Just a few tips for customers looking for carriage rental in Arkansas. Well...anywhere for that matter. Unlike the differences between different brands of new cars ( you are sure to get a new car regardless) This same logic can not be applied to a horse and carriage service. What you see on one persons website does not mean that they all are going to live up to the same standards. See our post here on the blog "doing it right, and doing it wrong"
In addition to all that I would say my next pointer would be to make sure you actually get what you want. Unfortunately there are outfit's out there that will intentionally lead you to believe they have specific horses and/or carriage's that they in fact do not have. If you have paid a deposit that you cant get back, and your heart is set on something that they can not produce your in for a big let down.
i.e. a common bait and switch tactic I have heard happening is for a customer to request a Cinderella style carriage only to have an outfit bring you a standard Vis-a-Vis like the one pictured above. If what you wanted was a true Cinderella style ball shaped carriage and you are sure you made that clear, welcome to bait and switch. Another example would be to request a horse drawn hearse for a funeral and get a caisson instead.
So..if your heart is set on a specific style carriage make sure without question that the company you are talking to indeed actually has it. If that slightly cheaper quote you got about the carriage you want is mysteriously always unavailable then you can reasonably deduct that it's existence is little more than a deceptive marketing ploy to get you to make a deposit so you are less likely to cancel with them when you find what you want elsewhere.
The internet is an easy place to false advertise. Some outfits will actually go so far to imply that they actually have specific type vehicles they don't have by having pictures of someone else's horses and/or carriage's on their website. Keep in mind a picture on a website does not "prove" anything. The man I bought my Cinderella from had an outfit in another country using pictures off of his site and claiming to sell the carriage he makes!
I can not repeat this enough, be sure to be specific about what you really want, and make sure they really have it. This truly seems like a crazy thing to have to warn anyone about, but I have had calls from frustrated folks telling stories about this very thing happening to them.
A little about condition. Pay attention! If the carriage has paint missing in their web pictures, chances are it will be that bad or worse with a live viewing. Some of us take immaculate care of our stuff, and some others just use it, and abuse it. While the latter may be fine for a ride around town after dark, it's probably not something you want in your wedding photos. Pictures taken by a professional photographer with today's high end cameras capture great detail. Keeping both horses and carriage's highly presentable for wedding's and special events is a lot of work, a lot of work some outfits are just not willing to partake in.
If you want to be completely sure you are getting exactly what you want, and that it meets your expectations simply ask to see the carriages and/or horses in person. Do it before you lay down any of that hard earned money. No legitimate outfit should have a problem with this request though it very well might require an appointment. Keep in mind, just like with everything, normally you get what you pay for. However.. sometimes you don't, and making sure you do is going to be totally up to you. Hopefully having these tips will make that task just a little bit easier.
Lastly, rest assured that we do indeed own each and every horse and vehicle that is presented on our website. They are always detailed between events, and they are always available for your inspection here at the farm at any time. Good luck & Happy renting! and keep watching the blog because there will be more rental tips to come!