20 Essential Questions to Ask Wedding Transportation Companies

Go over these important points before making any final decisions.
Lauren Dana Ellman - The Knot Contributor.
by
Lauren Dana Ellman
Lauren Dana Ellman - The Knot Contributor.
Lauren Dana Ellman
The Knot Contributor
  • Lauren is a contributor for The Knot covering topics such as music, cakes, venues and speeches.
  • She has been published in a wide array of lifetsyle-oriented publications including SELF and Allure.
  • Lauren is a proud graduate of Syracuse University's SI Newhouse School of Public Communication.
Updated Dec 12, 2023

One of the most important—and overlooked—parts of wedding planning is booking transportation, which (shameless plug alert!) you can easily search for using The Knot Vendor Marketplace.

However, while searching for talented wedding vendors is simple and stress-free there are a lot of key factors to consider and questions to ask a transportation company. So, whether you've already hired a wedding transportation company or are in the process of researching and interviewing ones in your area, you'll want to keep reading. Ahead, we've rounded up the top 20 questions to ask about wedding transportation, along with expert-approved wedding transportation tips to help you avoid any mistakes or mishaps along the way.

In this article:

Wedding Transportation Company Questions About Transportation Options & Availability

Once you find wedding transportation services, it's important to ask them the below important questions about transportation options and availability before you go ahead and book.

1. Are you available on our wedding day?

This one goes without saying, but before booking any wedding transportation services, be sure the company is available on the exact date and time(s) you need!

2. What are all of the options within your fleet?

From vintage cars and horse-drawn carriages to limos and party buses, wedding transportation options abound. That said, when searching for prospective wedding transportation companies, double-check they have exactly what you're looking for.

3. How many people can comfortably fit into one vehicle?

Safety is, without a doubt, of the utmost importance when it comes to booking wedding transportation. But besides the fact that all wedding guests, wedding party members and family members need to be safe and comfortable while in transit, you'll also need to know the capacity of the car(s) to determine 1) the mode of transportation/vehicle you choose (i.e. cars, buses, limos, trolleys and so on) and 2) how many of them you'll need.

Wedding Transportation Company Questions About Transportation Logistics

When booking wedding transportation, it's a good idea to be as detail-oriented as possible.

4. Is your fleet large enough to transport our entire guest count at once without looping?

"This may or may not be a large concern, but even venues that are 10-15 minutes away, the earliest arriving guests, often arriving too early, are left awkwardly standing in an event space before an event has started," explains Aspen, Colorado-based wedding planner Juls Sharpley. "It's important to transport all guests at once, not only for your guests, but early guest arrival also impacts and interrupts the setup of the teams on-site (caterers, planners, florists, etc.) and also cuts into the time they've allocated for setup, either consolidating it to within a crunch that isn't realistic or not allowing them to properly finish while also attending to early arriving guests."

5. Do you allow a split schedule?

According to Sharpley, "Some companies will have longer minimums but will allow you to split the hours between transporting guests there and then transporting them back." She continues, telling The Knot that "there is typically a large gap where we don't need all of the shuttles available and on standby, so they may allow you to take a break (and save some money) and then return at a later time." That said, the pro does recommend having at least one or two transportation options on standby through the break time in the event of an emergency, to retrieve children earlier from reception or if a guest simply wants to leave early.

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6. What is your policy on guests being in seats?

Sharpley always likes to make sure her clients' wedding transportation vendors allow standing capacity. "It's not ideal," she says, "but at the end of the night, when everyone's a bit tipsy and headed home (or to an after-party), everyone wants to be together, and more people definitely can equal more fun." With that in mind," It's nice to be forewarned if they are super strict about seats or allow people to stand!"

7. Can we see a copy of the operating license and insurance certificate?

As previously mentioned, safety is crucial, so it's absolutely necessary for couples to dot all the i's and cross all the t's. Part of this includes asking for a copy of the driver's license and insurance certification so that, in the event of an accident or damage to the vehicle itself (i.e. bubbly stains) you won't be on the hook. Remember, it's always better to be safe than sorry!

Wedding Transportation Company Questions About Backup & Day-Of Considerations

Be as prepared as possible—and go into the wedding day without any added stress—by asking these wedding transportation company questions about backup and day-of considerations ahead of time.

8. Do you provide signage?

"It's important to know whether the shuttle company will be providing the signage indicating that these are, in fact, the shuttles for your wedding," says Sharpley. "If not, make a plan for your planner to have some and install them as shuttles arrive."

