Hospitality-first is the prevailing mindset at EcoStyle Chauffeured Transportation, of Raleigh, NC, which offers best-in-class chauffeured transportation. While the company’s main facility is in Raleigh, it serves clients throughout the United States and beyond.
“We offer a wide array of transportation services, with our sedans all the way up to vans, mini-coaches and motor-coaches,” said Vice President and Co-founder Scott Tyler, during a recent interview with Busline Magazine. “We are heavily into athletic charters, taking groups to stadiums across the United States, as well as transporting sports teams. We also specialize in luxury corporate transportation. We do a lot of corporate group movements for various companies throughout North Carolina. During the past three years, our primary focus has been on the motorcoach side of the business.”
In addition to serving the state of North Carolina, EcoStyle offers professional, reliable, long-distance transportation. “We take a lot of tours out west to such locations as Las Vegas, NV. We travel up and down the East Coast from Florida to Maine,” Tyler said. “We also take trips to Canada. If a client wants to go somewhere, and it makes sense, we will take him/her wherever he/she wants to travel.
We work with a lot of high-end tour companies. They love using our equipment and our staff. They book us for tours throughout the United States. It is pretty cool to look at the GPS and see our coaches all over the U.S. There are really no limitations to where we can go.”
In addition to sporting events, the company’s group transportation offerings include weddings, church groups, birthday celebrations, school transportation, brewery and wine tours, and more.
EcoStyle’s executive chauffeur services include transporting business clients to meetings and events, as well as a shuttle and private avi-
The company also offers airport travel services. EcoStyle chauffeurs will greet clients inside the airport and escort them to their vehicle. Drivers will also take care of transporting a client’s luggage in and out of the vehicle.
“We hold our drivers to a higher standard. We want them to go ‘above and beyond,’” Tyler said. “Our chauffeurs don’t just sit behind the wheel. We require them to drive safely, but also to assist with bags or anything else our clients need. Going ‘above and beyond’ is what keeps our clients coming back. We have a hospitality-first mindset here. Our clients love how our chauffeurs take care of them.” Because of its commitment to above and beyond service, EcoStyle goes to great lengths to make sure it hires drivers who are capable of having that hospitality-first mindset.
“As part of the interview process for a chauffeur job, we let the candidate know we are a little bit different, making sure he/she has a service-first mindset,” Tyler said. “Finding qualified, quality drivers is a challenge. We are picky, but when we find a great operator, he/she tends to stay. Our turnover is extremely low.
“We have a great family mindset here and the chauffeurs appreciate what we do for them. Likewise, we appreciate what they mean to EcoStyle. We have a great relationship with all of our drivers. Once they come on board, we treat them like family and they rarely leave.”
For driver training, EcoStyle uses a comprehensive web-based program.
“We have traditionally used the driver training program on the chauffeured car side of the company, and now have expanded to using it to train bus drivers, as well,” Tyler said. “It is a training program that emphasizes service first, and has all the steps for drivers to develop a five-star hospitality mentality.
“We can train people to drive sedans and SUVs, but for buses,
prior experience is required.” In addition to motorcoaches, EcoStyle’s fleet consists of sedans, SUVs, vans and mini-buses. In focusing more on the motorcoach side of the business, in the past year and a half, EcoStyle has taken delivery of 13 Van Hool TX45s from ABC Companies, the exclusive North American distributor of Van Hool coaches.
“When we took delivery of our first Van Hool from ABC, which was in 2018, we absolutely fell in love with the coach,” Tyler said.
“We visited the facility and fell in love with the people at ABC. After visiting and talking with ABC, we knew it was the company we wanted to partner with moving forward. It has proven to be the right decision, as ABC has been a great partner for us throughout the past year and a half. Our TX45s are all black coaches. “Our sports team passengers love them. And not only sports clients, our corporate customers who are used to a luxury product love them as well. The Van Hools are great looking coaches with plenty of legroom and many amenities. They have the curb appeal we are looking for, and they really mesh well with our overall business, and the image we are trying to convey.”
Amenities on the Van Hool coaches include Wi-Fi and leather-appointed interiors.
“We also have HDMI plugs throughout the Van Hools to allow passengers to hook up laptops, iPhones, etc.,” Tyler said. “The buses have large, full-modified parcel racks that include 26-inch monitors throughout the vehicle, which people love. It was a big selling point for us to have the big TVs throughout. I really think it makes the interior of the vehicles stand out.
“We believe in the partnership, service and products ABC provides. If anybody is thinking about purchasing a Van Hool, you can’t go wrong.”
EcoStyle’s other luxury vehicles are also outfitted with leather appointed seats, Wi-Fi, power outlets, HDMI plugs and TVs. “We have luxury mini-coaches that are, in my mind, the top of the line on the market. Every fit and finish is done perfectly. They are beautiful buses,” Tyler said. “We take luxury to another level, from our sedans all the way up to our motorcoaches.”
EcoStyle’s leadership and employees are proud of the company’s luxury fleet and go “above and beyond” to make sure they look immaculate curbside and on the road. Making sure they are well-maintained is also a high priority.
“We take tremendous pride in having our vehicles meticulously detailed, clean, smelling good and ready to go for every trip,” Tyler said. “The way we look at it, we are only as good as our last trip. A dirty bus that doesn’t have curb appeal can start a trip off on a wrong note. We make sure that doesn’t happen.
“We have a great set of bus operators who take pride in their equipment. They wash vehicles in-between trips, and when they are on the road, as well. They make sure our high standards are maintained, even when they are out on the road for a three-day tour or a 20-day trip. “In competing with other transportation companies in the area, we invite people to come and look at our coaches to see how they are maintained. This is a big selling point for us.”
FROM THE DIAMOND TO THE BUS
EcoStyle’s headquarters is in what is called the Research Triangle, so named because of three major universities in the area. In addition to North Carolina State University in Raleigh, which is also the state capital, Duke University is located in Durham, next door to Raleigh, and the University of North Carolina’s main campus is in nearby Chapel Hill. The current population of the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Combined Statistical Area (CSA) is estimated at 2.03 million people.
Tyler and his co-founder, Brock Pittman, who is also the company’s president, met in 2008 and became best friends. Pittman founded Royal Parking, a valet parking business, in October 2000.
In 2011, Tyler approached Pittman about starting a transportation business, and thus EcoStyle was born. “We evaluated the idea of starting the company, and he was all in,” Tyler said. “So, we started in 2011 and have built the business to where it is today.” Originally, Tyler and Pittman operated the company out of a five-star hotel and spa in the Raleigh suburb of Cary. At that time, EcoStyle was an executive van service, servicing the hotel. The company moved into its current facility about five years ago.
Before he became a transportation company executive, Tyler was a professional baseball pitcher. He was drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the second round of the 2001 Major League Baseball June Amateur Draft from Downingtown High School, in Downingtown, PA.
Tyler’s career spanned eight years — five with the Twins organization, two with the Florida Marlins organization and one with the Oakland Athletics organization. Ironically, several years before founding EcoStyle in Raleigh, he played part of the 2006 season in the minors for the Carolina Mudcats in the Carolina League, based in Zebulon, NC, a suburb of Raleigh.