In order to become a valet, you must first be licensed to drive in the area where you intend to work. In addition to being licensed to drive cars, you may also need to become licensed to drive passenger vehicles, such as a shuttle van or bus, particularly if planning to work as an airport valet. A clean driving record is also essential if you hope to become a valet. If you are properly licensed and in possession of a good driving record, you can apply to become a parking valet or a shuttle driver directly through a particular employer hiring such workers. You may also apply for an available position with a valet service that provides occasional valet parking at special events.
It is not unusual for a car valet to park expensive vehicles, handle cash for parking fees or to come in contact with a customer’s personal belongings left in a car while it is parked. For this reason, it is sometimes necessary for valets to be bonded. This means that you cannot have a criminal record if you intend to become a valet.
Many employers will provide on-the-job training for new valets. Depending on the opportunities available in your area, you may also want to consider employers with odd work hours in order to gain initial access to the industry. For example, some employers require employees to work overnight shifts at places such as a hotel or casino valet service. Employees may also be required to work very late hours if employed by a valet service that provides parking attendants for evening entertainment events. While working odd hours is not a requirement, it may be difficult to find valet work during normal business hours and such jobs can still help you gain valuable training and experience when you first decide to become a valet.
Before you become a valet, you should also be in good physical shape. A valet’s job often requires standing for long periods of time and running on asphalt to provide efficient customer service. As well, you must have a friendly, patient attitude and be adept in working with different personality types. When hiring parking attendants, employers often place great emphasis on good-natured personality traits and will factor such into the decision to ultimately hire new applicants. A customer-oriented focus will also help you earn a better tip income after you become a valet.