Resort Transfer Services – When to Walk Away
You can advise the UK population until blue in the face to make reservations when travelling to the French Alps, but each year tens of thousands will still rock-up to Geneva Airport and hope to strike it lucky there and then. And of course, the majority will end up on their merry way to Meribel or Les Arcs without a problem or a care in the world, aside from maybe having to pay a fair-whack more than they would have if they booked.
However, for a scattered handful every year it can be the transfer service they ‘choose’ at the airport that has the biggest and most detrimental effect on their trip as a whole. The trouble is, when there really isn’t much choice on offer at all, folk are all too often blinded by their sole aim of getting where they need to be and thus allow themselves to be snared by the first apparent driver heading their way.
Not that paranoia will get you anywhere, but there are so many dangers that come along with choosing unofficial resort transfer providers that could by rights by unlicensed, uninsured and frankly unable to guarantee your safety. As such, take heed of the following warning signs and be sure to walk away and find another should the slightest inkling of doubt creep in:
Firstly, sure there might be competition around but those that are practically shoving you into their vehicles and not giving you chance to think are usually more harm than good. It should be clear where the services are and that your business is valuable, but you should never feel pressured or rushed into a decision unless those on the other end are trying to seal the deal before you have a chance to think it over and back out. If under pressure, walk away.
Another danger sign is an undisclosed pricing policy or charges that seem to differ for every passenger. Not only is this a sign of unprofessionalism, but could also see you facing extra charges upon arrival if the driver decides to up the ticket price without telling you.
You can’t expect everyone across the French Alps to speak perfect English, but if you go with a driver that doesn’t speak a word of English and thus cannot be communicated with, you’re in for a world of trouble should things take a turn for the worst. It isn’t a case of being xenophobic or ignorant, but rather one of looking after your own best interests.
Any and every driver should have his or her credentials on clear display at all times for all passengers to see. Having to ask to see them isn’t the end of the world, but if they are either apprehensive or unwilling to produce them, chances are you’re in for a risk that really isn’t worth taking.
Rounding off, don’t hand over a penny to a questionable transfer service in the airport building until you have seen the vehicles they operate and are happy with them. You can’t always judge a book by its cover, but chances are you can identify a bus that looks like it is held together with spit and Kleenex. The best in the business offer incredible safety and comfort with luxuries like Wi-Fi on board, so be sure not to sell yourself short with a clapped out rust-bucket.
Photo sources: memecenter.com – ocr-it.com – planningevents.net – redbus2us.com – flickr.com/photos/donbrubacher