Arrive in style for your wedding ceremony by riding in a limo. When you rent a wedding limo, you get to turn the stress of driving over to a professional and look fabulous while doing it. Choose anything from a traditional white limo to a 20-person stretch Hummer to a Rolls-Royce Phantom. Limousine rental services transport you and your beloved in luxury or high-end, high-capacity vehicles for your wedding (or other special events). Hire a wedding limo to drive you and your beloved from the ceremony and wedding reception site, then see you safely home. Wedding limo services are also available to provide transportation for members of your wedding party as well as other friends, relatives and VIP guests.
When you have a professional chauffeur deal with the driving on your wedding day, you can relax and enjoy your glass of bubbly. The luxury ride provides the perfect transition from getting ready to arriving at your ceremony. The extra space in a wedding limo can help keep your wedding finery from getting wrinkled, which is especially helpful if you are wearing a wedding gown with a long train. The wedding couple can ride together, or the two halves of the wedding party can ride separately and save the "first look" for the ceremony itself. After the ceremony is over, the newlyweds can have some precious moments alone together in the wedding limo before the excitement of the reception.
Traditional limo rental services charge by the hour or per trip. Limo rental services usually average between $125 and $460, depending on the car the client selects, the length of the rental, the day of the week and the season. Some companies use their standard hourly rate for all their services, while other companies charge separate rates for wedding limo rentals. Special wedding limo rentals are often provided as packages, and may cost more in total than you would pay for the company's standard hourly rate, but include add-ons such as champagne and a driver in formal wear. Be sure to clarify how your limo rental company charges and whether there is separate pricing for wedding limo rentals. Hourly costs usually start accruing from the time the limo driver leaves the company's home garage until the time it returns to that garage, while packages last a predetermined number of hours; clients are charged overage fees for time beyond those hours. Although renting a wedding limo is another wedding expense, the benefits include a safe ride, beautiful photo opportunities, the chance to arrive in style, wrinkle-free wedding dresses, and a special moment to share with friends and family. If you're ready to ride in style, here are the cost factors for renting a wedding limo.
It's common for limo services to charge a minimum number of hours. For weddings, many companies offer packages that include a certain number of hours with the vehicle and driver at the customers' disposal plus a variety of extras, such as champagne and beverage service, special decorations on the limo, red-carpet rollout and so on. It's also common for limo services to offer party bus packages or shuttle service for wedding guests.
Shuttle buses are a good option if you your wedding or reception is at an urban location or unusual venue with limited parking. Providing group transportation lets you get guests to your ceremony safely and on time while adding a festive vibe. European Class Limousine in Minooka, Illinois, charges an average $45 per trip and $39 per hour for shuttle bus services. Rates are determined by the type of vehicle, the number of hours it's needed and other factors. European Class Limousine prefers to work with wedding customers individually to create a custom rental package rather than charging set prices. Often you can get discounts on shuttle bus services when you book your wedding limo through the same provider. Some couples even opt to arrive at the wedding ceremony and the reception in the limo, then ride home with all their friends on the shuttle bus.
Specialty vehicles, such as stretch SUVs and Hummers, restored luxury cars, and specially equipped party buses or shuttles, usually cost more per rental hour than traditional stretch limousines. Packages for these types of vehicles also tend to be higher than for a standard limousine or luxury sedan due to the higher cost of purchasing and maintaining the vehicle. As a general rule of thumb, the larger the vehicle, the more it will cost per hour to rent. Optimum Limousine charges an average of $90 per hour on Saturdays for a 10-passenger Lincoln Town Car stretch and $115 per hour for a 10-passenger Chrysler 300 stretch limo. In contrast, the company's smaller vehicles cost $60-$85 per hour for Saturday rentals. WSI Limousine charges an average of $125 per hour for a 10-passenger limo and $200 per hour for a 20-passenger limo. For wedding packages, WSI Limousine LLC has tiered pricing by car type. Their SUV wedding rental is an average of $500, the 10-person limo rental is $750, and the shuttle bus wedding service is $1,200.
