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This is a complete noobie question, but I've been looking up transportation methods in Europe and many sources recommend taking a "private transfer". Could anyone explain to me what a private transfer is, how it works, etc? A quick Googling was not turning up anything helpful.

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closed as unclear what you're asking by Geeo, Dirty-flow, gerrit, Gilles, uncovery Sep 29 '13 at 10:11

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

When you say "transfer" are you talking about airport transfers? Or have you found this term about all kinds of travel? – hippietrail Sep 18 '13 at 4:13
A couple of us have voted to put this question on hold because it's ambiguous until you can clear up the points I've mentioned. We don't know which of the two answers is right until you can clarify the context. – hippietrail Sep 18 '13 at 7:01
up vote 6 down vote accepted

Private transport/transfer is simply opposite to public transportation, unlike buses for example where it is public to anyone, private transport means having your private non-shared transportation method like renting a car, motorbike, taxi or private jet :)

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Thanks, I figured it was something simple like that... I just couldn't figure out if it meant renting a car or a taxi. It seems like an overly broad term haha. – Polaris878 Sep 17 '13 at 22:40
So private transfer just means private transportation? Or I guess airport transfer via private vehicle? If so we should include that because I didn't guess this straight away. – hippietrail Sep 18 '13 at 4:12

In the airport context, it could also mean a chauffeured car/shuttle that is not registered as a taxi (and therefore cannot wait in the area designated for taxis). I would be curious to know where you read that however as I would generally question the recommendation. If you have the means for it and don't want any hassle, taxi is fine but generally speaking public transport is also very good at many European airports.

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many (especially the better) hotels have their own shuttle bus services running to and from airports. Those don't typically use taxi stands. – jwenting Sep 18 '13 at 8:42
Obviously but that's not something you would need to look for specifically and I don't think it is nearly as true in Europe as it is elsewhere in the world. Middle class hotels will typically have a shuttle service in the US or Asia whereas even very good/expensive hotels don't necessarily offer that in Europe. In my mind, it is more a characteristic of large chains than good hotels per se. – Relaxed Sep 18 '13 at 8:55

"Private" just refers to the fact that you will be doing business with a private organization rather than a public one (i.e. the government).

This generally refers to taxi cabs and shuttles, which are run by specific companies (private) as opposed to things like buses and trams which are generally run by the city (public).

So, in your example, people are basically recommending that you call a taxi rather than try to take a bus.

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Shuttles are not 'private transfers' if they are open to the public. – DJClayworth Sep 18 '13 at 17:01
Taxis are open to the public. So are they public transport? But taxis don't pick up extra people when you're already in it? So are they private transport just for you? Yeah I know there are also colectivo taxis in Mexico and stuff like that ... – hippietrail Sep 18 '13 at 18:22
@DJClayworth - shuttles generally are private transfers. Just because you may have to share them with other people doesn't mean they aren't. – ZeekLTK Sep 18 '13 at 19:00

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