To be a good chauffeur you need to present yourself smartly, be courteous, professional and polite. It is also your responsibility to ensure you plan your journeys effectively to make sure you get the clients where they need to be in good time. Working as a chauffeur tends to fall into two categories – working for yourself, building up a client base of private and corporate clients, or driving for a chauffeur company. If you do decide to go it alone, the first thing you’ll need is to buy or lease an appropriate vehicle, but there are some other major considerations too, not least insurance and licensing.
What type of insurance do I need?
To be a professional chauffeur you will need a licence from your local authority and the appropriate vehicle insurance. Chauffeur insurance may also be referred to as executive vehicle insurance or prestige vehicle insurance. It differs from private hire insurance in that as a chauffeur, journeys are pre-booked and cash is not collected from passengers. Also, it is typically large and comfortable prestige cars that are used for chauffeuring, for example Mercedes, BMWs, Rolls-Royce and Bentleys.
Insurance is available at a number of levels – fully comprehensive, third party, fire and theft, and third party only. Which you choose is up to you. But you may also wish to consider extras like public liability insurance, which will give you added cover should anything happen to your passenger or their belongings whilst in your car. Another thing to consider is breakdown cover and courtesy car options to ensure that if the worst does happen, you can get back on the road as soon as possible, meaning you can keep providing a professional service and keep earning.
What about costs?
The cost of your cover will depend on the level you choose and any extras you decide to go with. However, chauffeur insurance is seen as less risky than private or mini-cab hire as chauffeurs don’t carry cash and cars are pre-booked, often by regular clients or just one client. This means that chauffeur insurance tends to be fairly competitive in the field.
It can really help to talk to an experienced insurance professional who can advise on the type of cover that you need and any extras that may be of benefit to you, helping you to make sense of what is required for your particular circumstances.