Addison Lee reports record breaking app sales in 2015

Addison Lee’s mobile app has reportedly delivered a 40% growth in bookings during 2015 compared with 2014. The company’s Christmas advertising campaign resulted in Addison Lee’s busiest ever with app bookings up 44% compared with 2014. Addison Lee’s ‘Have a surge free Christmas’ advertising campaign highlighted the company’s policy of offering fixed price fare compared to competitors who choose to substantially increase their prices at busy times. The operator is also expanding internationally, now directly providing services to clients in the USA as well as targeting countries like Russia and France. Addison Lee’s international operations have seen a 40% increase during 2015 compared with 2014. Its app which is now being developed internationally will allow London customers to book a cab in New York. Andy Boland adds, ‘We plan to win by simply being the best. We are not interested in the race to the bottom. We think our customers want a superior product at a good price. Safety and customer service are critical; they don’t want to gamble with a car that may be uninsured and poorly...

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TheChauffeur.com to highlight key protection driver techniques

Next month, TheChauffeur.com will be taking a unique look into the world of chauffeur security training, as it puts its editor through an intensive five day driver protection course. Set in the heart of Hertfordshire is a company called SpeedSkills – specialists in VIP driver and anti-hijack training. The Met Police Driving School (Hendon) formed the foundations of the protection training and it’s now being offered to the chauffeur industry, allowing them to offer additional skills to their clients. February will see the next dates in the companies calendar and our editor, Paul Gibson will spend the full five days discovering what it takes to become part of the secretive world of protection driving. Mick Croome from SpeedSkills has promised to put Paul and the other attendees through a gruelling on-track and road driving experience, which was developed from Mick’s 30 year Met Police training and time driving some of the world’s most important dignitaries. Within the week’s course, Paul will be given escape and evasion driving skills which include high speed skid control, high speed reversing, J-turns, Y-turns, driving with loss of vision, two car exercises and theory on ramming and kerning. The on-road core protection driving skills will include route planning and recce’s, contingency plans, driving in convoy, driving under escort, pick-up and set down techniques, cross decking, IED and Ballistic awareness. Every day throughout the week, Paul will be reporting back with blog videos and articles on our Facebook page, and on our website. There are a few places left on this course in February, so let this be your time to learn some valuable key experiences and develop your skills. Contact SpeedSkills on 07904 678 556 or email enquiries@speedskills.co.uk. Here is a film made with Speedskills a few years...

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TfL slammed over plans to scrap congestion charge exemption

Plans to remove the congestion charge exemption for Private Hire Drivers have been criticised by industry association, The LPHCA. Transport for London has revealed its measures which it hopes will radically ‘modernise’ the Capital’s private hire industry. The plans, which are to be put before the TfL Board for approval in March, include a formal English language requirement for drivers, guaranteed fare estimates for customers, more ‘robust’ hire and reward insurance requirements and make PH drivers pay the London Congestion Charge. The number of private hire drivers has increased from 59,000 in 2009/10 to more than 95,000 today, and has contributed to wider challenges for London such as growing traffic congestion, illegal parking and areas of poor air quality. The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “Private hire vehicles now represent over 10 per cent of vehicles entering the Congestion Charging zone on a daily basis and I have asked TfL to investigate the impact and feasibility of removing the Congestion Charging exemption for private hire vehicles with a view to cutting congestion in central London.” Steve Wright from the Licensed Private Hire Car Association commented; “We believe it would be madness to ‘congestion charge’ a mode of transport that reduces congestion and emissions, especially as the industry runs some of the cleanest vehicles in the capital and will be subject to the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) rules from 2020.’ The measures which are being taken to the TfL Board are: Operators must have the facility to provide a booking confirmation to passengers containing the photo ID and details of the vehicle being used to discharge the booking where passengers are able to receive that information TfL will no longer issue licence variations to private hire operator licenses to add a late-night or temporary event operating centre. Operators will be required to provide specified information to TfL at specified intervals including details of all drivers and vehicles registered with them. Operators must record the main destination for each booking before the journey commences Operators to retain all records for a period of 12 months TfL to control the names under which operators offer private hire services to the public Private hire drivers to be required to demonstrate a certain standard of English, with particular emphasis on ability on spoken communication – in line with the Home Office requirement for a B1 qualification when applying for citizenship. Individual licence applicants to provide National Insurance numbers to TfL A driver’s private hire vehicle licence to be considered for revocation if their private hire driver’s licence is revoked TfL will liaise with the Home Office on introducing DBS checks on private...

