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Graham Hutton
Experienced User
Username: gph

Post Number: 15
Registered: 1-2019
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 07:17:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

I have been looking at the possibility of providing a wedding car hire business (one maybe two cars) in semi retirement.
I am interested to know if any members here (specifically Australian members and Brisbane centric) have any experience or knowledge of this. I have done some basic research and the actual driving aspects don’t seem to be onerous to any extent.
Mrs GPH is of the opinion that more modern RR’s (specifically the spirits / Spurs ) wouldn’t be as popular. I would argue that an air conditioned Silver spirit in spotless condition would be every bit as elegant /Regal (and much cooler in summer) than a silver Ghost for example.
I’m looking to be serious about this, but won’t rely on it as a sole income source. I like to,drive, and I like Rolls Royce. Seems like an ideal “Hobby” to me ?
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David Gore
Moderator
Username: david_gore

Post Number: 3127
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 07:36:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Grahame,

During past discussions with one of our RROCA members who had a wedding hire car business, he commented one of the major problems was heavy wear and tear on the car's upholstery from heavily embroided, sequined and bejewelled bride and bridesmaid dresses.

You would need to include the cost of renovating upholstery in your assessment of the profitability of a hire car business.
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Graham Hutton
Experienced User
Username: gph

Post Number: 16
Registered: 1-2019
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 08:16:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

David, Good to know. I wonder if a "princess pillow" would help (LOL)
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David Gore
Moderator
Username: david_gore

Post Number: 3132
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 08:59:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

I suggest ear muffs as well...................
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Peter Maclaren
Experienced User
Username: ludo

Post Number: 42
Registered: 4-2009
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 11:01:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Hi Graham, I used my restored Shadow as a wedding car some years ago.It was meant to be a hobby too, but as it turned out it was a constant source of worry.
Each week the car had to be meticulously cleaned and polished and then I could't drive it until the next booking for fear of it getting damaged or dirty again requiring cleaning all over again.
As was mentioned above the upholstery is easily damaged by the bridal party and in my case a bride got nail varnish stripper spilt on to the seat squab. this wasn't noticed by me until the following day. The finish could not be touched up as the colour had faded, so I ended up having to redo all the leatherwork in the car to get it looking the same.
On two occasions friends of the Bride wanted photos of her in the car and while leaning on it managed to scratch right through my new paint with diamond rings.
Bridal parties do not care about your vehicle the way you do.
I eventually gave up weddings ,sold the car and
bought my current Bentley and swore never to let a bride anywhere near it
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Larry Kavanagh
Grand Master
Username: shadow_11

Post Number: 327
Registered: 5-2016
Posted on Tuesday, 05 February, 2019 - 15:43:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

I concur with the negative experiences outlined by contributors above. I always agree to doing bridal carriage for relatives, friends or neighbours as a favour for free but I find that I need to be extra vigilant when it comes to people having access to the car, amongst other things I've had photographers leaning through windows with cameras and sharp equipment and brides placing wet bouquets on the rear window ledge which can cause stains and general unintentional abuse by people who know no better. I don't need extra insurance as I don't carry passengers for financial reward, such insurance is very expensive in Ireland. Another drawback is that when you promise to take a bride to a wedding you can't let her down regardless of the weather and I don't like taking the car out on wet days but a promise is a promise. On a positive note however, doing occasional weddings in a good incentive for me to be proactive in keeping the car well serviced and polished. I've done maybe 10 weddings at most over the past 10 years. My next nuptial outing will be at the end of March and it involves approx. 500 miles round trip so I've just serviced the engine and cleaned the brakes and over the next couple of weeks I'll treat the leather upholstery to a feed and have the old girl (car that is) looking at her best. Some of these jobs might otherwise be put on the long finger so in some respects the car benefits from weddings too. Best of luck to you if you decide to proceed with the wedding hire venture. Good Spirits and Shadows can be picked up for relatively little money but I can't advise strongly enough the importance of a well maintained car with a good service record and a report from a reputable engineer who knows these particular cars inside out. Conversely, a cheap, poorly maintained Spirit or Shadow is probably the most expensive model you can buy in the long run. It helps a lot also if you're mechanically inclined and have good garage facilities as labour costs can be expensive and there aren't too many mechanics out there who are familiar with the intricacies of these cars.
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Graham Hutton
Experienced User
Username: gph

Post Number: 17
Registered: 1-2019
Posted on Wednesday, 06 February, 2019 - 11:02:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Thanks for the feed back, it has been very revealing
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Larry Kavanagh
Grand Master
Username: shadow_11

Post Number: 328
Registered: 5-2016
Posted on Wednesday, 06 February, 2019 - 13:19:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

It's funny how some enthusiasts like me take pride in their car's appearance. At a wedding a couple of years ago I dropped the bride off at the chapel door (she was late as is normal) but a sister-in-law of mine arrived on the scene - also late - and passed a remark to me, "she's looking well" she said and I replied explaining that she had just had a good polish and tyre dressing etc. The sister-in-law looked confused for a moment and then said "I was talking about the bride, not the car". It just goes to show that some folk can have a warped sense of where priorities should lie and this applies especially where women are concerned.
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Graham Hutton
Experienced User
Username: gph

Post Number: 18
Registered: 1-2019
Posted on Wednesday, 06 February, 2019 - 19:17:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Well done Larry , a man after my own heart

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