OT: Shuttle Service By Auto Dealer

The dealer has never provided "loaners" while the vehicle was being serviced, but now they provide a shuttle service that will take you home while the car is being serviced, and then pick you up when the job is done.
What are your experiences? Do they simply add the cost of shuttle onto the service bill, or do you pay the driver? Do you tip? If so, how much? 20% or what? I'd like to have a little info in advance so as not to sound too ignorant when I drop off the car. -- Thanks, Murriel
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it's a free service absorbed by the dealer. Quit being such a cynic.
s

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S. Barker wrote:

itemized. :)
But, it is a nice touch when they work it well...here, I just go up to the showroom and get the salesman to run me home...then they'll either bring it out and we'll run their guy back to town or the wife and I will just wait 'til we're both on the way to town and drop one or the other off for it...small is good! <vbg>
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dpb wrote:

Where I am, all dealers have shuttle service(usually van) or they give round trip tickets for public transit.
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Tony Hwang wrote: ...

What's that?
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There was absolutely nothing cynical in the message you responded to.

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He acted like they couldn't possibly be offering the service free as a courtesy to their customers.
s

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No, he didn't. You interpreted his words incorrectly. Read them again.
He's also asking the question in the wrong place, since each dealer is different, and nobody here can answer his question unless he gives the name of the dealership and someone else knows the place.
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re: it's a free service absorbed by the dealer
What's your definition of "absorbed"?
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it's a service that is paid for in decreased profits. They don't charge more for service because they have a shuttle service.
steve
re: it's a free service absorbed by the dealer
What's your definition of "absorbed"?
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wrote:

The expense may be borne by the entire business, so it's not just service customers who pay for it. It's spread over the costs of everything... Just like any other form of advertising or promotion.
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On Mar 17, 5:16pm, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

My point exactly.
Just like the coffee in the waiting room and the free bottle of touch up paint they give away every now and then. We're paying for it one way or another, and that's not be cynical, unless cynical is spelt "r- e-a-l-i-s-t-i-c".
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

The local shop here did car washes as "perk" by sending them across the street to the body shop (same dealership). Then they went to looking at each department manager's bottom line. "Free" washes stopped when the body shop started billing the repair shop...
The howls from customers forced a retreat although I've noticed there's now a sign at the shop customer counter that free washes aren't the practice any more. It seems to help to have been customer "since forver" (starting in the 20s w/ grandparents) as they're still doing ours... :)
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S. Barker wrote:

That's a good definition, but I'd be willing to bet the costs are folded into their margin calculations in setting shop rates... :)
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On Mar 17, 10:42am, snipped-for-privacy@home.home (Jack) wrote:

The service is "free" in that they don't charge you *directly* for the ride.
Obviously, gas and salary, just like the maintenance of a loaner, is part of their business model and is covered in their hourly labor rate or absorbed via warranty charge backs to manufacturer or whatever. Just like you don't "pay" the guy in orange vest to take your shopping cart back into the grocery store but it's certainly covered in what you pay for products.
As far as tipping the guy, that's up to you. I'll typically throw 'em a couple of bucks with a "Grab yourself a cup of coffee" comment or something like that. You never know who these guys are...a millionaire retiree who doesn't want to sit home and fade away or a minimum wage earner trying to support 3 kids. Chat him up, feel him out and decide from there.
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As far as tipping the guy, that's up to you. I'll typically throw 'em a couple of bucks with a "Grab yourself a cup of coffee" comment or something like that. You never know who these guys are...a millionaire retiree who doesn't want to sit home and fade away or a minimum wage earner trying to support 3 kids. Chat him up, feel him out and decide from there.
++++++++++++++++++++++++
Our local dealer uses the Old Farts that would be at the coffee shop anyway because that is what they did for the past 50 years or so before they retired. They appreciate a couple of bucks.
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wrote:

Maybe I shouldn't comment. I don't object to "Grab yourself a cup of coffee" and I realize that the rest isn't meant to be spoken, but "throw 'em a couple bucks" sounds so patronizing. Like you're throwing dog biscuits to the dog. Well, even though it isn't meant to be spoken, I think the description can affect the way it's done. How about "give him a couple bucks".

If I were the customer I'd rather have a set amount I tipped than to chat someone up just to figure out how much to give. I've asked lots of personal questions to people I just met, so that's not my problem, but the reason I'm willing to do that is that they can tell I have no vested interest in their answers. Not even the difference between 2 dollars and 3 dollars.
The only difference would be if he was hanging around not getting paid, just to be available to earn money this way, or if he is hourly, or if he gets paid by the job (like a mechanic might). I don't believe anyone just hangs around. That leaves b and c. I don't know if mechanics at dealers work on a per job basis or not. But if it takes him 5 minutes each way, and I'm sure it takes more, 2 dollars for 10 minutes is still too low to pay a mechanic. And anyone lower paid than a mechanic gets paid by the hour. So I'd be very surprised if a guy who drives people home isn't getting his regular salary during that time.
Bottom line: OP, stop guessing and ask the manager if the people who drive you home are getting their regular salary during that time, or if you should tip them and if the latter, how much.

OK so apparently at least one dealer doesn't, it seems, pay them hourly, maybe. If they are not being paid by the dealer, they should get paid by the customer.
I used to live in the city and there were lots of 10 year-old boys hanging out at the small local supermarket, and it took me more than a year to realize they weren't being paid by the store, even the ones inside who were bagging. (I didn't think the ones outside who offered to carry the groceries home were paid by the store.) So for more than a year, I never tipped any of them a dime, and not one of them ever said a thing or looked at me funny. I guess that would have been a violation of their pride, for some reason.
It was a n'hood with a college and a lot of college and grad students, and , A little while after I figured it out, I realized that all the other students from the suburbs might be as oblivious to the kids' situation as I was. So I went to the supermarket manager and asked him not to pay them, but just to put up a sign that said he didn't pay them and that they work for tips. The guy said, We don't want them here anyhow. What a lie. Without those kids it would have either had to hire baggers, or it would have taken almost twice as long for each customer to check out, the lines would have been much longer, and people would have gone to the bodega less than 2 blocks away or the other bigger supermarket 3 long blocks away (people had shopping carts anyhow.). I would have used my car to go shopping rather than wait in long lines. So I understand the problem, and think people should be paid.
OP find out what the situation is from the manager.

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