Posted by Blog Author in News & Blog on 12/13/2017

Read the full article on The Art of Manliness

It’s a standard scene in television and film that’s designed to show what a smooth, cool dude the protagonist is. He cruises up to a club in his sleek sports car, hands the vehicle over to the parking valet with a wink, and then confidently strides inside with a beautiful dame on his arm.

That, unfortunately, is not at all how my first time using valet parking went. My friend was getting married at a swanky hotel, and when I pulled up to the drop-off zone, I realized I had no idea what to do. Should I wait for the valet to come over or get right out of the car? Do I leave the car running or give him the keys? Who do I tip? The guy parking the car or the one who will bring it back to me later? I was flustered. I was awkward. I was driving a Honda Element.

How to use a parking valet service is something nobody teaches you, and I know I’m not the only guy who felt like a complete doofus the first time he tried it, as I’ve had a bunch of AoM readers request that I write up a tutorial on the subject.

To find out the proper protocol for using a valet service, we talked to former valet Drew Klein. Drew valeted cars all throughout college at a Marriott Hotel. Below we share his tips for how to use a parking service without feeling like an idiot.

Beforehand

Tidy up your car. If you know you’re going to be using valet service for your evening out, clean up your car a little bit. It doesn’t need the full wax service, but a wash is a good idea if it’s super dirty and cleaning out the McDonald’s bag in the backseat will make sure you aren’t embarrassed to hand over the keys.

Have some cash on hand. You don’t want to pull up to the valet only to realize you forgot to get cash for the tip. You either have to drive away and park on your own, or be the ungrateful cad who uses the service and stiffs the valet. Even if you can tip with your card, a cash tip is always the better way to go.

Dropping Off Your Car

Pay attention. Things move fast at the vehicle drop-off zone. The valets have an efficient system in place so that guests can drop off or pick up their cars quickly and easily. You don’t want to be the schmo who throws a wrench in the gears. Be alert for valets directing traffic and follow their lead. Drive into the loading zone safely, slowly, and in the right direction.

Tuck away all your valuables. If you have any valuable items in your car, tuck them away out of sight or put them in the trunk before you arrive at the valet stand. While the vast majority of valets are honest and trustworthy, you never know when you’ll encounter a bad apple.

Grab what you need for the night. Before you get out of the car, make sure you have everything you’re going to need for the evening — cellphone, wallet, tickets, etc. Sure, the valet can run to your car to get these things if you forget them, but if you have him do so, it’s good form to tip an extra few dollars for his trouble. Save your money and double-check before you get out of the car.

Leave the car running. Don’t take your keys out of the ignition. Just park the car and leave it running. Remember, things move quickly at the drop-off zone. Taking your keys out for the valet just mucks up the intricate ballet they have going on.

Wait until the valet opens the door for you (or not). Drew says that whether you wait for the valet to open the door for you depends on a few things. If the valet service is being offered at a high-end hotel or restaurant, expect to have the valet come open the door for you. If it’s a less formal event, like an art festival, you might not get that sort of service, so just get out of the car as soon as you pull up.

Even if you can expect the white glove treatment from the valet, if you have a female passenger, the valet will open the door and help her out of the car first. You can sit in the car and wait for him or another valet to open your door for you – but if that makes you feel a little silly (I know it would me) feel free to get out of your car yourself while your female passenger is being helped. Read more…

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2013/03/19/how-to-use-valet-parking-without-looking-like-an-idiot/

 

Tags: Out on the Town , Valet , Parking

« Back

What Our Clients Say

Our success depends on your satisfaction and that's why we are committed to doing our best for you every day. See what our customers say about our professional service.
Read Testimonials »