If you enjoy driving and want to make money doing it, you might consider becoming a chauffeur. Whoa. Hold on. It’s not as easy as it sounds. Being a good chauffeur has many responsibilities—besides just sitting behind the wheel of a stylish limo. Here are some things you’ll have to do and some skills you’ll have to acquire to become a professional chauffeur:
Be personable. Not all your passengers will be beautiful women (or hunky guys) and rock stars. You’ll have to maintain a pleasant personality in the face of picky, demanding, often grumpy individuals. People who think money puts them above you. You’ll sometimes be treated as a “non-person,” as merely “the help.”
Be knowledgeable. You’ll be expected to know every hotel, night club, theater, museum, art gallery and major street like the back of your hand. Your passengers will treat you like a concierge on wheels. You’ll be the “go to” person for answers to a multitude of questions about life in your city.
Be presentable. You’ll have to look like you “have it together.” If your clientele is mostly corporate top brass, you’ll have to look like an aspiring young CEO—no neck tats, no facial piercings, coat and tie, and “little-boy regular” haircut. If your clientele falls into the film and rock star category, you’ll have to keep up with the trends in that industry. Incidentally, being presentable also applies to your limo. It should be showroom clean, inside and out, and always freshly stocked with snacks and liquor.
Be discrete. A lot goes on in the back of a limo. You may hear and see things that would make headlines, break up companies and marriages, and feed rumor mills. It’s up to you to keep these things to yourself. Many a chauffeur have been fired for blabbing what they heard afterward at parties.
Be legal. You’ll need to determine your state’s specific requirements and appropriate credentials for employment as a professional chauffeur. There may be a minimum age requirement. You’ll also need to have and maintain a clean driving record. One moving violation, maybe—but no DUIs. Getting a chauffeur’s license also means learning how to drive and park an extra long car. Depending on your employers, you may even be required to learn some defensive-driving techniques. Some colleges offer programs that are taught by professional chauffeurs.
Be in control. If your clientele are rock stars, TV or film personalities, you’ll have to show them that you won’t tolerate certain behaviors. That means, from the minute they step into your limo, you have to show them that you’re in control of the ride. No speeding through red lights, no drugs, no “mooning” through windows or flashing breasts through the sunroof.
Being a chauffeur has its rewards, but it also has its responsibilities. If you have a passion for this career, you’ll accept both.