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All-New Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers clients class-leading comfort
Jan11

All-New Mercedes-Benz E-Class offers clients class-leading comfort

Mercedes-Benz has revealed the all-new E-Class at the Detroit Motor Show, promising incredible efficiency and increases luxury levels. The tenth-generation of the Chauffeurs favourite saloon will house a number of world-first technical innovations with an all-new experience for the infotainment and controls. A newly developed diesel engine coupled with lightweight design and record-breaking aerodynamics figures set the standards for efficiency in this segment, while new, optionally available multi-chamber air suspension ensures outstanding ride comfort and driving dynamics. The interior of the new E-Class includes two next-generation high-resolution displays, each with a wide screen diagonal of 12.3 inches – a first in this segment. Beneath their shared glass cover, the two displays visually conflate into a wide-screen cockpit that seems to be hovering in thin air, creating a central element that emphasises the horizontal orientation of the interior design. In addition, touch-sensitive control buttons (‘Touch Controls’) on the steering wheel make their first appearance in a car. Like a smartphone interface, they respond precisely to horizontal and vertical swiping movements, allowing the driver to control the entire infotainment system using finger swipes without having to take their hands off the steering wheel. In keeping with the motto “hands on the wheel, eyes on the road“, this allows achieving minimum driver distraction. High-quality materials define the interior style. They include open-pore woods, wood in a yachting look with flowing lines as a contemporary interpretation of inlaid wood and a novel metal fabric. The use of authentic materials is continued in the leather-covered doors and the beltline for selected lines. Another Mercedes hallmark clearly in evidence is the high-quality look and feel created through meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship. The new E-Class will come with a choice of two engines at market launch: the E 200 with a four-cylinder petrol engine and the E 220 d with an all-new four-cylinder diesel engine. Further model variants will be added to the range after the market launch, including the E 350 e featuring hybrid technology. The PLUG-IN HYBRID impresses with its dynamism and efficiency, allowing around 30 kilometres of purely electric and therefore locally emission-free driving. Its four-cylinder petrol engine, in conjunction with a powerful electric motor, gives it a total system output of 205 kW (279 hp) with a system torque of 600 Nm. With this set-up, the E 350 e achieves the performance of a sports car yet consumes less fuel than a small, compact-class car. The most powerful diesel variant will boast a six-cylinder engine incorporating advanced SCR exhaust technology, with an output of 190 kW (258 hp) and a peak torque of 620 Nm. Another variant to join the range...

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Chauffeur car clocking case adjourned due to admin error

Seven people charged with conspiracy to defraud have appeared at Chester Crown Court following a two year investigation into car clocking claims. PCS Events Limited, also known as PCS Chauffeurs and Professional Chauffeur Service, is alleged on or about 18 January 2006, to have ‎conspired to defraud either the hire car companies or the general public by means of altering the mileage on vehicles to show that they have travelled less than they had actually travelled, Contrary to Common Law. Due to an administrational error, the case was adjourned until the 4 March 2016, where all the co-accused will have to appear again to plead to charges dating between January 2006 and July 2013. The company operates more than 150 Mercedes-Benz vehicles in Runcorn, boasts clients such as Emirates Airlines’ and employs more than a hundred people across various locations across the country. CEO, 66 year-old John Murphy, one of the accused, started the company more than 20 years ago. Unconditional bail was extended until 4 March 2016 for all the...

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4×4 Assist Response charity in Sussex gets support from TheChauffeur.com
Dec10

4×4 Assist Response charity in Sussex gets support from TheChauffeur.com

A new charity in Sussex operating a range of Land Rover vehicles has been launched which aims to move medical staff around the county when snow or flood water hits the region. 4×4 Assist Sussex is a group of trained responders and is working with local authorities to assist in community resilience and support in adverse weather conditions and community incidents. Responders are advanced driver-trained, first-aid qualified and vehicles carry essential equipment such as tow ropes, snow shovels, blankets, water, hi-vis and all 4x4s are fitted with flashing ambers to Highway standards. Editor of TheChauffeur.com, Paul Gibson commented; “I’m happy to support 4×4 Assist by offering some spare time and drive my own Land Rover Discovery when the community needs help. We have seen incidents in Sussex where the emergency service resources are stretched to their limit, so this is a great way to relieve that pressure somewhat.” Members of the new charity drive a variety of 4x4s, but the majority own models such as Range Rover, Land Rover Discovery and, of course, the go-anywhere Defender model, allowing them to offer a swift and reliable response. In May 2015, during a mains water burst in Hailsham, the group organised the distribution of water to the sick, elderly and vulnerable in the town for 48 hours straight through at the responders’ own expense. With a cold and unpredictable winter expected, the group is urging any 4×4 owners in Sussex to visit their website at http://www.4x4assist.co.uk and join up. The charity is also looking for sponsors and partners to allow them to offer increased training levels and advanced equipment to help saves lives in Sussex. Please visit the website http://www.4x4assist.co.uk to contact the...

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