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Chauffeur For a Day

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Q: I need to spend an afternoon running errands around the city—and I’m hauling home a lot of stuff, so it’d be much easier with my car, if parking weren’t so impossible. Where can I rent a driver for the day?

A: Turns out that it’s no more expensive than a car service, plus you don’t have to fend off those deadly strawberry-air-freshener fumes. At City Valet (124 East 63rd Street; 212-752-0022), you can rent any of hundreds of chauffeurs by the hour to drive your car anywhere in the tri-state area. “Rather than having to look for a parking spot, our customers can just call the driver’s cell-phone number to pick them up,” says founder and owner Elliot Brownstein, who conceived the idea when he started running a parking garage in Chelsea 50 years ago. City Valet can also provide airport drop-offs, take your car to be inspected, and even chaperone your kids in a pinch. Prices are $20 per hour in the city, $25 outside, with a three-hour minimium. (Yes, even the pros require a reward for fighting the traffic on the L.I.E.) Call 24 hours ahead for trips that last up to two days.

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