There are many reasons why people may want to hire a chauffeur. This can range from special occasions, (such as weddings or prom night) important business people who may need to be collected from the airport, brought to their hotel and be shown around the city, or some people who would simply like to be driven to a special anniversary dinner. Many chauffeurs may even be hired permanently and privately by families who wish to be driven to work or special events. Other private individuals who employ chauffeurs permanently include large companies or organizations, hotels and tour operators or special events organizers. Chauffeurs usually drive a high powered comfortable car which can range from a sedan, a stretch limousine to a super stretch limousine.
In order to become a chauffeur, you may be required to take some courses which would teach you proper methods that ensure the safety of your passengers at all times. These courses can teach you how to control your car if you get a flat tire while driving at high speed and how to remain calm if your vehicle goes out of control. Many companies may even require you to take their own courses which would show you what is to be expected from a chauffeur that works for their company. These courses could include teaching you proper etiquette, the proper attire that should be worn and sometimes even drug screening to ensure that their drivers are always of the highest standards. Some companies may insist that you meet a certain minimum age, (which is usually 21) some require additional driving licenses and that you have no history of drink driving, accidents etc. In other words, that your driving history is clean. You may also need to be a non-smoker, be able to speak other languages and have a basic knowledge of car maintenance.(eg. How to change a flat tire)
You need to have many skills to be a chauffeur. These include not only driving skills but many others also. Chauffeurs always need to maintain a smart appearance. Some companies may require you to wear a uniform which could include a tuxedo and a hat. You also need to enjoy working with people, inter personal skills is a very important characteristic of a chauffeur. You always need to be polite, accommodating and punctual. Often you may come across a rude customer but you need to remain calm and polite and hold the door open for them. You may even need to hold an umbrella over their head if its raining! You need to be able to respect peoples privacy and be able to keep information to yourself. One of the most important customers that you may have to drive could be businessmen and it is essential that you do not divulge any information that you may overhear. You always need to be flexible and patient with your customers. A chauffeur usually has no fixed working hours- you may need to spend nights away from home and your family and you may have to work early mornings, evenings, bank holidays and weekends. Sometimes chauffeurs may also only have temporary or part time work so you basically need to be on call 24/7. Even when you are on a job you need to be flexible and patient, as you can often be left waiting for long periods of time on your passenger. And although it may sound strange, a chauffeur needs to maintain a high level of fitness as you will often need to lift heavy luggage or goos into and out of the car.
If you ensure that your car is of a high standard, for example that you have vacuumed the interior, washed the exterior of the vehicle and cleaned the windows and mirrors this will also impress your customer. Attention to detail is very important which is why other conveniences and luxuries that can be found inside the vehicle, such as newspapers, music, drinks and televisions have become so popular over recent years. Another facility that has developed is satellite and tracking devices that are now being installed into many vehicles. This technology enables the chauffeur to avoid sudden stops and turns which makes the journey even more comfortable for the passenger. Through this device you can also receive directions, traffic advisories and weather reports, which can in turn lessen the duration of the journey.
Opportunities for advancement as a chauffeur are limited but it has to be said that there are many skills required to be a good chauffeur and if these skills are carried out properly, the good work that has been done will surely not go unnoticed.