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Valet Parking vs Self Parking

long beach...
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Valet Parking vs Self Parking

I have always wondered why people would self park instead of valet.

This is certainly not a put down on self parking but for the few dollars for tipping you don't have to look for a space, walk in the heat & most important risk a mugger. I know I carry much more cash than usual & have read stories through the years that thiefs do target parking garages/structures.

Maybe I'm wrong. I'd love to hear your opinion.

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1. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

I do both- depending on the hotel. I find it easy to self-park at some of the garages- the Mirage(using the Spring Mountain entrance-4th level) and Bellagio, for example. It is sometimes faster than waiting to get my car back after valet parking. At other hotels- no, I will definitely use valet parking.

As far as theft is concerned- I have always rented a car- over 60+ visits and around 700 days- and I never ever had any problems with self park-ever! Or anywhere else for that matter.

San Francisco...
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2. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

It's cost/benefit for me.

The probability of being mugged times the amount of cash I carry is less than the amount to valet/tip.

Destination Expert
for Las Vegas
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3. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

We did both on this last trip and it depends on how busy we thought valet would be. I would rather be able to just get my car.

Having said that, I agree with VP03, self-parking at MGM involved a much longer walk than Bellagio or Mirage. It's more about the time than the money.

Also, read Warmwind's experience with her valeted car.

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4. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

You are 100% Correct, Many dont know the problems some garages have had and for that matter some problems using credit cards.

But, if you bring this up many will say its like any other city and that they have never had a problem.

For the amount of tourist in and out. yes its a fairly safe city but you still have to watch where you are and keep an eye on your surroundings.

Las Vegas also has its more then fair share of gangs.

Eugene, Oregon
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5. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

Yes, Damama is right, I had a bad experience with valet at the Venetian this trip - they scratched our car (all over, twice).

BUT...I would still valet becaue I *believe* (and anyone please feel free to tell me I'm wrong) - when you self-park, you do so at your own risk. But when you valet, it becomes the responsibility of the hotel. Add in the convenience (I've never had to wait long for a valet, and this was the first time, ever, we've had a problem with damage), and I will always choose to valet.

As a matter of fact, when they brought us our damaged car, we chose to re-valet it when we decided not to go anywhere!

Santa Barbara, CA
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6. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

ALWAYS valet park.

You can get away with only tipping a buck if your concerned about cost. Most self-parks are hard to find, hard to find a spot close and waste a LOT of time.

Destination Expert
for Las Vegas, Washington DC, County Donegal, Western Ireland
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7. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

I don't think puttin the opinion in all caps necessarily makes it the right call. :)

Some properties lend themselves to easier valet parking than others for a variety of reasons. LV Hilton for example, depending on where my room is I can self-park and be in my room in 2 minutes and back in my car in 2 minutes when I need it instead of waiting on valet, which I've never found to be very fast there.

Also if I'm driving up from the rear of the property at places like Venetian it's just as easy for me to self-park than it is to drive around to the front to valet.

There's no rocket science here, it just depends. That's what I ALWAYS think, anyway. :)

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8. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking


I ALWAYS think the same. lol

Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
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9. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

I find self parking easy. This is a choice, in my opinion, not a right or wrong answer.

My personality is such that I would rather walk five minutes to my car in self park, then wait even two minutes for a valet to retreive my car. It's not the cost of a tip, I just prefer walking to waiting. I am not saying this is right for other people, but I think there are others who are like me and you probably know who you are.

I have never felt unsafe in a Strip parking garage. Most often you will see security driving around the garage in golf carts. I believe they have surveilance cameras in the garages too. But, that too is a personal issue. Some people are more nervous than others about their surroundings.

If you know you are the kind of person who gets nervous about the potential for crime, valet may be a better choice for you, especially at night.

On my last two trips I have stayed downtown at the Four Queens. I admit to a little weird feeling pulling into the self park at the Four Queens because the stairwells are open to the street. But I have never had a problem and never run into anyone who looked like they didn't belong.

If you are in Vegas on a crowded weekend you might have to park further away, but I have not found problems finding parking spaces.

I usually try to figure out where the entrance to the hotel is and park on that level to avoid stairs or elevators, otherwise I go to a less busy level near the stairs.

The next time I am in Vegas I am definitely going to try valet parking though. I often recall seeing lines of people waiting for their cars at valet and I really want to see for myself how long it will take to get my car back.

Park Forest...
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10. Re: Valet Parking vs Self Parking

Valet is not always open to all customers. I am sure tipping can help in some of those situations but I am not into bribes. Some people are also concerned with damage to their vehicles. Sometimes it's just easier to self park: When I see all those parking spaces outside Red Rock and that easy to access garage, it never occurs to me to look for the garage.

Personally, I go with what is most convienent at the time but I prefer valet. But with some of these Mega Resorts, it seems that the parking garage is closer to some rooms while valet is closer to others and I just pick the most sensible option.