Chauffeurs Are Not “Drivers”

Drivers are all the same, right? They all do the same job: pilot a vehicle and take it from point A to point B. But, that’s where you got wrong. There are two classifications to this profession: drivers and chauffeurs. And no, “chauffeur” is not a fancy way of referring to a driver.

Why Chauffeurs Aren’t Drivers

There’s one thing about chauffeurs and drivers. Drivers aren’t always professionals, but chauffeurs are  actual licensed professionals. Chauffeurs go through a much more complicated process before they’re allowed to go behind the wheel.

The more stringent process that chauffeurs go through also mandate them to do much more than the average driver. Here at Encore Cars, our chauffeurs are more than knowledgeable in these aspects:

  • Pre-trip safety inspections before operating a vehicle – The chauffeur makes sure that the vehicle is in tip-top shape by doing both pre-trip checks, as well as subsequent inspections at every stop. Chauffeurs look after the safety of their passengers.
  • Map and route reading – Chauffeurs rarely find themselves lost. They are trained to know where a city’s centre point, as well as where the north and south is.
  • Customer service – When was the last time you had a chatty cabbie take you around the city? That’s one of the biggest differences between drivers and chauffeurs. Professional chauffeurs treat their clients with respect, courtesy and utmost professionalism. They’re basically comparable to butlers. When they say they’re ‘at your service’, they’re literally at your service.

Another truth about chauffeurs is the guarantee of top-notch service. These professionals carry the company’s name on their sleeves; they serve as ambassadors for the company itself. That alone is enough guarantee of a safe, desirable transaction; said companies have a positive reputation to uphold.

We at Encore Cars are hold our chauffeurs in high esteem, and for good reason. If you’re looking for a chauffeur service that puts considerable focus on professionalism and overall passenger safety, we can help you.

Business People Don’t Hire Chauffeurs for Fun: They Need It

Driving is a relaxing activity. It should be.

But, for those who simply have too much on their plates, a road stroll can become a road rage somewhere along the way.

In particular, business people or the elites are the ones who often go for chauffeur services. While it’s true that its main benefit is that it provides extra leisure time in the back, there’s much more to this story than meets the eye.

From what our clients tell us, many people find driving troublesome, especially when they’re focusing. So, for those who are preparing for a meeting, a business proposal, or any important event, having someone take over the wheels is a great way to de-stress.

Below are the reasons business people hire chauffeurs other than for fun:

It’s a Social Status

The line of cars available for a chauffeur service is often luxury cars. Of course, when a prominent businessman or figure visits a particular country or a far-off city, they should still look their part. Arriving in a limousine, Mercedes-Benz, or Rolls-Royce is an unspoken rule for the top elite.

It’s a common gesture that must be fulfilled to sustain influence and command.

It Serves as a Mini Office Space

As previously mentioned, some business people have a lot to do for the day that driving becomes out of the question. That’s why a lot of chauffeur-driven cars now come with Wi-Fi connection, mini office tables, coffee makers, and such, so the business can start as soon as possible.

This overall improves the daily productivity and preparation times of the bosses, which is an impossible thing to accomplish lone.

It’s a Give-and-Take Setup for the Economy

Chauffeur services is an exclusive mode of transportation, but no matter how fancy they are, it’s still all business. So, to contribute to the economy, business professionals should do their part by hiring these kinds of services.

Thinking purely based on the costs and expenses, hiring a chauffeur does make sense. Since someone will be driving you to work, you can use the extra time to do more and gain more.

Ten smart tips to make your next business trip easier

It’s no wonder that travelling can be a stressful affair when you have to contend with huge waiting lines at the airport, long flights and other general discomforts for a work trip. If you are unfamiliar with your destination, even simple tasks such as finding good restaurants, gyms and entertainment can be a chore. With that in mind, we bring you ten of the best tips to help you make the most out of your working day and have some time to left over to sit back and enjoy the experience of business travel.

  1. Double book flights for important trips

If missing out on a meeting or event is not an option, it may be a good idea to double book your flight for added security in case a flight is delayed or cancelled. Do this by purchasing a fully refundable ticket from a different airline but be sure to double check the airline’s terms and conditions in order to make your claim once you have successfully boarded your intended flight. Most airlines offer fully refundable tickets to passengers who fly business class.

