Which Airlines Offer Free Chauffeur Service?

Which Airlines Offer Free Chauffeur Service?

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There are many ways that airlines try to differentiate themselves in first & business class, from the inflight product, to the ground experience. In some cases the ground experience starts before you even get to the airport, as some airlines offer complimentary chauffeur service to & from the airport. In this post I wanted to take a closer look at which airlines offer this.

Airlines offering complimentary limousine service

Some airlines offer first & business class passengers a complimentary chauffeur service, as a way of providing a differentiated experience. Unfortunately over the years we’ve seen these opportunities decrease significantly. Not only have several airlines eliminated their chauffeur service option, but even those airlines that offer it have added more restrictions.

Ultimately I can understand why some airlines struggle with justifying offering chauffeur service. While it’s of course nice to have a door-to-door experience, most premium flyers are traveling for business, and presumably they could expense transportation to & from the airport as well. Many airlines just found that they couldn’t charge a premium that justified this, so some airlines (like Virgin Atlantic) have eliminated it.

With that out of the way, let me share the airlines that currently offer chauffeur service, ranked roughly based on how readily available the service is.

Emirates first & business class chauffeur service

Dubai-based Emirates Airline offers the most readily available chauffeur service:

  • This is available at most destinations worldwide, on both arrival and departure
  • First & business class passengers can take advantage of this; however, award tickets, tickets upgraded from economy, and “basic” business class fares, aren’t eligible for this service
  • The flight must be marketed and operated by Emirates to be eligible
  • This can be reserved more than 12 hours before departure through the booking management tool
  • There are maximum distances that can be traveled, but they differ by city (it’s generally going to be around 50 miles)

At this point Emirates is the only airline that offers chauffeur service nearly globally, with few restrictions.

Emirates Airbus A380 first class

Etihad first & business class chauffeur service

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways offers chauffeur service, but only at its Abu Dhabi hub:

  • This is only available when arriving in or departing from Abu Dhabi
  • First & business class passengers can take advantage of this if they paid cash for their ticket, but passengers on award tickets or who upgraded aren’t eligible (except Etihad Guest Gold and Platinum members, who are eligible)
  • The flight must be marketed and operated by Etihad to be eligible
  • This can be reserved more than 12 hours before departure through the booking management tool
  • The chauffeur service is valid for travel to anywhere in the UAE
Etihad Boeing 787-9 business class

Turkish business class chauffeur service

Istanbul-based Turkish Airlines offers chauffeur service, but only at select airports:

  • This service isn’t available in Istanbul, but rather is available at outstations in the United States and Canada, but only if flying to or from Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Doha, Kuwait, Beirut, Tel Aviv, Tehran, Cairo, Mumbai, Delhi, Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Dacca, Nairobi, Riyadh, Dammam, Amman, Jeddah, or Bahrain
  • Business class passengers can take advantage of this if they paid cash for their ticket (in fare classes C, D, J, K, and Z), but award tickets and upgraded tickets aren’t eligible
  • The flight must be marketed and operated by Turkish to be eligible
  • This can be reserved more than 24 hours before departure through the booking management tool
  • The chauffeur service is valid for up to 35 miles of travel
  • As of now this is only valid for departure dates through September 5, 2022, though presumably this has the potential to be extended
Turkish Airlines Boeing 787-9 business class

Air China first & business class chauffeur service

Beijing-based Air China offers chauffeur service, but only at select airports in China:

  • This service is only available at select airports in China, including Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Tianjin, and Xi’an
  • First & business class passengers must be traveling to or from Europe, the Americas, Africa, or Oceania, in fare classes F, A, J, C, D, Z, or R; this means award tickets don’t qualify
  • The flight must be marketed and operated by Air China to be eligible
  • This can be reserved more than 48 hours before departure through this page
  • The distance you can travel varies by city
Air China Boeing 747-8 business class

Air France first class chauffeur service

This is a niche offering, but Air France offers chauffeur service in limited markets, including in France:

  • This service is available when departing or arriving in Paris, Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, and Nice
  • Only first class passengers are eligible for this
  • The flight must be marketed and operated by Air France to be eligible
  • This can be reserved more than six hours before departure by calling Air France

While this is the biggest market in which Air France offers chauffeur service, the airline also offers chauffeur service in select other markets, including Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates, though the terms there are even stricter.

Air France Boeing 777-300ER first class

Other airlines offer tarmac transfers

As you can see, this post is specifically about airlines offering a chauffeur service to & from the airport. This is different than some of the airlines that offer tarmac transfers between planes and lounges. For example:

Air France most consistently offers plane transfers

Bottom line

To differentiate themselves, some airlines offer first & business class passengers complimentary limousine service to & from the airports. It’s always awesome when this is offered, as it creates a seamless experience, and also provides extra value.

