He’s an “up from the boot straps” and all around good guy. He found a niche, liked it and has built a very successful business.
Our Q&A with Steve Marchi:
TAP: Tell us about yourself and how and why you got into the limousine business.
I started driving a limo part time in to earn extra money. I was living in New York, left my job to concentrate driving full time 2007. The money was good, the company had classic cars which I could take home, and I was married and had three small kids to support.
TAP: What type of vehicles and services do you offer?
We’ve got vehicles for any size and occasion: A white stretch limo that seats twelve, a black stretch that seats six, and several SUV’s. We also offer a passenger van.
I’m looking to purchase an Cadilliac Escalade and have it stretched to sixteen feet, not including the driver’s section. We train our drivers to take their time, drive it slow, and understand how to take corners – they have to think of where they are going to position the vehicle for an upcoming road situation.
Funny story. I had a call from a driver who went down a very narrow dead-end street in a stretch limo. Probably took him twenty to twenty-five “K” turns to get it to come around!
TAP: What airports do you serve?
We pick up and drop off to all of the following airports: Newark Liberty, JFK, LaGuardia, Atlantic City, Trenton-Mercer and Philadelphia. We also go up to Teterboro and Stuart in northern New York.
TAP: Please explain how technology helps you and your clients.
It has made us a lot more efficient and faster. The drivers get their assignments through their smartphones. I can change and update their schedules and they’ll know instantly.
We send all our customers who’ve made reservations a same-day email and the day of the ride, we call them. We’ve got a very good software program so that when we have 30 or more rides we can track them easily.
We also track any flight updates from multiple sources and we’ll inform our clients as soon as we know there’s a change.
TAP: What’s the best part of the business? The most challenging?
The best part is when we can personally help a client and prevent a trip disaster. One woman called us for a reservation and she gave us the information for her flight: Newark to Boston and coming home the next day. We always check, and I called her back saying that her flight itinerary was completely wrong, something like her departing flight was going from Boston to Maine and the return was from Newark to Seattle. She was very grateful. I literally have a dozen of these stories.
The challenge is scheduling our drivers, especially when the weather gets bad. But we’ll work with other limo companies and we’ll help each other out.
TAP: You’re a major Sponsor of the Monmouth Film Festival. How & why did you get involved with the organization?
I met Nick Marchese, the Founder of the Monmouth Film Festival at a Holmdel Chamber of Commerce meeting. He asked me about being a Sponsor for the MFF, but I said I can’t afford to be a sponsor right now and I refused.
With both of us being Italian, he put a gun to my head and I changed my mind. I’m just kidding!! We talked some more, came up with a plan and I thought it would be a good venue for us to showcase our business.
We’ll have limousines out front of the (Theo) Red Carpet outside the Two River Theater bringing those attendees to the theater and back to their hotels. Plus, we know many of our clients will be attending the Monmouth Film Festival.
Going to the airport or need a ride for a special occasion?
And want to get there safely and on time? Go in style and call All Occasion Limousine!
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