  1. Pack smart

A good way of making sure you have all your essentials in the event your luggage gets lost in transit is to pack a carry-on bag. Include your valuables, clothing and toiletries and medicines if you have any; to make room for crucial items you can skimp on things that can be bought easily at your destination. It helps to choose the right hand luggage that fits the airline’s specifications and to double check how much your bags weigh so that you won’t end up having to check them in.

  1. Arrange your mode of transport in prior to the trip

Chauffeured airport transfers are an excellent way of getting around efficiently and will impress your clients at the same time. It is reassuring to have a pre-arranged limo smoothly take you from airport to hotel in comfort with none of the stress of having to wait for your pick up or wonder if your driver knows where he or she is going. Professional chauffeurs are often friendly, knowledgeable about the local area and are more than happy to assist you in whatever way they can.

  1. Maintain a healthy lifestyle on the move

 Staying healthy is even more of a challenge when you are out of your usual environment but by eating and sleeping properly, you will be better equipped to tackle your working day. Arrive refreshed at your destination by maintaining your routine as best as you can – eat, sleep and brush your teeth at the same time you normally would and stay hydrated by drinking lots of water during the flight. On arrival, keep up your healthy habits by preparing healthy snacks such as fruit and yoghurt to carry with you and avoid excessive alcohol and heavy foods. It doesn’t hurt to take a dose of multivitamins to ensure you get all the nutrients you need to power on.

  1. Prepare for any potential or existing health issues

According to a government health agency, there is a 50% that overseas travellers will experience a travel-related illness the most common of which is gastrointestinal infection. For this reason it is best to avoid poorly prepared or raw foods such as milk and uncooked eggs as well as untreated water if you are unsure of the hygiene standards of the place you are visiting. For other medical issues you may have, it is handy to check in with your GP before you travel and obtain all the necessary medications and prescriptions beforehand. Also have a medical check up and find out the closest place for you to get medical attention before you leave.

  1. Use the concierge

Hotel concierges are extremely useful for anything from directing you to the best spas and salons in the area to helping you find the local gym. The concierge at luxury hotels like the Four Seasons or Westin has extensive contacts with top restaurants and can often arrange last minute reservations for you not to mention a better table than you may be able to get yourself.

  1. Make use of technology

There are many handy apps and websites that can make travel a whole lot easier. Try Flightstats.com to check the status of your flight, Tripit, an all-in-one travel organiser and Translate. You can check online reviews to scout local gems or use maps on your smart phone to explore someplace new. To keep track of finances, download a currency converter app.

  1. Learn the local lingo

It’s important to know the basics of the local language if you’re visiting a non-English speaking place. Not only will you be more respected for making an effort, learning a few key phrases such as “please”, “thank you” and “where is…” will help you get assistance if you find yourself on your own without a translator. Brush up on the local etiquette, culture and laws to avoid causing offence especially at business meetings.

  1. Arrange for internet and phone access

For the modern business traveller, steady internet and phone access is crucial to productivity. In more metropolitan places it can be easy to find free wifi hotspots but consider buying an international data plan to ensure that you always have access. Negotiate with your mobile service provider to establish rates as they may be able to set up a deal for you which will save both time and money. You will have the advantage of having an internet connection no matter where you are. If you are unable to obtain a wireless connection, check with your hotel to see if they offer a wired option or have workstations available for rent.

  1. Track your expenses

Having to put together an expense report after an exhausting business trip can be fairly unpleasant especially if you are inputting them by hand. Try using an automated expense app such as Concur Travel & Expense will save you the hassle of gathering bits of travel papers and receipts for your report. Other similar apps include Trip Boss which is an expense and budget travel manager with tip and currency calculators and XpenseTracker which features a mileage tracker, both available on iTunes.

Spring Time Fever

With summer just around the corner in Sydney, there are a multitude of events and festivities that are perfect for celebrating the warm weather. Whether you are looking for a relaxing day out or a fun filled party, kick start your spring time revelries with our exciting list of events and get there in style with Encore.

Spring time in Sydney is dominated by the fabulous Spring Racing Carnival (14 Sep – 19 Oct) which is fast becoming one of Sydney’s iconic events of the year. With newly renovated facilities worth 150 million, the Royal Randwick Racecourse and Rosehill Racecourse are perfect venues for a buzzing fashion and social scene. The premier event of the Spring Racing Carnival is Golden Rose Stakes at Rosehill, held on Saturday 14 September with a prize of 1 million, the richest in Sydney.

