HYDERABAD: Weddings in India are a big fat affair, and when it comes to the royal city of Hyderabad, it gets even bigger. From decor and food to clothing and return gifts, weddings, for many, are a time for pomp and show. Earlier, it was the roping in of the coolest DJs, marking the day with the most expensive champagne, having the bride and groom roam around on a chariot and more. But this wedding season, brides and grooms are arriving or leaving in swanky cars.
While not everybody owns a fancy car, they’re looking at renting luxury mobiles with customised decor. Ashwin Jain, the CEO of 4Wheels Travels, a car rental in Banjara Hills, says different people come in with different needs that range from a Jaguar to a Range Rover and a Porsche to a Bentley and Rolls-Royce. “People come in with different budgets and needs.
Someone could just want a Jaguar that would cost Rs 20,000-Rs 30,000 per event. Most others like a Mercedes- Benz S-Class or an E-Class that cost even higher. Others want a BMW that would cost anywhere between Rs 18,000-20,000 per wedding. There are some who want a Mercedes-Benz GClass G63 AMG, an exotic jeep-like vehicle,” Ashwin shares.
Some of their clientele, he says, even go to the extent of a Rolls-Royce or Bentley. “There are some who don’t mind being aspirational and stretching their budget. Because there’s nobody renting them out here in Hyderabad, we get these cars from Chennai and Bengaluru, just for the event. But such demands are very rare, because not many would want to shell out lakhs for a five-six-hour drive.” The wedding car rental market in Hyderabad is huge, often leaving customers spoilt for choice.
Saying that the market in the city is evolving, Ashwin says, there are also people who seek to have vintage cars at their weddings and talks about an interesting trend. “These days, there are rentals willing to customise a non-vintage car to look like a real, antique-looking one. This, because it serves the purpose of both — the look and usability,” he says.
So today, a client can ask for a Maruti to be transformed to look like a vintage car. This works well because the primary restrictions that come with a real vintage car include limited mileage and overheating of the engine, Ashwin explains. Mir Jahangir of Hyderabad Wedding Cars in Owaisi Pura, Masab Tank, notices a shift in the way people have been celebrating weddings since the pandemic.
“Guest lists are shorter, but at the same time, families refuses to compromise on luxury. Some people rent a Bentley for a week for the wedding, while some prefer to flaunt it to celebrate luxurious honeymoons,” Jahangir tells CE. Mohammed Iqbal from AKA Cars, Banjara Hills, says that there has been an increased demand for premium cars not only for weddings but also for other functions, for which guests need to be picked up from airports.
“One of our clients wanted to rent a Rolls-Royce which we had to arrange for not one, but three days. The family wanted to use it on the day of the wedding and also for all the other functions. Some even rent cars for their wedding photoshoots,” says Iqbal.