9. Do you provide water?

Sharpley recommends ensuring that your wedding transportation company provide water(s) so that you can "quickly and easily access [it] if needed." Besides, we all know the importance of staying hydrated!

10. How can our wedding planner or other point person contact you on the day of the wedding?

As with any relationship, communication is key—and this even extends to your wedding transportation vendors! With this in mind, says Sharpley, "Make sure they will provide actual names and phone numbers of the drivers for the day for the planner to communicate or have a VERY active dispatch available at all times that they are contracted for your event. It's important that we are able to get a hold of the drivers if needed!"

11. What happens if a vehicle breaks down?

Kimberly Sisti, a San Diego-based florist, wedding planner and owner of SISTI & CO, advises asking your prospective wedding transportation vendor what happens if the vehicle(s) break down. What's more, she says, "Knowing the company's protocol and plan will be the most important thing if there is a vehicle issue that prevents the guests from arriving on time."

Wedding Transportation Company Questions About Costs & Fees

Wedding transportation costs can be high, and you'll want to be super clear on exactly what's included in the vendor's fees. To avoid any confusion, consider asking the below questions about costs and fees.

12. Do you have minimum hours per shuttle/driver?

According to Sharpley, 'This is important because many times, couples think that picking a venue that's closer will save them money on transportation, but that is not always the case." She continues, telling The Knot, "The shuttles will likely have a 3-5 hour minimum, so you'll pay the same whether you're transporting guests a mile or 10!"

13. What is your cancellation/adjustment policy?

"At the beginning," explains Sharpley, "You should book the maximum number of shuttles you could possibly need," which, for her, means "booking enough for your anticipated guest count + 10%, booking separate shuttles for the wedding party and family (one for each group of each side, but also taking into consideration the number of people that is in each grouping and adjusting accordingly)." From there, you should be able to adjust as necessary once you receive more RSVPs "so that you can cancel a vehicle here or there as your guest count and plans change once you know what they are going to be!"

14. Do you have wedding packages?

By asking this question, you'll have a better idea of if the transportation company specializes in weddings and/or if they provide fun perks like balloons, champagne flutes and more. Also, in some cases, you may even receive a group discount if you're booking several cars/vehicles for your wedding.

15. Who is responsible for the cost of gas or mileage?

Andrea Smith, Chicago-based wedding planner and owner of SoiréeSmith tells The Knot that it's vital for couples to understand if gas or mileage costs are included in the quote or if they are somewhat of a hidden fee. If it's the latter, it's definitely worth pointing out, "especially if there is a larger distance between your accommodations and the wedding venue."

16. Is gratuity included?

"Nothing is more awkward than a driver expecting to be tipped at the end of the night when you were told the gratuity was already included," says Sisti. To avoid any mishaps or finger-pointing, she recommends couples "confirm what is expected and either pay the gratuity ahead of time or identify a contact person who can supply the tip at the end of the night."

Wedding Transportation Company Questions About Experience

We're going to take a wild guess and say that you want to provide your family, wedding party members and guests with the best experience possible all throughout your wedding day—and this includes the transportation! That said, here are a few questions you can ask potential wedding transportation vendors to ensure a pleasant and comfortable experience.

17. Do you allow other beverages on the shuttles? If so, what are the cleaning fees?

Many of Sharpley's clients "would also like to provide Champagne, beer, wine, sodas, etc. on the shuttles." With that in mind, "You want to make sure this is allowed first and then also find out what the cleaning fees are so you're aware upfront in case there is excessive spilling!"

18. Are your vehicles air-conditioned?

According to Sisti, "Nothing is worse than getting into a vehicle that doesn't have adequate or working air conditioning," and, if you're having a summer wedding, this is an especially important factor to consider. Put simply, Sisti says, "Guest comfort is of the utmost importance on hot days, and air-conditioning availability is at the center of that concern."

19. What do the drivers wear?

Smith recommends "ask[ing] if the transportation company has a uniform." If they don't have a uniform, take it a step further by asking how their drivers are expected to dress. For example, "If you have a black-tie wedding, a driver in jeans and a hooded sweatshirt is likely not the tone you want to greet your guests. Consider this your sign not to overlook this tiny detail!

20. What are the ages of the proposed vehicles? Are they planning on adding to their fleet by your event date?

"Knowing the quality of the maintenance is important to know," says Sisti. Besides, she adds, "No one wants to get onto a 30-year-old bus that has a loud humming noise and sounds like it can't get up a hill.

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