Car rental companies that cater to weddings may also have in their fleet a restored classic car such as a Rolls-Royce or Bentley or a late-model luxury vehicle, which couples can use to make a spectacular grand entrance and stage memorable photos. High-end luxury cars like a Rolls-Royce Phantom, which sells for approximately $400,000 new, could have a starting rental price of $1,200 for a three-hour wedding package. Classic Coach Limousine, which has been in business for 30 years, offers a restored Rolls Royce for weddings and other special occasions.
Many limo services cover a specific geographic area. If a wedding is outside that area, customers will pay a surcharge.
Many luxury car rental companies cater to wedding couples by creating wedding packages that cover a set number of hours, include a chauffeur wearing a black suit or a tuxedo, and provide a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine. Add-on services could include additional bottles of champagne or other adult beverages, red-carpet rollout, and more, generally for an extra cost. Wedding limo rental packages from A1 Roma Limousine include champagne in the limo, red-carpet rollout and "just married" decorations on the outside of the car. Average wedding package prices for an 11-passenger stretch limo are as follows:
- $399 for 3 hours
- $450 for 4 hours
- $525 for 5 hours
- $100 per hour after 5 hours
Some services charge customers for road and bridge tolls, additional or unscheduled stops, wait time, parking, driver gratuity, cleaning and applicable taxes. Be sure you understand exactly what is included in a quoted price.
Renting your wedding limo
To make sure everything is perfect on your wedding day, do your homework when hiring a wedding limo company.
- Verify your exact vehicle: A1 Roma Limousine's Nicola Carbone and John Pride of The Limo Guy both recommend that you ask to see the limo that will be sent to transport you on your wedding day to ensure that it meets your standards and is worth the quoted rental rate.
- Make sure the company is legit: All limousine drivers are required to have a valid driver's license for that class of vehicle. Many states require services to have valid business licenses and ensure that all vehicles in their fleet pass safety and maintenance inspections. Check with any prospective limo service company to make sure its licenses, inspections and insurance are up to date.
- Read customer reviews: When researching your wedding limo rental company, find one that has stellar customer service reviews. On your wedding day, you deserve to have a kind driver, a gorgeous vehicle, a safe ride and a good experience.
- Sign a contract: Get the details of your wedding limo rental in writing and have both parties sign off on it. Specify cost, hours of rental, exact vehicle, any add-on services, and pickup and drop-off locations.
- Pay a deposit: Peak summer weekend dates can book up fast. Be sure to secure your limo for your wedding date by signing a contract and paying a deposit that averages 20 percent to 50 percent, depending on the company. Wedding limo deposits are usually non-refundable.
To get your money's worth, talk to the wedding limo rental company directly to negotiate package details and overall price. Many services are willing to negotiate and meet or beat competitors' prices. If you haven't yet scheduled your wedding date, you can get better rates from wedding limo rental and other vendors by asking about their slower dates and discounts they offer for the off-season or slower days of the week. For example, wedding limo rental companies typically have lower rates on Fridays and Sundays than they do on Saturdays, when there is more demand.
Don't forget to tip your limo driver; a tip is standard practice if you had a good experience. Your chauffeur is usually an employee or contract worker for the luxury car rental company. The driver is usually responsible for preparing your wedding limo, stocking the bar with drinks and ice, and cleaning up the vehicle afterward. If you had a safe and enjoyable ride and the driver went out of their way to make your wedding day even more special, consider tipping them 15 percent to 20 percent of the total limo rental cost. Some companies include driver gratuity as a line item in the bill, while others leave the tip up to the customer discretion. Always ask the rental company how they handle tips and confirm whether you will be able to leave a tip by credit card or should come prepared with cash.
- Read client reviews and follow up with references to make sure you're choosing the right limo service for you. For more, check out our tips for smart hiring.