Not Everyone Hates Parking!

As more and more of our clients opt out of the traditional banquet hall as their venue of choice and move to unique and trendy spaces that our lovely city has to offer, I sometimes come across that the issue of parking or valet is avoided.  Maybe it’s because we all hate trying to find a parking spot, maybe it’s because it’s an additional expense we don’t want to think about, or maybe we think it’s a small detail in comparison to all the other moving parts of the event. BUT, parking is often your guest’s first impression or contact with your event and also their last!  Here are some ideas wether you are considering valet parking or not to add some glitz and glamour to the asphalt!

1. Fill the Bellies! Yes we know you’ve already fed your guests to their hearts content but a little end of the night treat will always go noticed. Think ice cream or food trucks or even a fun cart or stand by your valet stand or parking attendant.  The treats should be packaged to go, so that your wedding experience takes them all the way home!

2. Offer a bevvie! Depending on the weather or season your guests may appreciate either a warm or cold drink as they wait for their cars. Warm hot chocolate or cider work well for Winter & Fall weddings while Lemonade or Iced Tea are great for the summer heat.  If you want to go simple why not offer personalized water bottles – there’s something that everyone can do!

3. Dress your valet/parking attendant for the event! Now this must be done with class and discretion.  If your event has a particular theme and since parking is your guests first interaction with your event why not have these members play the part?  Your guests will notice that for you no detail is too small!

4. Logistics! Logistics! Logistics! There’s nothing worse than offering a service that is poorly managed – especially when it comes to parking!  Lots of communication with your guests is key.  Be sure to send out a confirmation note or email that includes parking information as well as a reminder of their parking voucher, or parking pass that they can print out.  Ensure that your parking attendants or valet have a guest list at the entrance in case someone does forget to bring them – it will happen! If your valet entrance or venue is difficult to find be sure to include readable maps and driving directions.

5. A small token of appreciation! It doesn’t have to be a diamond ring but a small gift or favor inside your guests cars puts the “AHMAZING” in event for a positive guest experience.  This will stay with them as a token of how wonderful your event was.  You can even take ideas 1 and 2 and take your sweet treats and bevvies and have the valet place them inside the vehicle while they are in their care.

6. Provide Heaters & Umbrellas! I know we are stating the obvious but if it’s cold or chilly at night provide enough heaters for guests to stay warm as they wait for their cars. Ensure that the valet also has umbrella’s on stand by in case it rains – nothing is worse than waiting for your car in the cold or while you’re wet!

Happy Planning from AWE!

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