Book your ticket at http://theraces.com.au/

Hit the Northern Beaches for the Willoughby Spring Festival (1-30 Sep) and Manly Arts Festival (19-29 Sep). The month-long Willoughby Spring Festival is packed full of events that range from fashion, art, music and theatre. Highlights include a street parade through the heart of Chatswood and Sands of the Silicate, a one-off event featuring the lighting of a fire sculpture to be held on Saturday 28 September. Similarly Manly Arts Festival is loaded with attractions featuring exhibitions, films, concerts and dance.

For more information see http://springfestival.willoughby.nsw.gov.au/ and http://www.manlyartsfestival.com/

In tune with the increasingly balmy weather, the must-see production of South Pacific will be playing at the Opera House from 10 September to 2 November. South Pacific is a sell out show featuring acclaimed Australian actors and singers Lisa McCune, Teddy Tahu Rhodes and Christine Anu. Escape into catchy tunes like Some Enchanted Evening, There is Nothin’ Like a Dame and Bali Ha’I and immerse yourself in the romance of two couples dealing with the realities of WWII. For a glamourous and stress free night out, book in advance at Ticketek to get the best seats in the house.

Visit http://southpacificmusical.com.au/ or http://www.opera-australia.org.au/whatson/south_pacific/sydney

Spring Races Fashion 2013

Spring racing season is upon us and what better way to celebrate than to dress up and enjoy a friendly bet over a glass of champagne with friends. It’s important to look your very best and this year’s various events is a chance to showcase your personal style. If you are in need of inspiration on what to wear this season or want to update your current look, here’s a list of all the latest trends and essentials to get you started on perfecting your Spring races wardrobe!

Ladies Spring Racing Fashion

For 2013, it’s all about 1920’s style flair, monochrome and elegant classics. Think the Great Gatsby, and sophisticated style muses like Grace Kelly and Liz Taylor. Channel the glamour of silver screen actresses with a modern day interpretation for the races. Remember that race day fashion needs to look polished and put-together so even though the ensemble doesn’t have to match, the components of the outfit have to complement each other.

Headwear: An essential part of race day fashion. From fascinators to hats and everything in between, headwear should reflect your style and personality. Popular colours for 2013 are bold shades of green, purple fuchsia and tangerine. Choose your headwear according to the occasion and weather conditions and consider visiting a milliner who will make a piece uniquely tailored for you.

Frocks: Continuing with the 1920’s flapper trend, look no further than the Great Gatsby for your style inspiration. Key looks include flared dresses, ruffles, feathers and furs along with pretty pastels and romantic lace, beading and other intricate details. For another classic look, black and white ensembles are right on trend so look for monochromatic stripes and block patterns.

Shoes: Shoes can make or break your spring races outfit and should be chosen to add the finishing touches to your outfit without detracting from it. Make sure they are in good condition and invest in accessories such as silicon pads to avoid blisters and a pair of heel protectors such as Starlettos which will prevent your heels from sinking in the grass so that you can stay on your feet all day long at the races.

Men’s Spring Racing Fashion

The Spring Racing trends for 2013 are blue, in all different shades, and French Riviera inspired fashion with its striped patterns and palette of red, white, navy and black. Utilise a combination of textures to play up the contrast between separate pieces. Be on the lookout for combinations of wool, cotton, linen and silk as well as standout accessories such as hats, hankies, socks and ties to pull off a sophisticated race day look.

Headwear: Heavy fabrics such as felt and tweed are more suited to winter and should be avoided. Opt for something lighter such as quality straw in different styles such as gangster-inspired or Mad Men-esque headwear. If in doubt, a classic fedora is an easy option that will match with almost everything.

Suits: It almost goes without saying that tailored suiting is essential for looking perfect on race day events. Express your individuality by choosing fun patterns and quirky accessories to distinguish your race day outfit from your every day corporate look. This season bold hues especially various shades of blue from aqua to indigo, navy and turquoise are a big part of the 2013 look. Be adventurous by mixing various patterns such as check and polka dot and don’t forget to accessorise with cufflinks, ties and sunglasses. Keep in mind that pocket squares are mandatory for Spring Racing.

