In summer 2018, we helped Al Dahra achieve one of these feats. The purpose of this project was to aid our client in hosting their international farm owners to inspect their investments.
Air transportation options
Based out of the Middle East, our client was hoping to coordinate travel for the investors to their farms located in Arizona, California and Washington. Al Dahra was very particular about the types of aircrafts, so we chose to provide pristine, high-quality Gulfstream GIV and GV planes.
Since the investors of Al Dahra are wealthy businessmen from the Middle East, they’re accustomed to luxury transportation.
“It was really important to our clients for the owners to feel like VIPs, so we ensured that everything in the transportation and accommodation options we proposed were extremely high-standard.”
We went so far as to arrange for our clients to personally inspect the modes of transportation they would be utilizing for this trip. It was important that everything meet their extravagant taste.
Ground transportation options
Instead of opting for luxury buses, we chose four-wheel-drive Cadillac Escalades, which were four times the cost but proved an excellent choice for navigating the rural terrain. We also decided to add a fourth SUV on the first tour day to ensure an extra level of comfort for everyone. We worked quickly immediately upon request to make arrangements for a fourth Escalade to be included on each leg of this trip.
We needed to have the SUVs relocate from major cities that were in the vicinity of our pickup spots, so some of these vehicles drove four hours to their destinations.
A sudden change of plans
Another interesting challenge we faced was regarding the aircrafts. Each requires a pilot and a copilot, and coincidentally, the night before the scheduled trip, one of the copilots was injured in a motorcycle accident and unable to fly. There wasn’t enough time to get a replacement, so we had to get a fill-in aircraft from another company to take over one of the planes for that leg.
For the rest of the trip, we gave the client a few options: We could continue with the original aircraft at a slightly higher fee, or we could swap the aircraft for another one entirely. However, if they decided to go with the latter option, the new aircraft would not have been a Gulfstream GIV, and it wouldn’t have been up to their original standards. Ultimately, the client decided to keep the same scheduled aircraft for the remainder of the trip.
We provided extra catering and amenities to make up for the inconvenience. What we learned from this experience was that some aircraft carriers will provide trip accident insurance included in the standard fare, and some will not. Carriers that provide this insurance policy will cover the difference in cost should something like this happen. Even if the carrier doesn’t offer it with the standard fare, it’s an available option, and that’s something that should always be communicated to the client.
Finally, we consulted our client in potential accommodations for their guests. We recommended they stay at the Phoenician Resort in Arizona and the Montage Hotel in Beverly Hills. These upscale, 5-star hotels matched the expectations and quality of this trip. The client and their guests spent three nights at the Phoenician, booking 17 rooms: one executive suite and 16 deluxe rooms. They also spent one night at the Montage, booking 15 rooms: one executive suite and 14 deluxe rooms.
We were able to get the hotels to provide transportation to and from the airport as a value-add for booking there. Our client was delighted at the extra mile we went to make sure they were getting as much value as possible with the options we gave them.
The client’s initial budget was $250,000, but we ended up delivering a high-quality transportation process for $200,000. We not only saved the client money, we ensured a phenomenal guest experience from start to finish.