So many companies promise chauffeurs that handle luggage, open doors and provide a white glove door to door luxury ground transportation experience.  But how do you know if you will get what is promised?  

Ask which service sector the majority of their chauffeurs come from.  Some of the most highly requested chauffeurs come from the service/hospitality sector, while others come from the emergency service sector.

Make sure that chauffeurs are fully licensed and insured.  The limo service you choose should show proof that all chauffeurs have been background checked by a Department of Justice certified agency.  Any safe and secure ground transportation provider should have a certified pre-employment and random drug testing process.  Most professional car service chauffeurs come with some experience.  However, ask how long the Limousine service training period is and whether chauffeurs are asked to sign a legally binding client privacy and confidentiality agreement. Chauffeurs are like mobile concierges – they do more than just open doors for passengers and drive – they are able to demonstrate a mastery of high end customer service skills, they are prompt, great communicators and know Los Angeles like the back of their hands.

Service Hours and Availability

The office that manages the chauffeured service should be available any time day or night.  Make sure the company has a 24/7 Dispatch Center and that your call will always be answered by a live COMPETENT human being.  Reservation confirmations should be sent same day with all routing details and pricing clearly displayed.  The central dispatch office should ideally have two way communication with chauffeurs which is often more reliable than just cell phone communication.

Follow Through

Also pay attention to see if the company follows through with you – before and after the reservation is made.   During the reservation process ask as many questions as possible about their fleet and pricing; be it about Luxury Sedans, SUVs, Hybrids or classic Stretch Limousines.  They should be able to answer service and pricing questions immediately and without hesitation. For Airport car service, ask what kind of technology they use to monitor street traffic and flight times. The manner and tone of the reservationist will immediately cue you in to the professionalism of the Limousine service.

Choosing The Chauffeured Service that best suits your needs can make the difference between a Luxurious ground transportation experience and a logistical nightmare.  The guidelines above are by no means exhaustive.  However, armed with the tools of an educated consumer can make planning your trip more manageable and produce results that will leave a lasting impression on you and your guests.

A&E Worldwide Limousine is a private for-Hire Chauffeured Service based in Los Angeles.  They provide a boutique level of luxury transportation services in over 350 cities worldwide.   For a complete list of services and rates visit them online at aeworldwidelimo.com or contact info@aeworldwidelimo.com For faster service call the Los Angeles office directly at 818-324-0607.

Choosing a Los Angeles Executive Limousine Service

Los Angeles Executive Transportation

In Los Angeles executive transportation companies that claim to deliver with superior service are a dime a dozen. Any sedan service can say they’re committed to a reliable, exceptional experience, but how do consumers really know what type of service they will receive. If you’re looking to choose a company to do business with, performing an on-site visit or watching them on the job can be among the best indicators of their commitment in action. Here are our tips for identifying a los angeles executive limousine service you can trust:

Your executive travel isn’t just going to take place between the hours of 8am and 5pm on weekdays. A great way to start interviews with executive transportation providers is to ask whether they offer customer support 24/7. Too often, limo companies use call centers or untrained answering services to answer the phones after hours. The customer service representatives lack the training, expertise and clout to resolve big issues. Look for an established organization that offers their own employees to handle any questions or issues that arise outside business hours.

Stop by for a Personal Visit

Taking a trip to visit the facility in person can be an immediate indicator of whether they’ve been honest about their fleet, staff and level of professionalism. Take the time to talk with customer service representatives, dispatchers, mechanics, management and the Chauffeurs. Do the Chauffeurs dress well and present themselves as competent professionals? If you’re worried that about the quality of cars and staff, checking out their service in person is a great way to see whether they’re worth your business.

Watch the Company in Action

If you’re still feeling hesitant, perform an undercover visit to an airport and watch how the staff present themselves while greeting clients. Do their uniforms look as good as they do on the website? Are the vehicles clean from the exterior, and are the Chauffeurs offering a professional greeting? Do they offer to help clients with loading their luggage? The single best indicator of your actual experience can come from watching the employees in action.

A key indicator to watch for is how the chauffeurs act when they are waiting for their client. Are they watching the flight board and holding a professionally printed Greet Sign or are they outside smoking and talking on their cell phone? A professional chauffeur is always “on” and should be representing the company accordingly.

Insurance Coverage

Insurance coverage is a crucial differentiator among exceptional providers. A reputable company won’t hesitate to offer details about coverage or a copy of their insurance certificate. They’ll know exactly how your company will be covered in the event of the unknown (ask to be named as an Additional Insured), and they’ll have the expertise to discuss any questions and concerns about coverage. If the company doesn’t want to share much more than the fact they are covered or becomes quiet when you inquire about their level of coverage, it may be a good sign to start looking elsewhere.

Ask for References

Client references are a strong indicator of how well they maintain relationships with other corporate clients. If they’ve been in business for a while, at least one executive travel customer should be willing to vouch for their service. Take your references research a step further and see how they’re rated with the Better Business Bureau or if they have reviews on Yelp. Look at their Facebook and Twitter feeds and see what other clients have to say about their experience. While it’s important to keep in mind that many clients are more likely to share negative experiences than positive, a company that has a commitment to going above and beyond should receive some positive feedback and have no problem coming up with glowing references.