Shoes: Choose good quality leather shoes and ensure that they are well maintained. Avoid loafers and suede shoes as they may end up covered in mud or otherwise ruined. A lace-up style with rounded toes is a fashionable and comfortable option for race day wear.

 

Spring Carnival Racing 2013 Cheat Sheet

Spring Carnival Racing is a marvellous affair with fashion and fun but for those not involved in the world of racing, placing a winning bet can be a challenge. Arm yourself with our races cheat sheet and you’ll be betting like a race track pro in no time!

Types of wagers

There are two types of wagers to pick from when you make a bet: straight and exotic. Most people stick to straight wagers which are simple and cost effective; to make a bet, pick a horse to come in first, second or third. Exotic wagers are harder to win and require more skill in picking horses but the pay offs are higher.

For straight bets you have four options:

  • Win horse finishes first
  • Place horse finishes first or second
  • Show horse finishes in top three
  • Across the board wager horse finishes first, second or third

Types of races

There are several main types of races:

  • Maiden races are for horses that have yet to win a race
  • Claiming races where the horses are available for purchase
  • Allowance races are races with specific conditions such as the weight a horse can carry
  • Stakes which is the premier race for the best horses
  • Oaks races for 3 year old fillies only
  • Derby races which are restricted to 3 year old horses

How to place your bet

Once you have made your betting decisions it is time to go to the ticket window and place it. You’ll need to relay the following info to the teller:

  1. Name of the racetrack
  2. Number of race
  3. The amount you’re betting
  4. Type of bet
  5. Which horse or horses you’re betting on by the number

Once you’re done be sure to put your ticket in a safe place so you can come back and collect your earnings with it if you win.

Useful items

Aside from your fabulous outfit, there are some additional items you may want to take with you at the races:

  • Binoculars will help you see your favourites across the finish line
  • Race track program or race card where you can find information about the horses, jockeys and trainers
  • Daily Racing Form (DRF) contains information about the past performances of horses and other tips

How to pick the winning horse

If you’re not an expert you can still increase your odds of winning with the following tips:

  • Get as much information as you can from the race day program and listen out for tips from the experts
  • Consider what class they are racing in and if it is higher than the class they usually race
  • Surface of the race track
  • Past performance of the horse, jockey and trainer
  • Observe the horse prior to the race. Like people horses may be jittery or moody and not as prepared to race compared to a calm and focused horse.

A day at the races is always a dramatic and entertaining experience. Win or lose, you’re still able to have a great time soaking up the spring weather and enjoying the atmosphere that is the Spring Carnival.

Rihanna Diamonds World Tour

With her chart topping single Diamonds, pop star Rihanna’s Diamonds World Tour is her fifth concert tour and was launched to support her 7th studio album Unapologetic (2012). The entertainment veteran is the recipient of six Grammy Awards® and seven Billboard Music Awards and is the current record holder for being the top selling digital artist of all time.

Expect to see Rihanna don top notch outfits created by designers from Givenchy, Christian Dior and Christian Louboutin as she performs chart toppers such as Umbrella, Don’t Stop the Music, Only Girl (In the World) and Take a Bow. The Diamonds World Tour has been successful world-wide, selling out in many locations across the globe as Rihanna showcases her lush performance style and sassy attitude, wowing fans and critics alike.

Add to your VIP experience, by booking a fuss-free transfer with Encore to see this sell-out show. Don’t miss a beat and get there in style.

NRL Finals

Sydney Roosters v Manly Sea Eagles

This year’s NRL Grand Final between the Roosters and Sea Eagles promises drama, excitement and plenty of action. After their knockout victory against the Newcastle Knights over the weekend, the Roosters will roll on to face the Sea Eagles at the sell-out match at ANZ Stadium. As of yesterday it has been announced that Shayne Hayne and Ben Cummins will be the referees of the match. Furthermore, former Bulldogs fullback Luke Patten will make history by being the ex player to officiate at a match as he takes on the role of video referee for the upcoming game.

Manly coach Geoff Toovey has yet to make his final decision on star player Richie Fa’aoso after calling for an extended bench yesterday while the Rooster’s line-up remain unchanged. For the Roosters the stakes have never been higher since they have won only two of their previous ten matches with the Sea Eagles in the lead up to 2013 in spite of their solid performance this season against other teams. For fans, it is impossible to make predictions for the outcomes of the Roosters/Sea Eagles matchup but it is undoubtable that the clash between the two teams will be intense.

