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Driving Miss Daisy Finalist in 2019 Silver Travel-i Product Awards

Driving Miss Daisy® are proud to announce that they are finalists in the Silver Travel Advisor’s Silver-i Product Award 2019 category. This award recognises the company that has delivered outstandingly for the mature traveller since 1 May 2018 in terms of an idea, initiative or innovation in its Product Development.

Driving Miss Daisy® offers a safe, friendly and reliable driving and companion service for anyone who is unable to drive but wishes to remain independent. They identified an opportunity to develop a service aimed at supporting those who need additional support to reach their UK departure point or UK holiday destination in complete peace of mind and the Assisted Home to Holiday Transfer Service was developed. The service effectively bridges the gap between the home and the holiday departure point/ UK holiday destination for those who do not have any other way of reaching their destination.

The Home to Holiday Assisted Transfer provides a personalised service with additional assistance and wheelchair accessible vehicles if required. With a number of key benefits making up the service, the core essence is that a client’s holiday starts in their front room and each person is treated as if they were ‘your own parent’, right through to arriving back home again.

John Overdijking, of Alliances & Regional Franchise Development, said, “As the only UK’s Driving and Companion service we looked at how we could offer a unique assisted transfer service that would enable those who perhaps would otherwise not go on holiday to enjoy all the benefits of travel without any concern over their safety, and add to the enjoyment of the holiday. We eliminated the barriers for a huge and growing sector of the population and innovated our existing service into a specific Assisted Home to Holiday Transfer Service.

‘Judged by travel industry experts, there were 15 entries from national companies, and we are one of 6 finalists.”

The awards will be presented at the Silver Travel Awards on Wednesday 26 June 2019 at BAFTA in London’s Piccadilly, hosted by TV legend Dame Esther Rantzen.

ITN film Driving Miss Daisy

ITN Productions film Driving Miss Daisy®

This short video gives a wonderful introduction and insight to the operation and services of Driving Miss Daisy®. From receiving the initial phone call from a client to taking a client shopping, it summarises and encompasses what we do and the importance our service makes to people’s lives.

 

 
The filming is a result of the British Franchise Association (of which we are a member) and ITN Productions collaborating on a news style programme, ‘Franchising the Next Generation’ anchored by Natasha Kaplinsky. The programme will be officially launched at the bfa Annual Conference on the 27th June.

Driving Miss Daisy®'s wedding service

Driving Miss Daisy®’s Wedding Service

Driving Miss Daisy®’s wedding service ensures everyone attends the special event. A wedding is a time for togetherness and special memories. If there is a friend or relative that needs assistance getting there, we can help. Often this is an elderly relative, who would love to go, but they may have mobility issues. For example, they may be in a wheelchair or require transport from a care home. Likewise, they often want to leave after the wedding breakfast but before the evening music starts. Our service is tailored to their needs; and it doesn’t need a guest to be a designated driver.

We can also stay with relatives at the event to assist and help if required. This allows everyone to enjoy the event and not be concerned about the relative being potentially left on their own.
Our service helps the families and wedding organisers, but it especially works for the people we drive. No stress, they can leave when they want to go rather than relying on another member of the wedding party, and have company if they want it.

Driving Miss Daisy®'s wedding service

Driving Miss Daisy®’s wedding service

 

Driving Miss Daisy’s Wedding Service from Driving Miss Daisy UK .

What attracted you to Driving Miss Daisy®?

Driving Miss Daisy Daisy® Bath is one of our first franchises to launch in 2019 and is run by husband and wife team Sarah and Jo Webb. Sarah answered some questions on their reasons behind opening the franchise, their experiences and what’s worked well for them so far.

What attracted you to Driving Miss Daisy®?

We were both attracted to Driving Miss Daisy® as we realized it was a service we would like for our parents and children. We have both run our own business for many years and there was something about Driving Miss Daisy® that chimed with our feelings of wanting to make a real difference in our communities, particularly in challenging times when families are juggling the demands of caring for both children and elderly relatives whilst working, especially if they do not live close by.

Has there been anything unexpected that’s surprised you?

Where do I start?
We were told by other franchisees that we would become integral to the lives of our clients. Whilst we understood this conceptually it wasn’t until we started, that we truly began to understand the power of the service and how close we would become to our clients in many instances becoming firm friends. We get as excited as they do when we are taking them for outings or on holidays.

What’s your experience been like so far?

Our experience so far has been amazing, because of family circumstances last year we had to delay the launch of our business and the team at Driving Miss Daisy® could not have been more helpful and supportive. When we finally agreed a date to launch, everything was in place to get the wheels turning and the support from the Client Services Centre, adjacent franchisees, our designated mentor and from the Driving Miss Daisy® management was exemplary and ensured that we moved into operational status with the least amount of fuss and bother.

What’s worked well in promoting Driving Miss Daisy® in your area?

We have spoken to lots of social groups and organizations in our area and without exception they have all told us that they are glad we are here, as specialist transportation is a massive problem for all of them. We have pushed how truly flexible we can be and how clients must use us like family. We recently attended the Bath and NE Somerset Dementia Action Alliance – Dementia Friendly Conference at the Guildhall in Bath on the 7th February. The reception we got was beyond our wildest dreams and we are now running to catch up as orders have flooded in from a range of organizations who support people and families of people living with dementia. We are already looking to expand our fleet with more wheelchair accessible vehicles and companion drivers.

What would you say to someone thinking about opening a Driving Miss Daisy® franchise?

They have to realize that we are definitely not a taxi service. Whilst the vehicle and transportation is at the centre of our activities we also provide companion only services, twilight support to individuals and families and an integrated holiday service with partner organizations such as Mind For You, Disabled Holidays, Enable Holidays, and Limitless Travel to name but a few. To those starting out I would say, spend time really getting to understand the value of our service to our clients as it takes a while for this to sink in. Go out of your way for people, then they soon realize we are not taxis. The courtesy phone call the night before is essential for you and them. If family book you for a relative, give them a follow up email or call to tell them how well the trip went and thank them for their business.

Anything else you’d like to say about being a Driving Miss Daisy® Franchisee?

Our biggest tip is to follow what you are told in training. The training is excellent and based upon over 100,000 journeys so listen and implement because it works and it works well.