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EnglishDutchman t1_j7jbx6x wrote

Serious: As a Brit, I’ve never quite understood the American fascination with valet parking. It does seem like a great way to get your car stolen or trashed. Why not just park your car yourself? I also thought the keys being stored outside in a box was a movie trope. I guess not? In which case how are valet-parked cars ever NOT stolen? You know the owner is inside for the duration. You know where the cars are parked and you can just walk up and take the keys. This seems hilariously silly.


NearlyDeadWeight t1_j7jeqpt wrote

Just to add to the other reply you already got, I would add that most Americans (including myself) don’t actually have a fascination with or even like valet at all…

I’d much rather park my own car and avoid the risks you described (as well as another tip), but in some venues I’m simply never given that option as valet is the only choice if you arrive by car.


Touch_Of_Legend t1_j7jw1jn wrote

There are some hotels in the cities that requires valet parking because they have underground (secured) parking lots.

Customers/patrons are not allowed to drive on site.

Those hotels often have the parking charge (mandatory) on your bill so you’d see it ahead of time.


thefudd t1_j7ka4f1 wrote

I tip the valet to let me drive and park my own car


nicetriangle t1_j7keqa7 wrote

Only the filthy rich like it. It's always overpriced and the only times I've used it, it was foisted on me by the hotel as the only parking method they offered. The general public generally hates valet, myself included.


J_Robert_Oofenheimer t1_j7jdoaf wrote

I was a valet for about five years through college and grad school. It's typically done for a few reasons. One being if it's a fancy dress event and the parking situation sucks. You can't have women in super fancy dresses and heels walking three blocks downtown in the rain to go to a wedding, or parking in the dirt lot and getting their nice clothes filthy, so you have them pull up right to the door then park for them.

The other reason is if the parking situation will require more cars than you have room for. I did a big event where we had like a lot with 30 spaces or something and we stuffed 80 cars in there. Took careful maneuvering to shove them all in there and then get them back out. The only way it would ever have been viable is if one person or persons were in control of ALL the cars.

As for the keys, typically we would have a person standing with the keys, plus the stand is locked. Most thieves aren't going to pick the thing up. It's heavy as shit.


OnlyHuman1073 t1_j7k3gt7 wrote

I valeted in high school. Events lasted hours so the kids would drink while waiting, and smoke, and learn to drive stick on the cars they parked. This was in the 90s, but yea, try and not get your car valeted.


J_Robert_Oofenheimer t1_j7lwlhn wrote

That's crazy. We never did anything at all like that.


OnlyHuman1073 t1_j7mcg6n wrote

The bosses on the job would literally get the people that didn't know stick to drive the sticks, and stop after so long if it was a shitty learner and switch cars so they could either keep going or try someone else. They needed stick drivers, and perhaps they didn't want to be the only ones driving stick because sometimes it was a LOOOooooooong run to get their car in a neighborhood during a wedding. Man, so many good stories but I have a meeting, perhaps I will be back.


UncommercializedKat t1_j7kfy5u wrote

For events and stuff like this valet is understandable. For getting a burger on a Wednesday night no thanks.


Caveman108 t1_j7jmiod wrote

It’s just rich people shit. I’ve literally never done valet in my life. Don’t remember my parents using one besides one time at a nice hotel in big city, and that was only for check-in. Seriously not that common.


Shelisheli1 t1_j7juze6 wrote

I hate valet. Not only do I want to pay money to park.. it’s awkward af standing around waiting for them to run to my car and bring it back when I’m ready to leave.


UncommercializedKat t1_j7kfb94 wrote

Am American and hate valet. Nothing like paying $5 so you can wait 15 minutes for a valet to pull your car from a spot 30 feet away. (Some restaurants don't have self parking and are mandatory valet. Also street parking is by residential permit only for several blocks and public transport is a joke)

What's even better is when you valet your car and have one too many drinks and do the responsible thing and take an Uber home. Then when you get home you realize your house key is with the valet. Fun times.


SpaceTabs t1_j7kb4bn wrote

That part of DC you're better off not taking a car. This is primarily for patrons that aren't from the area. Maybe they aren't comfortable with using the local garages. I frequent that area often, but either take the train or park much further away where it's safer and quieter.


subafish t1_j7kvae4 wrote

I’ve definitely seen valet stands in west London.


subafish t1_j7mvltw wrote

Yeah I have seen them all over Mayfair and Victoria at high-end hotels. Valet isn’t strictly an American invention. It’s worldwide.


EnglishDutchman t1_j7naepz wrote

I get that but the ones in London are only really used by people who have money to burn.


thedeathmachine t1_j7lswbu wrote

In a busy city you sometimes have no choice but to valet or spend an hour looking for parking spots. Recently I used valet because there were no alternatives


EnglishDutchman t1_j7nac8x wrote

Ah yeah I guess if you don’t have decent public transport that would deffo be an issue.