How to Choose the Right Vehicle for Transportation Expansion

 

How do you choose what is the right sized vehicle for the next addition to your fleet or transportation program? 

This is a crucial decision many operators face and have to weigh consideration factors on a number of different levels when evaluating their current fleet.  Lots of variables come into play, and the wrong decision can carry consequences for years while the right choice has the potential to increase market share, profit margins and overall success of the company or division. 

 

Some things to consider when making your next decision:

-Will the new vehicle require additional licensing or endorsements for our drivers?  If you’re considering a bigger bus due to increased demand, but the vehicles currently being operated don’t require a special license to drive, several items must be considered.  Usually a CDL driver will qualify for a higher rate of pay, and you might be expected to cover the cost of taking the test for current drivers on staff to allow them to operate a new bus.  The operating costs of a 30 passenger will be less than two 15 passenger vehicles however, and you can break into a different segment for larger groups with a bigger bus.

-Insurance requirements are more expensive for larger buses than smaller buses. 

-Is there a tangible need for something different than what you’re currently offering, or would an additional vehicle of the same kind already in service expand your current operating ability.  Buying another 15 passenger to add to your existing fleet of 3 vs. buying a 35 passenger to break into a different part of the market entirely would be one example of this scenario. 

 

-How often will the bus be operating at full capacity?  If an assisted living home needs to pick up an additional piece of equipment, but their current 20 passenger bus never travels at more than half capacity, it would probably make sense to downsize to a smaller unit.  Whereas if their bus is near capacity all the time, but they need an additional unit for doctors appointments while the bus is on trips/outings, then perhaps one of our MV-1 would be something to consider.