There is no more iconic wedding vehicle than a white limousine. But what makes this type of hired car so special, and what can brides and grooms expect when choosing a white stretch for their special day?
Why Is White Special?
Whenever anyone sees a white limo, they assume it's part of a wedding entourage, and in large part, that assumption is accurate. In fact, of couples who choose to hire transportation for their wedding day, 85 percent opt for some variety of white limo, most frequently the classic Lincoln design. Black limousines are often more associated with proms, hotel transports, business escorts, or other special vehicle needs, while white is almost exclusively reserved for weddings. That symbol is very important to many couples - only once in their lives will they ride in white luxury, making it a critical part of their wedding transportation plans.
Black vs. White Limousine
In reality, however, there are not many differences between white and black limousines. All the vehicles offer the same extravagant amenities, such as:
- Privacy features including dividers and tinted windows
- Entertainment options such as flat screen televisions and DVD or CD players
- Ice bins, wet bars, champagne, and hors d'oeuvres depending on the rental company and transportation package
- Mood lighting and sun roofs
- Plush leather interiors - usually gray, charcoal, or beige for white vehicles
- Choice of vehicle styles, including regular and stretch limousines, Rolls Royce models, and expanded SUVs
With all of these identical amenities, why, then, should a couple bother with a white limousine?
Why Bother with White
Of course, the exclusivity of white limos and their heavy association with weddings makes them the traditional choice for many couples. At the same time, there are some additional considerations that may make a couple opt for white instead of black.
- A white vehicle can be more easily decorated with flowers or streamers to match the wedding colors.
- When set against a church or lush outdoor background, a white vehicle will be more photogenic (if the couple opts for pictures of the car arriving or waiting to whisk the couple away).
- If meant to convey the bride, the white of the car provides a coordinated look with the white of her gown.
- If the bride plans to wear a colored wedding dress, the white car provides a beautiful contrast for photographs.
These reasons are purely aesthetic, however, and there are some highly practical reasons for couples to reconsider choosing a white limo for their wedding day.
Problems with White Transportation
Even though the cars may seem identical in everything except color, there are some potential problems with white wedding vehicles.
- If the weather is rainy or the roads muddy, a white limousine will show dirt and grime much more quickly than a darker car.
- If the bride will be photographed entering or leaving the car, or simply posing next to it, the white exterior may blur the details of her gown and the clarity of the image will not be as nice.
- Because limousine rental companies have greater demand for black vehicles and most white cars are hired on Fridays or Saturdays, further restricting their availability, a white limo may be more expensive than a similar model of black limousine.
In the end, the sentimentality of a white vehicle may actually be a deterrent for some couples, especially if they prefer a more unique wedding without the cliché image of a bridal-white car.
Hiring a White Limo
Couples who do decide to hire a white wedding limousine need to choose the transportation company carefully. First, always ask to see the exact vehicle before signing a rental agreement: if the company does not have much call for white cars, they may only have older models available. Because the vast majority of white limousines are rented for Friday or Saturday weddings, couples should make their reservations as early as possible, particularly for busy wedding months such as April, May, June, and December. With either white or black vehicles, it is also important to thoroughly examine the terms of the rental agreement, payment requirements, and gratuity procedures before agreeing to a contract.
Other White Options
If the desired rental company does not have a white limo available for the right day or times, or if a couple wants a more unique transportation option, there are other white vehicles they can choose that are less predictable than a limousine but still offer that white bridal flair, such as:
- A white horse-drawn carriage or sleigh
- A white luxury car, such as a Rolls Royce or Mercedes
- A white sports car or exotic vehicle
Whatever their decision, the continuity of a white vehicle with the pure ideals of a white wedding is sure to create a memorable tableau for a unique event.
The classic white limousine continues to be the most popular choice for wedding transportation, but before choosing a white stretch or traditional limousine, couples need to consider whether they are interested in the color because it is expected or because it is truly what they want. By carefully considering their options, the couple ensures a wedding that will be long remembered, regardless of how they arrived and left.