Seven tips to make your spare time matter

Late winter and early spring can be a slow time for many an operator. With the economy slowly picking up, we hope you're busy this summer, but in the meantime, there are plenty of things you can do to make your downtime more productive.

  1. Catch up on preventative maintenance

    A well-maintained coach is a dependable coach. Check out last month's index of Maintenance Matters for some ideas and expert tips on keeping your coach in tip-top shape, or attend MCI's upcoming webinar platform on preventative maintenance. Learn more about this series at Webinar dates are March 10, March 24, and April 7.

  2. Invest in training

    MCI has retooled its award-winning webinars — now called MCILearn — and introduced new modules into its Technical Tune-up training series. Visit for dates and details.

  3. Market, market, market

    If business has been slow, or even if it's been great, evaluating your marketing plan is always time well spent. If you've been relying on word-of-mouth, e-mail, ads or mailings, maybe it's time to pick up the phone and reconnect with some of your favorite customers and most promising prospects. If you haven't been using the Internet, now may be the time to start.

  4. Update your website

    Is your website static, or worse yet, full of "upcoming" tours that departed months ago? Websites are increasingly your face to the public, so now's a great time to make sure yours is looking its best. If you don't have the skills to work on your website, consider hiring a professional or ask MCI to help evaluate your current website and suggest updates.

  5. Clean up your act

    Do a little spring cleaning around the office — and on your coaches. Spotless coaches make your company look good, so consider being extra-thorough as long as you have a little extra time. Clean the upholstery, do some detailing and get into every crack and crevice. Chances are, your best customers will notice!

  6. Take a tour

    Are you one of many operators in your area who offer casino trips, shopping tours or sporting-event runs? Consider taking a trip with another company. Knowing what the competition does differently can give you fresh ideas on how you can improve or better market your own services.

  7. Get "in Motion"

    If you're going to be in Nashville on April 13, Dallas on May 11, Chicago on June 15, New York on July 13, or the Winnipeg area on September 21, you owe it to yourself to join "MCI in Motion 2010." We'll be in each of those cities for a single day, offering test-drives, seminars, training opportunities and more to all interested operators. These days are both informative and fun, so make your plans! Visit for details on the next stop.

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