Once the fun stuff like the dress, the venue, the invitations and the cake are in order, it’s time to start dealing with the specific logistics for the wedding. For instance, you know who’s going to be celebrating with you and where they need to be, but how are they getting there?
As a general rule, issues with wedding transportation — encompassing movement of the bridal party, family, guests and of course the special getaway car — are best handled at least two to three months in advance of a wedding. If your wedding happens to fall in prime wedding season — April through June or October and November — the general rule is the earlier the better so you can be assured you’ll be able to book what you want and not have to compromise on second or third options.
Whether you have your heart set on a white limousine, a vintage Rolls Royce or party busses, there are three things you need to know before going to book: who do you need to transport, where do they need to go and when do they need to be there?
“If you call us with your information we can work with you to create the best option that works for you and whatever budget,” says, Cindi Lytle, director of operations for Nicoll’s Limousine and Shuttle Service. “Brides tend to get overwhelmed with this part of things so we make it easy. New Orleans is popular with destination weddings so we do a lot of shuttling guests from hotels to the wedding and then to the reception. Here we can even do rotating pickups and drop-offs of guests, which uses less of our busses, thus keeping costs down.”
For charter service like this, it’s common for companies to have a three-hour booking minimum. “You’d be surprised at how quickly that can go,” says Lytle.
With bridal party transportation, a popular option right now is Mercedes-Benz Sprinter vans. A van on the outside and limo on the inside, these vans offer perimeter-style limo seating complete with wet bar but, unlike with a limo, there is enough room to easily accommodate a large wedding dress, even allowing for the bride to stand up inside.
When it comes to the getaway car, this is a real place to make a statement and be a little different. Mallory Geary, outside sales manager and affiliate manager for Limousine Livery, says the company introduced an electric car option, a Tesla, to their fleet a few years ago.
“It’s definitely becoming more popular as brides look to do something a little different,” says Geary. “It’s black and sleek looking so it has a good style to it.”
While luxury motorized transport is always a popular choice, those looking to dip further into the past than an antique Rolls Royce can always go with a carriage. Here, Mid-City Carriages promotes themselves as the only local carriage company that offers not just mules, but also horses. For weddings in the French Quarter, the company offers a white, formally dressed-down carriage with one horse for $350 an hour. Prices rise to $550 for an hour outside of the Quarter.