The hardest thing about booking transportation is that you need to book on a complete guess, because you can’t wait to book it until you know how many people are staying at a hotel, etc. We always recommend booking transportation sooner than later so you know you have a vehicle secured and prices only go up, so it’s best to lock in rates when they are lower.
Things to consider:
- Figure out the hotels you will have room block at first, and then come up with your best estimate of how many guests you think would take the shuttle.
- Decide how many trips you would need before the ceremony. Consider how the wedding party is getting to the venue if they are getting ready at the hotel, if some people need to come early for family photos, and how many trips it can make for everyone else before the ceremony.
- If you have two trips to a hotel with a shuttle before the ceremony, assume that most people will try to get on the later one. If your shuttle is not big enough to carry all of those people, then you will need to encourage some people, like closer family and plus-ones of the wedding party, to take the earlier shuttle.
- Buffer time needs to be built into your transportation shuttle for people to get on and off the shuttle, and for it to turn around and go back for more people. Plus, shuttle will just take a little longer to get from point to point due to its size.
- When trying to determine when to have your shuttle pick up times, you will need to think about check-in times at the hotel, time of day and traffic. If your hotel doesn’t let people check in until 4:00 and it’s a Friday, and your ceremony is at 4:30, it probably won’t work to have a 4:15 shuttle as your last shuttle from your hotel to your ceremony location that is 10 minutes away. It won’t give people time to check in and you are cutting it too close for Friday afternoon traffic.
- Only have a shuttle to one or two hotels, even if you have room blocks at more. There are too many chances for error the more stops you have it make.
- You can’t and won’t please everyone with your shuttle times and pick up/drop off locations. Do what works best for you and what’s within your budget. Having an option for people is a great service to your guests, but it won’t work for everyone.
- Put your shuttle schedule on your website and also have a sign at the hotel. You can have a sign at the reception too and/or have your DJ make announcements.
- At the end of the night, if there are still 50 guests at your wedding dancing their hearts out who are planning on taking your 30 passenger shuttle, that math doesn’t add up. Some people will need to take the next shuttle or find another way back to the hotel.
- Don’t forget to leave room for yourselves on the last shuttle if you are planning on taking it!
Any transportation company will need to know the dates, times and locations of all of your pick up and drop off locations, or pretty close to it, in order to give you a quote. You can always adjust things later on when you know your timing and schedule better, but the important thing is to get the vehicle(s) secured with a deposit for your date.
Have more questions about wedding day transportation? Contact us to hire a wedding professional that can help you with all of the details!
Looking for more tips? Check out our blog on booking room blocks HERE or our list of things that impact your wedding day timeline HERE.