How to Start a Limousine Business in Florida

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You can start a limousine business in Florida once you get required permits and equipment. Each county issues licenses for stretch sedans (at least 42 inches beyond standard), super-stretch (a luxury car at least 120 inches beyond standard), ancient (a luxury car manufactured before 1945), antique (a luxury car manufactured in 1945 and more than 20 years old) or collectible limos (a luxury car manufactured with engine and parts at least 20 years old).

  • Develop a business plan that includes income and expense estimates. You must select a company name (for example, ABC Limo LLC) and principal place of business. The Small Business Administration (sba.gov) and SCORE (score.org) provide free help to small businesses.

  • Obtain limos that satisfy your county's requirements, including length. You need a separate limo license for each type of service, such as stretch and super-stretch.

  • Complete a chauffeur application, which allows the county to run a criminal-background check. Each driver must have a valid Florida commercial driver's license with passenger endorsement. Since chauffeur licenses no longer are issued, you need a Class B commercial license to drive more than 10 people at a time.

  • Obtain personal references and credit references to demonstrate your company's financial trustworthiness, such as from a bank. You also must submit fingerprints and be photographed at a police department.

  • Implement a marketing plan, and build your reputation. For example, you can create a website that displays your contact information and photos of your limos. Network with professional and civic groups to offer transportation for events.

Tips & Warnings

  • You must have legal work authorization or be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Florida law prohibits all limo services from selling alcohol.
  • Select an appropriate business structure (general partnership, limited liability company, corporation). If you file as a corporation or partnership, all officers, directors, or shareholders must complete fingerprint checks.

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