What is a Private Airport Shuttle Service?
Private airport shuttles are generally used by families, solo travelers, business groups, travel companies, etc. Passengers are picked up from determined stops and transported to the airport. Private airport shuttles operate much like buses, but specifically for airport travelers, and are booked on request. An airport shuttle service can be a very difficult business to manage because it requires lots of logistical planning, scheduling, and maintenance or else it can become a mess if it is not executed properly. This is why it is important to research the shuttle business thoroughly prior to launching service. Running an airport shuttle company, requires a lot of hard work, organization and efficiency. Operating such a business can be especially challenging due to high competition and the high cost of entry.
Cost of Operations
There are many different costs that go into the operation of an airport shuttle business and one should have an estimated budget of what will be being spent once the business is up and running. It is critical to have sufficient financial backing to support a fully operational business. Managing the finances is what will make or break any aspiring airport shuttle service.
Financial obligations of running an airport shuttle service:
- cost of fuel
- cost of purchasing/renting vehicles
- cost of labor
- cost of website
- cost of office
- costs of vehicle maintenance
- cost of marketing/advertising
- cost of required permits and licenses
- cost of vehicle and personal insurance
Critical Components For Shuttle Services
Before your service begins, you need the following essential elements to keep your business up and running:
- At least one working vehicle that has enough capacity to seat at least 7 people comfortably.
- A reliable driver who understands the routes to be taken and the stops to be made.
- An office location.
- Scheduling software which provides accurate management of drivers.
- A list of routes and services offered.
- All the necessary permits and business licenses needed for operating.
- A website or mobile app that can be used by customers to book the shuttle service.
Companies providing airport shuttle services have enhanced their bottom line by adopting the following practices:
- Investing in property in the airport area. Use the land for a parking lot and maybe offices. Park-and-ride services, where passengers pay to park and then ride a van to and from the airport, and back to their vehicle, are also available. The office space is ideal, and the parking lot can house your vehicles when they are not in use.
- advertising in hospitals, nursing homes, hotels and restaurants.
- Approaching local businesses such as casinos, resorts, and other enterprises that deal with lots of clients who require shuttle service to and from the airport.
- Connecting with local event planners and caterers. When parking is scarce close to the party location, hosts will often arrange airport shuttle services
- Providing customers with a selection of car sizes and types.
Realistic Expectations of Running an Airport Shuttle
The day to day operations running an airport shuttle company may start a bit bumpy. A typical day on the job would require managing the shuttle schedules, supervision of the shuttle drivers, making sure customers are satisfied with their rides and service. In addition there is of course the bookkeeping, the marketing and the vehicle maintenance and detailing. This is a serious business, that requires considerable startup costs, lots of labor, and a real sense of purpose and accountability.