How to Choose the Right Valet Company for Your Private Event

When you hire a valet company for your private event, you want to impress your guests by making a positive first impression. How should you choose the right valet company?

First, make sure the valet company you are about to hire is trustworthy. It is imperative that the company be fully licensed and insured to protect your guests in the event of any incident or damage to the vehicle. Valet companies should have the following insurance.

  • General liability: This covers any injury to a person or their property that is caused by a valet attendant. This includes direct injuries caused by the driver striking a pedestrian.
  • Garage keeper’s liability: This covers any damage to any vehicle in the parking lot that is under the care of the valet company. It includes collisions or vehicle theft for any vehicle that is in their "care, custody, and control."
  • Workers compensation: This policy provides medical and disability coverage for valets and other employees for job-related injuries or illness. It also provides some reimbursement for lost wages during recovery.

Next, determine how reputable they are. View testimonials on line to see how well they do their job or ask for references. Check out the company’s website. Is it professional? Does it highlight their experience with private events? Have they successfully handled an event of your size? How long have they been in business? Your venue, florist, caterer or event planner may also be able to provide a referral.

Ask about the staff. You want your guests to trust the individuals driving their vehicles. Are the valets required to pass a background check and have good driving records? What is the minimum age of the valets? Will your guests feel comfortable having an 18 year old drive their $200,000 Bentley? How will the valets be attired? Will khaki cargo pants or shorts present a professional appearance? What are the company’s grooming standards for valets? Do they follow “Disney like” standards?

Are the valets trained in professionalism and etiquette? Are they trained on safe driving and key control procedures?

Ask who will oversee the event? Who will be your main point of contact if there are any unforeseen issues the day of the event? Will there be a supervisor on site?

Finally, request a quote. Be prepared to provide the following information: event date, start and end times, location of event, estimated number of guests and vehicles, (divide the number of guests by 2 to determine number of vehicles) and will the guests be arriving all at once. In addition, be prepared to provide insight as to where vehicles will be parked and if there is anything difficult about the parking such as one way drive, steep hills, no parking on street, or gated community. Once you have requested an estimate, the valet company should get back to you within 24 hours.

Sometimes a site review may be required. A representative from the valet company will set up an appointment with you to meet and review the logistics and parking plan for the event. Valet parking in Scottsdale requires a special valet parking permit. Find out if the valet company will secure the permit for you as part of their service.

Prices for valet parking service at a one-time private event such as a wedding, cocktail party or business conference vary considerably depending on the number of valets needed, the length of time the service is provided and whether parking is in an on-premises lot or off-premises. Events such as a wedding, where most guests arrive and depart at the same time, may require twice the number of valets. Charges for an average venue are typically $25-$35 an hour per valet. There is typically a five hour minimum charge. Some companies provide discounts for groups or individuals that use their services frequently.

For more information on valet parking service or if you have any other questions or comments please contact us at American Valet (800)-419-2975.