Airport shuttle service is a very lucrative business startup, but only if you know how to start an airport shuttle service. Some of the successful shuttle business owners have accounted revenue of $30,000 in the first year while jumping to $64,000 by the third year.

I will be covering all the basics about starting an airport shuttle business to help you start and run your airport transportation company successfully.

Learn everything about the day-to-day activities of an airport transportation company owner and staff, which are the target market, what is the growth potential, startup costs, legal requirements, and much more in this complete guide on starting your own transportation business in the airport shuttle vertical.

I’ll be answering all these questions and more in this blog.
Enough small talks. Let’s start the guide to start your own airport shuttle transport business.

Is an airport shuttle business right for me?

Previously it was considered that transport jobs like this were only for the people who are comfortable with a driver’s life on the road for most of the day. But this doesn’t stand true if you are working with an airport shuttle service app of your company.

The beauty of such an airport shuttle service startup is that you can start from the comfort of your home even without owning a van or bus. The drivers that own vans or buses can register to your shuttle service app just like Uber drivers do with Uber.

So anyone with or without previous experience in shuttle service can start such a transport service for airports.

What are the responsibilities of an airport shuttle Driver (& staff)?

The main job of a shuttle service is to transport people between the airport and homes, hotels, or any other location that the passengers request. These services are used by groups of family, friends or acquaintances, and single travelers.

In brief, a shuttle business owner and his/her team (on-field & off-field) has the following responsibilities:

  • Transport Passengers & Luggage
  • Manage Shuttle Schedule
  • Supervise & Dispatch Shuttle Drivers
  • Perform Routine Maintenance & Repairs on Vehicles
  • Business Bookkeeping (Digital Bookkeeping with App Solution)

Initially, many entrepreneurs work at several posts to reduce overhead expenses. This means they drive the passengers as well as perform all the administrative duties of the business.

This multi-tasking becomes much more comfortable if they have a reliable shuttle management software solution accessible on their smartphone or tablet. Such software solutions are highly scalable. So, as the business grows, vehicles are added to the fleet, and more drivers, office employees are added; the solution grows to accommodate the larger scale of working.

How does an airport shuttle business make money?

You can either charge each customer a fee for traveling from Pickup to the drop point with charges per mile or just charge a flat fee for getting to the drop location. Also important is to decide whether you would be offering your services to only large groups heading to the same destination or serving individual travelers too.

What are the steps to start an airport shuttle business?

We will see the complete step-by-step process of how to start an airport shuttle service:

steps to start an airport shuttle service

1. Research Your Competition

Abraham Lincoln once said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” Research should be the first and most crucial step for building any business. Information is the sharpened axe you would need to chop down the competition in your business.

2. Find Your Target Users

Find your target audience depending on the city in which you are planning to start your shuttle service. If your city is a tourist destination, then the majority of the people traveling to your city airport would-be tourists.

In this case, your target audience should be vacationers coming there from around the world, so you should contact local hotels, motels, and airport authorities to let them know about your services. You can also set up a commission-based trade with them in return for getting customers from their reference.

3. Complete Legal Documentation

  • Register your company as a legal entity to prevent personal liability for any future legal troubles.
  • Register for taxes with the federal and state government Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
  • Acquire Federal Business License by registering and giving proof of your company in abidance with Federal and state transportation laws.
  • Vehicle registration for inter-state transportation for commercial purposes.
  • Acquire Class B CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) for all the drivers working commercially for your company.
  • Get business insurance as compensation insurance for your employees may be a legal requirement in your state.

4. Purchase the Vehicle

If you don’t want to follow the Uber Business model of partnering up with vehicle owners. You can initially start with a single van/bus if your budget doesn’t allow you more. While purchasing a shuttle vehicle, you need to make sure that the vehicle is spacious and can hold sufficient passengers, including luggage. You can go for a whole fleet of vans/buses; this approach will get you a considerable discount from the vehicle dealer.

5. Setting Up An Office

Initially, you alone can handle the administrative work of the company from your home saving money on office space and office staff, and as your company profits and grows you can hire more staff to work on the administrative part.

6. Digitization

In today’s tech-savvy world, everyone is on the Internet. So, bringing your airport shuttle service business online is a great idea that should be executed as soon as possible. Having your own company website and airport shuttle service app where the passengers can directly book seats in your shuttle will give a drastic boost to your earnings.

Creating an airport shuttle service app as Uber did with taxi service is very profitable for the business. To build a company website and an airport shuttle service app, you would need a website development and mobile app development team.

You can initially start with a single van/bus if your budget doesn’t allow you more. While purchasing a shuttle vehicle you need to make sure that the vehicle is spacious and can hold sufficient luggage including passengers. You can go for a whole fleet of vans/buses; this approach will get you a considerable discount from the vehicle dealer.

Which are the top airport shuttle services in the world?

top airport shuttle services in the world

Some inside tips on marketing your airport shuttle startup

For all the existing airport shuttle businesses that have had stagnant revenue without any significant rise. Many travelers are slipping through your fingers just because you don’t have a digital presence on the Internet. Build and design shuttle service app and website. Also, add posters and banners inside the airport with a QR code to your app download link. People need to see your company’s name as soon as they enter or leave the airport.

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Go Start Your Airport Shuttle Business

Starting an airport shuttle service can be a very profitable business. The best marketing strategy for an airport shuttle service is to build partnerships with hotels, motels, tour operators, and travel agents and get them to spread the word-of-mouth advertisement of your company.

Mahil Jasani

Article By

Mahil Jasani

Mahil Jasani began his career as a developer and progressed to become the COO of Excellent Webworld. He uses his technical experience to tackle any challenge that arises in any department, be it development, management, operations, or finance.