Valet Attendant

Park and fetch cars at restaurants, theaters, and more.
picture of Valet Attendant

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$16,000 – $29,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Valet Attendants do?

If you’ve ever driven to an upscale restaurant or a fancy party, you’ve probably benefited from the work of a Valet Attendant. When guests drive up to a party or other valet location, your job as a Valet Attendant is to hover expectantly around their car. As soon as the Driver opens his or her car door, you help open doors for all the passengers, and give the Driver a ticket or tag of some kind in exchange for the car key. And as soon as the car is empty, you drive it off to park — the more expensive the car, the more prominent the location.

To succeed in this job, you’ll want to be relatively young and spry so you can run to and fro, retrieving parked cars for guests who want to leave, or returning on foot from distant car parks to attend to the next arriving guest. Speed counts big time because you get the bulk of your income from tips given by satisfied guests. Slow service means no tip. The other main trick: Never lose a key!

Although there’s a widely circulated joke about pretending to be a Valet Attendant and making off with a Mercedes, BMW, or even a Maybach, car theft basically never happens on this job. Most companies employing Valet Attendants check your background very thoroughly, and sometimes administer a rigorous driving test before allowing you to get in and drive away in a trusting guest’s ride.

The good news is that you’re entering a growing industry because more and more people are employing Valet Attendants when throwing parties at home, and also because more and more service businesses — restaurants, clubs, even entire local business districts — are hiring Valet Attendants to make coming out and shopping that much easier for their customers.

Should I be a Valet Attendant?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.

  • Also known as: Valet, Valet Parker, Valet Runner

    How to become a Valet Attendant

    Most Valet Attendants have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Bachelor's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9aaaaa&chl=no+college+%2898%25%29|certificate+%281%25%29||bachelor%27s+%281%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,98,98
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