A Novel Approach to Giving a Valet Instructions for the Model S

Cross posted from TMC for this who don't visit there ...

I valeted (is that a word?) my car for the first time over the weekend, and there was a lot of arm waving. The car survived the experience, but it occurred to me that there had to be a backup approach.

So … I decided to create a simple instruction sheet for valets, post it on the web, assign the page to my Model S browser as a “favorite,” and then call it up (full screen) just before I get to the valet stand. That way, a simple set of driving instructions for the Model S is on the Model S display as the valet gets in. He/she can read as required, and potentially embarrassing situations might be avoided. It can also be useful if you lend your Model S to a friend (yeah … right :)

I’ve posted the Valet Instruction Sheet as a public service at the new website supporting our center console insert (CCI):

You’ll find it under “Valet” on the top navigation bar.

If you find errors, omissions, or ambiguities, let me know here. Hope you find the instructions (and the website) informative.

My approach to avoiding issues with a valet: never allow a valet to touch my car.

No valet touvhing my car either. At least not for the first few years.

sorry, thats touching

Get the no touching philosophy, but where I live there are desirable destinations that almost require it, unless you want to walk for a l-o-n-g, l-o-n-g way. This was intended for folks who have a more liberal attitude about valet parking :)

Great page thanks for making it.

Perfect! Thanks!

The page is cool :), but what is even MORE cool is the idea behind it and the novel things a car like the Model S allows us to do.

Kudos to the originality!

Soflauthor: I thought I had heard that your seat belt needed to be connected before the car could be driven. True or false?

Soflauthor. Very clever, but … Can the valet read? The valet I use can read – I am the valet. Looking forward to your finalizing design and pricing the center console. Since you asked, tan leather and glossy obeche.

I've never owned a car fancy enough to be one of those at a nice restaurant that is parked up front instead of the valet lot. What's the protocol to use one of those spots? (Some places only have valet parking - with no self serve lot.)


There was actually another thread related to this topic:

After much consideration, my 'valet plan' is to hand the guy some cash and tell him to get in the passenger seat while I park the car.

Suggestion for the Valet Page: "car is fast, and responds instantly!"

But it's almost an invitation/challenge to fool around.

Great idea, though I too plan to never valet my car. I've only valeted my current car once, twice in 5 years, and now I avoid those places that I had to valet to park.

Very nice instructions and web page in general! I'll let you know if there are gaps after I try out your instructions on my first drive ;) Is the lock on walk-away a feature that must be enabled before hand? I see you advertise that the car is fast. Good to give a warning I guess, so long as it's not viewed as an invitation. Looking forward to valet mode.

@cerjor: You can start and drive the Model S without using a seat belt. A tone does sound, however.

Great idea! One edit: I'd say the car comes with a special "Wireless KEY" that you should not leave in the car after you've parked it. Calling this a car shaped FOB (remote key) is unnecessarily confusing IMHO.

Agreed, dumb it down just in case.

Here is my approach... "You might prefer that I park my own car, because...(a) This car is too complex for you, and WAY about your pay grade,and (b) If you damage it, you will have to spend the next ten years eating through a tube in your nose!

I guess it's not a "Punch list" item because it was never promised, but sure seems to me that a Valet mode would be easy to do with software. Anyone with the car, is there a Valet mode? Has anyone heard if one is forthcoming? Can we make a punch list exception?

IMHO, 'Valet Mode' should be a function in the Model S that turns the car off, if it detects anyone trying to drive it with less than $500,000.00 in personal liability insurance ;-)

Pretty sure the valet will not let you park with him in the passenger seat. If you hit something or someone else, it's his ass. Better to use their insurance. I would think a ride along should be acceptable, especialy if they offer charging. Someone needs to hook that up.

Liability insurance will not replace my Model S Sig. P85 if it's totaled. I would have to wait all over again, back to the end of the line? To have to wait another year? OH THE HUMANITY!! ;)

That reminds me of the scene in Jackass, the Movie where Johnny Knoxville rents a car, takes it to the demolition derby, then drops it off.

I can say I've never had an incident with valet. Might be safer in valet only parking than with the general public on a street or parking garage.


I will let you know. I suspect it just depends on how much you offer him :)

I don't let valets drive my current car as it has a dogleg (racing shift pattern) and tends to confuse them. Most will let you park it yourself if you explain. Even at hotels with valet only parking. I don't intend to let a valet drive the model s.

Great idea Soflauthor! Thanks for the link. One suggestion, perhaps 3.c. should read "Push up on the gear shift..."

A google translate Spanish version is up. Just click on "Instrucciones de Valet" below the title and a new Spanish language page appears. My Espanol is terrible, so I can't edit it myself.

I'll have my Columbian friend do that as soon as she returns from a trip. This should serve in the interim.

Last time I used valet: Gave the my BMW Z3 and they backed up a Yukon XL and literally "peeled back" the entire hood of my car. Please avoid valet.

I am guessing a valet mode will be forthcoming. At the test drive event, the Tesla folks noted that the cars had a software patch that prevented them from exceeding 80 MPH. I asked whether something like this, with a lot lower limit, could be installed for a valet of child-driver mode. The response was that they were hearing a lot of that and the feedback had gone back to the "powers that be" about having this as part of a software update.

I suspect there are bigger fish to fry at the moment with the launch of the car and factory, but I'd think a valet mode will be something we will see in the next year or so.

@Soflauthor: can the browser be locked to display that page only?

If the valet realizes that there is free internet on the big screen, that can stream video and all, you may soon get a party going on in your car... even a party of 1...

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