2016-04-20 11:12:31.0 2016-04-20 11:12:31.0




Going Above and Beyond is all in a day’s work for Land Rover Roaring Fork general manager Vince Smith, even if it’s 20,000 feet in the air on a re-routed flight from Los Angeles to Grand Junction, Colorado.


Vince was recently booked on an early evening “puddle-jumper” from LAX to his home airport of Aspen. Ten minutes before departure, gate agents announced that due to dangerous wind shear at the airport, the flight would be diverted to Grand Junction.


If that wasn’t bad enough, agents said there was no way to bus passengers to their final destination 125 miles away until the following morning, so overnight accommodations in Grand Junction were being arranged.


“Everyone seemed so upset. Many were heading to Aspen for a ski weekend. Some were heading back home. One older couple was headed to nearby Snowmass to meet their first grandchild,” explained Vince.


Smith took out a piece of paper, scribbled a note and, as he was boarding the plane, handed it to the flight attendant and asked if she wouldn’t mind reading it over the P.A. system.


With the safety drill over and the plane airborne, the announcement came: “As we come through the cabin with beverages, please let us know if you own a Land Rover or Range Rover by ringing your call bell.”


“A few call bells chimed and I heard the flight attendant saying to each person who inquired, “The gentleman who runs Land Rover Roaring Fork is on board and would like to offer complimentary transportation to Aspen tonight for all Land Rover owners.”


“It was a small plane so I could overhear much of what was being said,” recalled Smith. “One person told the person next to him he was on his sixth Range Rover.”


While this was going on, Vince had connected to the plane’s Wi-Fi and was firing off emails to an associate - it was now past 8pm - asking him to get in touch with the car service the dealership normally uses to pick-up out-of-state customers flying in.


When the plane finally landed at Grand Junction, seven passengers were gathered in the lobby. Vince introduced himself, chatted briefly about the situation and then guided them to the waiting SUV limo.


“I talked to the limo driver later that night and he said everyone sounded really appreciative that Land Rover had come to their rescue.”


“I guess my only disappointment was that had the dealership been open, I could have had a couple of Range Rover vehicles waiting outside the Grand Junction airport to really heighten the brand experience.”


Not surprisingly back in February, Glenwood Springs-based Land Rover Roaring Fork was one of only 16 Land Rover retailers in North America to receive the prestigious 2016 Land Rover Pinnacle Club Retailer Excellence Award.


It’s an award that recognizes excellence in - you guessed it - Above and Beyond customer service.




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