Parking in NYC is time (and often money) consuming and often annoying, but you won’t feel true happiness until you find a free available parking spot in Manhattan.
1. Free Parking
There are plenty of free and legal street-side parking spots in NYC, but they are usually taken. If you find an empty parking spot, look for street signs indicating cleaning schedules or other restrictions. Note that these signs might be hiding on nearby streets.
If you are not familiar with NYC parking regulations, available and forbidden parking spots get prepared using the following websites and apps:
NYC Parking Regulations – enter the street location and find information about available (and unavailable) parking nearby, signs and regulations.
NYC Best Parking – a parking search engine with a map display of all the parking spots (street, garages, parking meters), by date, street address, intersection neighborhood or attraction.
Smooth Parking – a map of NYC parking spots, organized by location and date, focuses on free and metered parking.
2. Parking Lots
When getting tired of looking for a free parking place, it makes sense to use the services of a nearby parking garage. Note that the rates may change significantly from one place to another, and can change by the hour, day or on special holidays, so it is recommended to compare prices beforehand. Also beware of traps hidden in the little letters of big signs or you’ll find yourself paying a lot more than you planned.
Useful Websites & Apps:
NYC Best Parking – as mentioned above, the website and iPhone and android app displays parking garages rates and locations.
IconParking – the owner of over 200 parking facilities in Manhattan has a useful website and app, displaying parking lots rates by address, neighborhood, tourist attraction or a Broadway show and offering coupons and special promotions for daily or group parking.
CentralParking – a major NYC parking brand, offering parking spots in all NYC boroughs as well as in New Jersey; its website displays their parking lots rates and deals by address and attraction.
3. Meter Parking
Meter parking is probably the best way to park in NYC and there are plenty of meters and street-meters across the city. Additionally, the old quarters-only meters were replaced by the new muni-meters, which now also accept dollar coins and credit card.
How to park using the NYC muni-meter?
There are two types of parking meters in NYC: the more common Pay and Display meter, where you pick parking time, pay, print a receipt and display it on the car dashboard; and Pay and Retain, available mostly on off-street parking spots, where you enter the parking space number into the meter, pick time, pay and keep the receipt.
Parking in NYC can be managed if you do a research before and use common sense. Do you want to rent a car and test your NYC parking skills? Contact our Manhattan & Queens car rental agency to find out about rates.