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Living in the Los Angeles area, valet parking is a fact of life most of us have to deal with. In fact, I made a living parking cars when I was a college student at UCLA. Couple the valet parking prevalence in Los Angeles, with one of the highest concentrations of high performance, luxury cars in the world, and problems are bound to happen.

I have been driving the M5 for a couple of months, and was nervous about leaving the car with the Valet, not because I am afraid they will drive it in a "spirited manner" (I used to :7:), but rather that they wouldn't understand the SMG. After the first few times, I stopped explaining it, and let it go. I figured that they have dealt with other M5s, F cars with paddles, and so forth.

Last night, the valet pulls up the car, opens the door, gets out and waits for me to get in. I'm saying my farewells to friends, and as I walk towards the car, I realize it is rolling forward and I jump in and pull the brake handle. The M was about to get to know a Toyota Prius in front of it really well. 2 inches to spare.

So, do you explain the SMG to the Valet person, bail on the valet and self-park, or ASSume they know?
 

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Living in the Los Angeles area, valet parking is a fact of life most of us have to deal with. In fact, I made a living parking cars when I was a college student at UCLA. Couple the valet parking prevalence in Los Angeles, with one of the highest concentrations of high performance, luxury cars in the world, and problems are bound to happen.

I have been driving the M5 for a couple of months, and was nervous about leaving the car with the Valet, not because I am afraid they will drive it in a "spirited manner" (I used to :7:), but rather that they wouldn't understand the SMG. After the first few times, I stopped explaining it, and let it go. I figured that they have dealt with other M5s, F cars with paddles, and so forth.

Last night, the valet pulls up the car, opens the door, gets out and waits for me to get in. I'm saying my farewells to friends, and as I walk towards the car, I realize it is rolling forward and I jump in and pull the brake handle. The M was about to get to know a Toyota Prius in front of it really well. 2 inches to spare.

So, do you explain the SMG to the Valet person, bail on the valet and self-park, or ASSume they know?


Wow between this story and your confessions as a former valet, I REALLY want to leave my car with these people.
 

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wow thank god you got in the car in time to stop the car....
 

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nice save i bet the valet felt real smart after that one.

why would the valet have any reason to be careful with your car, the rims, or anything else? it says on the back of the ticket that the car is not their responsibility.
 

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those tickets are USUALLY not enough to actually dismiss the valet company from damages...there have definitely been accidents that have been compensated for..but that said, I only valet if my car can sit in the front...otherwise, I like parking and walking...
 

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If theres a valet, my first question is can I pay the valet fee and just park it myself (or take care of them on top of the fee). If they say no, I ask them if they know how to drive the car. If they say yes, I stand there as they drive it away to make sure they don't do something idiotic. Its a little nerve-wracking but sometimes theres no other way.
 

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^^ what he said.

Usually I pay the valet $20, and don't pay the fee. Then I park it, lock it, and keep the key. No valet ticket.. just go to my car and leave.
 

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There is a really good thread on the subject; search for it and check it out. I usually just say non-nonchalantly that I've had bad experiences with valets in the past, ask them to take care of my "baby". At that point, they sometimes offer to park the car upfront or let me park it. If they don't I then ask them who do I talk to if there is problem with my car related to parking (that usually gets them awake) and I tell them that I keep the keys so they usually park the car promptly and give me the keys, i tip him something extra and then I head into the restaurant or whatever.

So far so good.
 

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Had to valet park Downtown LA and I asked the valet if he knew how to drive SMG..... "Oh, Yeah yeah"... I said Yeah Yeah???, he says oh yes. As I walk away he burns 2 feet of rubber backward, fiddles with the shifter and chirps forward and slams on the brakes. I said a Hail Mary and walked away shaking my head and crossing my fingers...
 

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nice save i bet the valet felt real smart after that one.

why would the valet have any reason to be careful with your car, the rims, or anything else? it says on the back of the ticket that the car is not their responsibility.
Not an attorney, but isn't it illegal for any contract to absolve a party from any liability with regards to performance of said contract?

Just cause the valet places say they aren't liable, doesn't mean that its true. I think it just scares people off from pursuing damages.
 

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sorry to offend former valets, but I don't trust any of those teenage no goods. Last time I went to a place that required valet parking, I had the brat walk beside my car to show me where to park... Dirtbags... I would let the touch the dirty mat under my feet!
 

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I always take the other car if I'm not familiar with an area or I know they dont have self parking. I refuse to let anyone I dont know drive it. I dont play that ****e!
 

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Not an attorney, but isn't it illegal for any contract to absolve a party from any liability with regards to performance of said contract?

Just cause the valet places say they aren't liable, doesn't mean that its true. I think it just scares people off from pursuing damages.
You are correct. It is the same way with the "disclaimer" signs that you see on NYC parking garage. Pure spin.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Wirelessly posted (BlackBerry8300/4.2.2 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/102)

Thanks for all the responses. Some funny stuff. Yes, adhesion contracts, the ones on the back of tickets are BS. Secondly, I think I will do the $20 let me keep it up front thing. Sometimes tough when you have a Murcialago, Enzo, and Phantom taking up prime spots.
 

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Valet

I agree with all of you who say that they don't let the Valet drive the car. I don't care where you are there is always self parking, it just may be a five min. walk. I do catch the abuse from the wife for the five minutes but it gives me peace of mind throughout the entire meal or show. I don't even like my wife driving it when I am not in the car, why would I let some kid, who could only dream of driving 500 horses, take it.....:nono:
 

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So, do you explain the SMG to the Valet person, bail on the valet and self-park, or ASSume they know?
Last week was the first time my M6 was handed over to a valet.
My wife and I went to Gladstones in Malibu. The restaurant is on the beach side of Pacific Coast Highway, just north of Santa Monica. Next to the restaurant is a large valet only parking lot, which can easily handle several hundred cars. There was really no choice but to use the valet.

I did not give the valet any instructions.
After dinner, my car and a pair of 7-series were parked facing the entrance to the lot -- they were positioned for display, not in normal parking slots. It was nice to get a little special recognition :M5thumbs:

No problems with the valet, and the seafood dinner was excellent.
 

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Everytime I am forced to valet the car I ask the guy, "Do you know how to drive one of these?"

90% of the time they do, 10% of the time they need a walkthrough.

I don't understand how hard it is, the instructions are on the stupid lever.
 
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