This man in this video looks honest. And the only thing valet workers really care about is the tip.
When I was new at valet parking I gave away hundreds of cars without seeing a claim ticket. That's how the more experienced valets appeared to do it. So I followed their example.
I just thought: "Who the hell is going to steal a car here?" I mean, we had surveillance cameras right there. If a valet customer got alarmed because I presented the keys without seeing a claim ticket, I'd say "You look honest. Plus we have the cameras." And I'd point to 4 cameras. Or I'd say "I remember you. I know this is your car."
But later I learned that those cameras were old, and the footage was grainy. And I learned that some people accidentally claim the wrong car, and then drive away.
I began to get more assertive in asking for claim tickets. But if somebody was carrying a ten or twenty dollar bill and said they couldn't find their ticket in a sincere, seemingly authentic way, I would just let them have the car—without hassle—and take the tip.
I was getting exploited at a pay rate of $3.83 an hour. There was no way I was going to jeopardize that tip by being a hard-ass about the missing claim ticket.
There were also times when I just couldn't wait for somebody to go through all their pockets, or through their whole purse looking for this little piece of paper with a number on it. We'd be going down in flames. Large crowds of irritated people would be waiting 30 or 40 minutes for us to get their cars. I had no time whatsoever to dally. So, if they acted like it was their car, I'd give them the keys and get them out of the driveway. Then I would run like crazy for the next car, and maybe do the same thing again.
By the way, a valet parked car was just stolen this way in Australia. Somebody acted confident and asked for the car. It's gone! Here's the story...