Everyone has seen those movies when someone gets out of the car and throws the key to the valet who hurries to park that beautiful sport car. Well, it’s going to be disappointing, but the truth of what happens is entirely different.
There are many people who don’t know the proper valet parking etiquette, but that’s not a problem, because the rules are very simple.
Some hotels who are rated with 5 stars will surely have a valet parking, with white gloves and all the protocol needed for this. However, if you are going to a restaurant, an art gallery or even a business center, the rules will be slightly less formal and you won’t have to worry too much.
You don’t have to start asking the valet what you need to do, as we have a few tips that should come in handy when you are facing yourself with this situation. Sometimes, not knowing the etiquette can be awkward so it’s better to be informed than to make other people laugh at you.
If you know you are going to a formal event, make sure you have the car clean. It’s not a rule, as the truth is that no one else will be looking twice at your car, but it is a good opportunity to make sure nobody gossips about the interior of the car. Make sure you have it cleaned outside and inside, and throw away all that you don’t need. Not only this will make you look tidy, but you will also be able to find different things a lot easier.
Have some cash ready – the valets prefer receiving tips in cash, and not on card, even if that is also a possibility. Don’t wait for them to stay with the hand out to you, but give them the money when you get out of your car.
Let the car running – this will shorten the time spend there, and your car will be ready to be moved by the valet to your designated place.
Take what you need from your car – this will make you save both time and money. If you go somewhere where tickets are needed take them with you, along with coat, wallet, the phone or something else that you really need.
Hide everything of value in the trunk of the car. Usually, the valet parkers are trustworthy, but you never know who will be driving your car for 2 minutes, as 2 minutes are quite enough to take away everything that you have in your wallet. If you have a laptop, documents or something that is valuable, take them out of sight. This will discourage potential burglars but it will also keep the valet uninterested.
Don’t loose your focus. Once you have reached the place where you have to get off and give the car to the valet, pay attention to those who direct the traffic in the drop-off zone. You don’t want to let people stare at you or tell you twice to move your car.
Don’t forget to tip the valet. This is custom and you need to reward him for the job. Don’t give too much, but don’t be too cheap either. Ask beforehand what the custom in the area is. This way you will be informed and you’ll have available a certain sum of money.
Don’t forget to tell the valet if the car has any relevant problems. It’s good information that can be relevant, especially if you know that the alarm is quite sensitive or a door doesn’t close right.
Don’t forget your ticket for the car. Don’t leave the car until you receive the ticket. Without that ticket you won’t be able to recover your car as fast as you like, and you might loose some important time looking for it in a wide parking area.
Don’t worry too much, as valet parking etiquette is quite simple and you won’t ever have a problem if you follow this simple advice.