Ask These Questions before Hiring a Charter Bus Rental Company

In today’s marketplace there are a lot of different charter bus rental companies available to consumers and it is tough to know which one to choose.  With a large group of people in the vehicle it is important to ask the right questions so that you can make sure you get a safe and reliable company.  Don’t take a chance on transportation for you next group event by selecting the cheapest company.  Make sure you know as much as you can about the company you are looking to hire by asking the right questions.

Charter Bus Interior Executive Seating

1.  What is the charter bus rental company’s safety record?

Has the charter bus rental company had an accidents or injury’s since being in business?  How does the U.S. department of transportation rate the company? Visit their site for more information on each companies rating.

2.  Does your company have the proper current licenses?

Does the charter bus rental company have the proper licenses to operate in the locations your are going?  Also is the driver properly licensed to operate the vehicle you are requesting?  In Michigan bus and motor coach operators are required to have a minimum $5 million insurance policy.  All of the chauffeurs or drivers are required to have a commercial drivers license.

3.  What type of training/monitoring do you have in place for your drivers?

Not only is it important to know if the drivers or chauffeurs are properly licensed but you should go a step further and ask about the training and monitoring programs in place.  A good company should do ongoing training, extra safety training, and do random drug testing.  Other good questions to ask is what is the drivers or chauffeurs uniform and what type of experience do they have.  If the itinerary is demanding experience can play an important role in things going smoothly. Keep in mind motor coach and charter bus chauffeurs have government mandated time limits on the amount of driving they can do.  This is important for your safety and a good charter bus rental company will make sure to stand by those rules.

4. What type of charter buses do you have?

Ask the charter bus company about the condition, size and age of the bus or buses they have.  Buses typically range is size from 20 to 56 passengers so quotes can be changed to fit the size of your group.  The amenities in Motor Coaches can also vary drastically so look into the amenities that are important to your group.  Things such as WiFi, onboard restroom, wood floors, PA system, leather seating, TV’s and satellite radio are all options.  Also ask the company if the vehicle is available to be seen in person or if you can request a particular vehicle.

5.  What separates the company from other Charter Bus rental companies?

A company should be able to tell you why they are different from the competition.   Ask how long the company has been in business and what their service level is?  Do they have someone answering the phones 24 hours a day?  Do they guarantee on time arrival of their vehicles?  You would be surprised by how many motor coach companies close at 5pm and do not answer their phones. Make sure you understand this incase being able to contact the company for last minute changes or questions is important to your group.

6.  Do you have any references?

Ask the company for a list of references.  A good company will have credible references from other businesses or individuals who have used their service.

7.  Are there any additional amenities available or included?

Not all charter bus rental companies provided the same type of amenities so it is important to be clear on what they offer.   Most companies should include bottled water and ice in the vehicle. Also ask about on board TV’s and Wifi?

8.  Do you have a back up plan in place?

While no one expects a vehicle to break down it is important that the company have a back up plan in place something was to happen.  A company should have some type of plan in place for sending a replacement vehicle or multiple vehicles to get the group moving in a timely manner again.

9.  How are the vehicle maintained?

Ask if the vehicles are cleaned after each run and how they are services.   It is important to make sure that you are getting a clean vehicle as their will be a lot of people in one space.  Also is maintenance done by a licensed mechanic onsite or off site?

10. What is the cost of the trip?

Ask about the cost associated with the trip you are looking for.  Make sure they explain all of the charges and possible charges that may be incurred during the trip. Do they have extra fees if you are paying by credit card? What is the deposit and cancellation policy to get a refund?  If you are requesting a specific time frame what are the costs for going over? Most charter bus rental companies should be able to give you a total cost with the exception of tolls, parking, and other variable fees.  If you are still undecided when getting a quote ask the company to email one to you so you have it for future reference.