Unfortunately these opportunities are much more limited than in the past. Several airlines have cut this service altogether, while other airlines added fare class restrictions. At this point there aren’t any readily available award tickets that come with chauffeur service anymore.

If you’ve used an airline chauffeur service, what was your experience like? And did I miss any airlines offering this service?

Conversations (22)
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  1. yhd Guest

    I think Sri Lankan still offers this, but discovered they offer it in London for biz class pax. They use a 3rd party service and it isn't as effective as EK, but its still a free ride to the airport.

  2. Stuart Guest

    Very useful. I just upgraded to Premiere last night from a business award on AF with one of those handy check in offers. I didn't even realize they offered car service so thanks for this post! Just called the number in Paris and booked the service to Chantilly. The process is a bit clunky as you do have to call a number in France (could not find U.S.) and it takes about 10 minutes to...

    Very useful. I just upgraded to Premiere last night from a business award on AF with one of those handy check in offers. I didn't even realize they offered car service so thanks for this post! Just called the number in Paris and booked the service to Chantilly. The process is a bit clunky as you do have to call a number in France (could not find U.S.) and it takes about 10 minutes to go through all the details. Interestingly, after booking it they called me back five minutes later to say I don't get car service as I am in Business. I explained I had done a paid upgrade last night and after a hold they said, "Ah yes, we see it now, sorry!"

  3. WillyG Guest

    It’s not free but TAP (Portugal) allows you to book a car service for many destinations when making flight reservations online. Price is comparable to or cheaper than Uber and given TAP’s extremely competitive business class fares, fast connections in LIS, comfy new a321neo planes and very attentive inflight service, it’s a good deal.

  4. Creditcrunch Diamond

    And there is also the “invite only” secret top tier flyers who enjoy amongst other benefits, chauffeur car services worldwide irrespective of cabin being flown.

  5. Adam Guest

    ANA offer tarmac transfer between domestic terminal and international terminal in Haneda Airport.

  6. RichW New Member

    Turkish Airlines is currently (as of 24 May 2022) offering chauffer service only until September 2022. According to their website (https://www.turkishairlines.com/en-us/flights/fly-different/business-class/exclusive-drive/), their chauffer service, Exclusive Drive, is free of charge and valid for the eligible business class tickets with departure date prior to 5 September 2022.

  7. nunzio Guest

    Air France First Class passengers in Paris can reserve Chauffeur service too.
    Turkish Airlines offers Chauffeur service only to some selected airports in Usa and Canada only if flights originating from selected countries of Middle east and sub Indian area

  8. Roberto Guest

    AirFrance offers chauffeur service from :

    Paris*, Bordeaux*, Lyon*, Marseille*, Nice*, your personal Hertz DriveU driver will pick you up in a premium vehicle and drive you to the airport. You can also take advantage of this service upon arrival of your La Première cabin flight at Paris-Charles de Gaulle or your connecting flight to one of the cities listed. The Hertz DriveU service is complimentary* to our La Première guests. Book your driver by...

    AirFrance offers chauffeur service from :

    Paris*, Bordeaux*, Lyon*, Marseille*, Nice*, your personal Hertz DriveU driver will pick you up in a premium vehicle and drive you to the airport. You can also take advantage of this service upon arrival of your La Première cabin flight at Paris-Charles de Gaulle or your connecting flight to one of the cities listed. The Hertz DriveU service is complimentary* to our La Première guests. Book your driver by telephone, up to 6 hours before the transfer, by calling your exclusive La Première number

    Source:https://wwws.airfrance.nl/information/prepare/voyager-avec-la-premiere

    If booking La Première tickets departure ex-Amsterdam,
    One will be offered complimentary access to the separate VIP private terminal
    https://www.schiphol.nl/en/page/schiphol-vip-service/

    And be driven to the plane for the flight to/from CDG

    https://insideflyer.nl/vip-centre-op-schiphol-voor-air-france-la-premiere-passagiers/

    AF F-tickets were prepandemic priced around €5000 YMV

  9. N.C. Guest

    You forgot Brussels Airlines :)
    https://onemileatatime.com/brussels-airlines-chauffeur-service/

  10. TravelinWilly Guest

    “I believe Air France offers a similar service when departing Geneva, but I don’t believe there’s a webpage for that.”

    AF does indeed offer it in Geneva, but ONLY for tickets purchased in Switzerland.

