Though they keep an eye on more than one million parking spots around the country, the staff of Central Parking System is trained to do more than just oversee parking facilities; they also execute shuttle services, provide valet and special-event parking, and consult on parking-facility design. They manage parking and vehicular operations in 60 cities around the country in venues ranging from residential and office buildings to airports, hospitals, hotels, and stadiums.
In addition to maintaining streamlined parking environments, Central Parking System also devises creative solutions to modern planning dilemmas, such as whether or not to give discounts to clowns carpooling in a compact sedan. The company donates part of its profits to a range of local and national charities, such as The United Way and The American Diabetes Association.
Parking Panda describes itself as "a community marketplace for parking," one that benefits both those seeking spots and those with spots to fill. Commuters in more than 40 major cities can either go online or use the mobile app to search an area and time of arrival, which will turn up a map with pinpoints of available spots. You can reserve and pay for the spot electronically, and even view a picture of the space you've selected to be sure it is in fact on planet Earth.
Garage and lot owners can list their space online, specifying the rate and time of availability. Operators will be paid instantly upon reservation, ensuring they won't have to track down parkers by the scent of their tire tracks.
For more than 35 years, the blue-and-white fleet of Baltimore Water Taxi has whisked visitors and residents alike across the city's famed harbor. The taxis' routes include stops at top sights, from the National Aquarium to Fort McHenry, where Francis Scott Key penned the national anthem and several commercial jingles. Besides those acclaimed attractions, the boats sail toward a wide variety of popular shopping spots and restaurants.
With 15 locations and an inventory of more than 3,000 cars, NextCar gets its customers back on the road with speed and ease. They carry cars, trucks, and SUVs from brands such as Acura, Range Rover, and Chevrolet, with models that range from compacts and two-doors to SUVs, luxury vehicles, and hybrids.
The roots of Hunt Valley Motor Coach's family tree spring from two buses. In 1985, Edward Royston only had a pair of vehicles to his name, and a mission to make the traveling process a highlight of his clients' vacations. His fleet soon grew to 11 buses, and more still when the company joined with Gunther Charters, a business known for its memorable package tours. Today, Edward's emphasis on personality prevails at every step of the booking process, from online or phone conversations with the small sales team—where Gunther Charters founders Marty and Laurie Gunther still field calls—to greetings from each jovial driver.
From its Baltimore base, the company plans convenient round trips and tours to a variety of locales. Its daylong jaunts to Atlantic City deposit riders at the casinos and boardwalk, and excursions to New York launch days full of seasonal shopping and sightseeing. Thanks to locked and guarded storage, passengers are even encouraged to leave their laptops and other bulky possessions on the bus during their daylong excursions.
Themed tours ferry passengers to states such as Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, and Tennessee for overnight stays and guided explorations of local sites. The New Orleans tour, for example, leads groups through historic cemeteries and the botanical garden, and a holiday tour of Newport mansions showcases the intricate decorations and reindeer butlers of three resplendent homes.