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Related to carriage: carriage trade
the carriage trade
Affluent patrons of a store, restaurant, or other such establishment. The name refers to the usual mode of transportation for wealthy people in bygone eras. Don't worry about this slight economic downturn—the carriage trade will keep us in business.
horse and buggyand horse and carriage; buggy whip
Fig. a carriage pulled by a horse, as opposed to a modern automobile; the horse was urged on with a whip. (A symbol of old-fashionedness or out-of-dateness. Particularly with go out with, as in the examples.) That kind of clothing went out with the horse and buggy. I thought suspenders went out with the horse and carriage, but I see them everywhere now.
The best customers. Restaurants, stores, and other establishments were especially pleased to serve wealthy customers who arrived and departed in their own private horse and carriage, as distinguished from people who came and went by foot or public transportation. It was the purchasing power of the carriage trade that produced a reaction from the establishment's personnel that was solicitous to the point of obsequiousness.