As the premier sporting event in Sydney, the Grand Finals have always sparked excitement across the city as thousands tune in to catch the game. Get to your match on time without hassle by making all your transport arrangements as early as possible. Our impeccable service will deliver you to and from your destination so that you can sit back, relax and enjoy the amazing atmosphere of the Grand Finals. Add the perfect touch to what has been a fantastic finals series and celebrate in style with Encore’s luxury transfer.

Keep the Spring Races going

Keep the Spring Races going with Sydney’s extravagant Fernhill Estate Picnic Race Day

If you’re still in party mode after the Melbourne Cup, don’t miss out on Sydney’s first and only country race day which will be held at the historic Fernhill Estate. Located just an hour from Sydney’s CBD, the annual Fernhill Picnic Race Day features the $25,000 Carlton Mid Cup as part of a six-race program. The glamorous event encompasses live music performances, gourmet food and fashion set amongst a gorgeous backdrop of 1850 acres of land where the early 18th century sandstone Fernhill mansion sits. Dress up and join thousands for old fashioned race day fun and enjoy champagne, stylish cocktails and canapés in the private lounges or soak up the sunshine on Fernhill’s picnic lawns.

Aside from the main attraction of the Carlton Mid Cup, there will also be a live broadcast of the final races of the Melbourne cup as well as full bookmaker facilities for enthusiasts. Fernhill Race Day is also a very family-friendly event with plenty of entertainment for the kids and an alcohol-free picnic zone. Activities for children include horse drawn cart rides, a jumping castle, petting farm, pony rides and games.

Fernhill Race Day offers a sophisticated selection of the finest international and local cuisines which include gourmet burgers and steak sandwiches from the Aussie Grill, Brazilian BBQ and Mexican. Head to the Carlton Mid Beer Garden to sample the range of refreshing beers or finish off lunch with a quality coffee and gelato. With so many options to choose from, Race Day at Fernhill is a culinary delight for everyone.

For those who are passionate about races fashion, the best dressed ladies and gentlemen will be eligible to receive a share of $2,000 worth of prizes. The experts will assess participants’ individual style and creativity in showcasing country races attire in the Fernhill Fashion Spotting Competition as well as their understanding of current trends.

Fernhill Estate Picnic Race Day starts at 10am on Saturday 9 September and finishes at 9pm.

The first race will begin at 1pm.

For tickets visit the Fernhill site .

International Fleet Review

With the International Fleet Review in full swing, today will be the last day for visitors to take the opportunity to visit the open warships and tall ships that are docked in Sydney Harbour as part of the celebration of the centenary of the Royal Australian Navy’s arrival on 4 October 2013. Over the past few days Sydney has already witnessed many spectacular naval displays including the tall ships parade, ceremonial fleet review, naval gun salutes, fireworks and military band concert but there is more yet to come.

If you still haven’t had a chance to catch the International Fleet Review in action, here is a quick guide to the remaining noteworthy events.

Monday 7 October

  • Warships are open from 8am-6pm at Fleet Base East, Garden Island and Barangaroo
  • Tall ships are open from 9.30am-5pm at Cockle Bay/Darling Harbour

Tuesday 8 October

  • Tall ships day sails 9.30am-5pm at Sydney Harbour. Visit http://www.tallshipfestival2013.com/daysails.html to book corporate packages and individual tickets for lunch and dinner cruises aboard the Tall ships.
  • 30pm-2pm Navy Memorial Service at the Cenotaph, Martin Place
  • 30pm-2pm HMAS Penguin exercises its Freedom to Entry to Mosman at Military Rd, Mosman
  • 1pm-2.30pm HMAS Parramatta exercises its Freedom to Entry at Church St, Parramatta

Wednesday 9 October

  • 30pm-2pm Combined Navies Parade takes place in Sydney’s CBD

Thursday 10 October

  • 11am-2pm Tall ships depart for Auckland from Sydney Harbour
  • 3pm-5.30pm Sailing Regatta with RAN Sailing Association takes place at Sydney Harbour

Friday 11 October

  • From 7.30am Warships depart from Sydney Harbour for Exercise Triton Centenary 13 – Part 2.