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Limousine Etiquette

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It’s fun to rent a limousine for special occasions such as weddings, bachelor and bachelorette parties, birthdays, sporting events and anniversaries. Many people, however, aren’t quite sure how to act in a limousine, and when it comes to tipping the driver, they become even more confused.

Let us help you navigate the sometimes tricky terrain known as limousine etiquette.

Don’t Be Late

It goes without saying that no one wants to be late for their special affair. But keeping the driver waiting beyond your contracted hours not only costs extra money, it may make the driver late for another appointment. Even if he has no other parties, the driver agreed to work a certain amount of time and may expect to get home to his family. The customer should make arrangements at the beginning of the night to extend the contract.

Remember the Relationship

A chauffeur / passenger relationship is a business relationship like any other. Treat the limo driver with respect and he should do the same. A professional, experienced driver should limit interaction to the necessities and let the passengers determine how much or how little they want to make small talk.

Many companies have a policy that the privacy window privilege remains at the driver’s discretion, but most will keep it up unless they see a reason not to. Be polite and courteous at all times and expect the driver to do the same.

Proper Behavior

Many limousines provide alcohol for passengers of legal drinking age. This combination of a luxurious vehicle and unlimited alcohol often creates problems, even with responsible adults. There are certain things one simply doesn’t do in a limo:

  • Verbally or physically harass the driver or other passengers
  • Use rude or lewd language in ways that upset the driver
  • Stand up with one's head sticking out of the sun roof
  • Use illegal drugs
  • Damage any part of the limo, from upholstery to electronics

No Smoking

Most limousine companies prohibit smoking cigarettes or cigars for the comfort of other passengers and to keep cars smelling clean and new.

Gratuity Included?

Many companies include a gratuity in the final price of a limousine rental. In this case, it’s acceptable to add an additional tip in cash, given directly to the driver, for exceptional service. If gratuity is not included, 20 percent of the total bill is appropriate, although tipping more for exceptional limousine service is also common.

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