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Quick Tips: Valet Dropoff

You are currently viewing Quick Tips: Valet Dropoff
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How does valet dropoff work?

For the unseasoned among us, the first step of valet presents an awkward stumbling block. Pulling up to the attendant ratchets anxiety. “What am I supposed to do?” you wonder. While valet dropoff isn’t as complicated as you might think, there are some quick tips for passing your car off you should review.

First, above all, remain attentive. Valet drivers and their managers craft a pre-planned traffic flow with lanes for each type of traffic. Cones and signs designate lanes for incoming, outgoing, or loading traffic. If you don’t know where to go, search for the signs. Usually, valet operations include signage directing you towards the valet dropoff. However, parking attendants also look for kinks in the system. If they find a driver lost among the lanes, or driving the wrong way, they leap to action. Don’t ignore them! They help you find the right direction.

Another important tip prior to valet dropoff involves the items located within your car. Keep track of the things in your vehicle and tuck them away before you arrive at your destination. While you may fear handing your keys to a nefarious thief, the reason protects both of you. Valets often fall victim to careless drivers assuming the parking attendant stole an item when in actuality the vehicle owner lost it. Check to see what things remain in your car when you drop it off. Then, you’ll know when something goes missing. Also, keeping items hidden cuts down on potential theft from snooping criminals peeking through windows. Really, that’s common sense for all scenarios, not just valet.

Furthermore, regarding personal effects, ensure you take everything you need for the night. As previously mentioned, attendants and on-site managers construct a valet service to run quickly and smoothly. Requesting an item from your vehicle after dropoff adds undue strain. Keep things moving along by checking that you have everything you need before you get out.

On that note, when you exit your vehicle, leave the keys inside and roll down the window. As you pull up to the valet, your window down allows easy communication if necessary. Attendants can speak directly to you instead of relying on gestures. Additionally, when you exit your car, it guarantees you don’t lock your keys inside. If, like many of us, your reflexes hit the lock button on your way out, having the window down prevents a potential night-ruiner. You could turn the vehicle off, pull the key out, and hand it to the valet. However, it unnecessarily adds time to the process. Leave the car on so a driver can pull away quickly.

Finally, tip. While many believe tipping comes at the end, in actuality, it’s appropriate to tip twice. Tip $2 to $5 to each attendant that handles your vehicle. Often, they won’t be the same. Don’t stiff one in service of the other.

Now we’ve walked through the process of valet dropoff, pull up to the attendant with confidence knowing you won’t botch the interaction.