  11. Christian Guest

    Since this is a points and miles blog that specializes in luxury, you could just say that zero airlines offer limo pick up or drop off for award tickets.

    1. Stuart Guest

      Not entirely true. I am on an award ticket in business class with AF tonight. I paid the promotional check in price to upgrade to Premiere ($1500). Thanks to this post (I didn't even know about the car service with AF) I called the France Premiere number and it was booked in a few minutes. No one questioned me that my base ticket was an award booking. So it sorta works with AF. Not sure...

      Not entirely true. I am on an award ticket in business class with AF tonight. I paid the promotional check in price to upgrade to Premiere ($1500). Thanks to this post (I didn't even know about the car service with AF) I called the France Premiere number and it was booked in a few minutes. No one questioned me that my base ticket was an award booking. So it sorta works with AF. Not sure though if you are on a traditional Premiere award (which few who read this blog I imagine ever book anyway given the restrictions).

  12. Anton Guest

    Lufthansa / SWISS offers limousine service for First Class passengers at select outstations.

    Ie. CPH-FRA-HND will quality for a limousine service in Denmark to CPH.

  13. NathanJ Gold

    We were one of the last booked flights to utilise the Etihad chauffeur from Zurich when we flew in their First Apartment. Was great, although my father-in-law still had to drive the four of us a long way from Austria to within the 80k limit that they imposed from Kloten!

  14. Daniel from Finland Guest

    Turkish requires that you fly between certain destinations ans USA&CAN, whereupon you get the chauffeur in North America only: "Only our passengers who are travelling between our direct flight points in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Doha, Kuwait, Beirut, Tel Aviv, Tehran, Cairo, Bombay, Delhi, Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Dacca, Nairobi, Riyadh, Dammam, Amman, Jeddah and Bahrain, and in the USA and in Canada can benefit from this service."

    So JFK-IST will not qualify, and neither will JFK-IST-FCO,...

    Turkish requires that you fly between certain destinations ans USA&CAN, whereupon you get the chauffeur in North America only: "Only our passengers who are travelling between our direct flight points in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Doha, Kuwait, Beirut, Tel Aviv, Tehran, Cairo, Bombay, Delhi, Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Dacca, Nairobi, Riyadh, Dammam, Amman, Jeddah and Bahrain, and in the USA and in Canada can benefit from this service."

    So JFK-IST will not qualify, and neither will JFK-IST-FCO, for instance.

  15. RCB Guest

    I used the Etihad service once when departing from Dulles to Abu Dhabi, and it was definitely nice and saved us $150, but it certainly wasn't a make or break thing for us, so I understand why it was an easy cost to cut out for the airlines. Almost no one is going to say "Well, I was going to fly first/business class on X airline but now I'll just cancel my trip because they don't offer a free chauffer anymore."

  16. 305 Guest

    I know it’s not “chauffeur service” or anything close, but Concierge Key golf carts in the terminal are pretty great. If you’re at the Flagship lounge at MIA and your flight is departing from the low number D gates, it’s clutch. Same for getting to dreaded E gates from there

  17. Sammy Guest

    I believe China eastern also offers chauffeur services in China and in the USA for first and business class paid fares, I had used it in the past. Although it can be difficult to spot on their web page because it's a horrible website and I had to call in to order it.

    1. Justin Guest

      Yeah, they definitely used to for JFK as I've used it too. Not sure what's going on nowadays though. It was really not advertised and you had to really know to request it. They sent a standard NY area car-service when I used it. Saved us about $150-$200 which is what we would normally pay for a car to JFK, so it was actually pretty good.

    2. Kiwi Guest

      I used it regularly in SFO as well always ended up with a really nice car

  18. Khatl Gold

    Virgin also offers chauffeur service... but where it was previously complimentary for upper class paid tickets, it now costs points or money

  19. Bruno Guest

    Air France also offers it to La Premiere customers in Paris and some other French cities.
    It’s a partnership with Hertz DriveU, so not fully managed by the airline, but included in the La Premiere ticket.

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The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

TravelinWilly Guest

“I believe Air France offers a similar service when departing Geneva, but I don’t believe there’s a webpage for that.” AF does indeed offer it in Geneva, but ONLY for tickets purchased in Switzerland.

2
N.C. Guest

You forgot Brussels Airlines :) https://onemileatatime.com/brussels-airlines-chauffeur-service/

1
Christian Guest

Since this is a points and miles blog that specializes in luxury, you could just say that zero airlines offer limo pick up or drop off for award tickets.

1
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