- NYC City Parking Guide
Figure Out Where to Find Parking
New York has a little something for everyone; from being the home to some of the most iconic and recognizable attractions, like the Statue of Liberty to the epicenter of fashion and fan fair, Ford Models, Inc. Unlike being in Vegas, you don't want to stay just 3 days, but staying longer isn't always affordable. One thing we all know about New York, it ain't cheap! You may find popular travel guides that advise visiting the Big Apple in the off season as a way to save you money...well, that's hullabaloo. The way you save money in New York is to cut down cost on the "little things" that actually rack up incremental costs that you just don't realize until the trip is coming to a close. For instance, don't stay in a hotel in Manhattan, stay at FRBO (for rent by owner) spot or an AirBnB in a nearby neighborhood that provides easy access, like Queens. Driving can ensure you get to take in more sites, but then there's parking. You could try and circle about and figure our street parking, but that's pretty much a nightmare waiting to happen. There's also the Park Smart card, but then you could end up wasting money if you don't use it or can't locate related parking. If you're planning on hanging out and taking in the sites a combination of driving and public transportation is probably your best bet. So finding a parking garage that is central to the area you want to explore is the key. You can save up to 50% off drive up rates using SpotHero and avoid the average $65 ticket that New York has as a parking meter fine.
Sad but true, there's no way to visit all the boroughs, museums, parks, and take in a show if you simply rely on public transport.
Speaking of the 5 boroughs, when visiting, knowing the boroughs means knowing what sites you're going to see and potential options on avoiding parking downtown. So let's start with a breakdown of the boroughs:
9 times out of 10 when people say "I'm going to New York" or even think of New York City, they're ultimately thinking of Manhattan. The most well known borough, it also is home to the most talked about neighborhoods in all of NYC. The main neighborhoods include Downtown, the Financial District, Midtown (East & West), the Upper East Side, and the Upper West Side. Want to know what these places all have in common? There’s no street parking and parking is free on Sundays. Garage and lot parking are the most popular options, and with good reason, this area is highly condensed. Spans of green from parks cover various areas and then expanses of skyscrapers, leaving very little street to park on. Dizzy's Club Gillespie is a great Jazz spot to visit if you're downtown, but make reservations and get parking in advance, because the only other way to get there is a $40 cab ride and you can't get in if you're late. Maybe you've heard about the amazing food in Chinatown, if you're not on the train or live in the area; you'll need to find street parking a few blocks away, New York blocks that is. That means like 2 miles out. Ouch!
Long story short, no matter what part of Manhattan you're visiting, there aren't a ton of street parking options and the battle royal that ensues to occupy a space is intense. Not to mention that the majority of street parking locations have time limits. 2-3 hours max. This is strictly enforced and if it results in a ticket/tow you're looking at no less than $270 to get your car out. Try illegally parking in a Chelsea residential spot, the residential ticket fine plus tow is around $400.
This is an area of NYC that is nothing to be scoffed at. It may not have all the glitz and glamour of Manhattan or all the hype of Brooklyn, but oh the Bronx is where the Yankees became a dynasty, it's the home of hip hop and why when people say, "I'm from the block..." everyone knows they're from the Bronx. It's where street cred meets culture and elegance. Golfers know the Bronx for Van Courtland Park and outdoors enthusiasts love the Bronx because Pellham Bay Park is the largest park in New York, not Central Park. The Botanical gardens, the Zoo and Edgar Allen Poe's cottage are all sites worth seeing. The truth is the Bronx neighborhoods have hidden gems that most New Yorkers aren't even aware of; so rarely see. But, there's another reason they don't see them, you must have a car. Because the Bronx is not overcrowded like some other areas, a car is all but necessary to enjoy these sites. In this area of NYC you either Street Park or pay to park on site. You could park in a nearby parking garage, but unlike Times Square with lit signs for every venue, these parking garages are mostly hidden. Don't fret, we can save the day and navigate you directly to your parking spot. Download the SpotHero app and don’t worry about circling the block. Our app makes finding parking a breeze. You won’t have to fret about cash in hand either, because let’s face it; New York likes to deal in cold hard cash. For your safety, no cash is ever exchanged.
Hands down the most heavily populated borough in all of NYC, Brooklyn is home to the Brooklyn bridge and is worth visiting since there are some great historic buildings and elegant row homes to be seen. Site seeing in Brooklyn consists of the standard museum, bridge, and nieghborhood tours. If you happen to visit Brooklyn, rather than catching the 5 train, just take your car over the bridge, capture a few pictures and head over to Coney Island. Then if you decide to do a neighborhood tour, you can do a driving tour, because Brooklyn is not very walkable.
Queens is the largest borough in all of NYC. This New York City borough is also the second highest in population after Brooklyn, New York. Queens, NYC is extremely diverse when it comes to architectural styles of buildings and the different character of each neighborhood. In The Rockaways, you will find a variety of beautiful beach locations including Breezy Point and Rockaway Beach. Northwestern Queens is home to popular neighborhoods such as Astoria and Elmhurst. The New York City neighborhood of Flushing can be found in Northern Queens and Bellaire in Central Queens.
Staten Island, New York offers a suburban, small-town feel in comparison with the over four New York City boroughs. It is also the least populated borough in NYC. Staten Island is broken up into four main areas including Northern Staten Island, Eastern Staten Island, Southern Staten Island and Western Staten Island. Popular neighborhoods within this New York City borough are Brighton Heights in North Staten Island, Concord in the Eastern area, Annadale in Southern Staten Island Bloomfield in Western Staten Island.
Parking in New York can be a hassle if you are not familiar with the different types of parking, rules and regulations set by the specific neighborhood and borough. Some types of parking in New York include free street parking, metered street parking, valet parking, parking garages and/or parking in your own driveway or parking spot if one is available to you.
In most residential areas of New York, you will find metered street parking. When parking on the street, it is important to ensure that the meter is paid for the amount of time that you will be parking there or you run the risk of getting a parking ticket. Street sweepers are also common in New York, making it important to ensure that you are parking on the correct side of the street in the neighborhood that you're visiting. Parking on the wrong side of the street during street sweeping times can also result in a parking ticket or possibility of being towed.
Parking garages in New York allow you to park in either an above ground or underground garage for a fee. Parking in a parking garage is usually the easiest option to find a parking spot quickly. Parking garages also eliminate the need of parallel parking on the street which tends to result in a little bumper car action. Don’t get a new paint job or ruin your new BMW. Park for as little as $7 with the click of a button, scan your phone and don’t worry about damage to your vehicle in one of our partner garages.
Parking Costs in New York
The amount that you pay for parking in New York will depend on where in New York you are and the type of parking that you are using. Metered parking will typically cost less than a parking garage for those who are parking for shorter periods of time. For example, metered parking may cost 25 cents for 30 minutes of parking while a parking garage may charge anywhere from $5 to $10 for an hour or two of parking.
Parking in New York does have its risks if you are not familiar with parking rules in New York. Different parking violations will result in different parking fines. Parking in New York at a meter can result in parking violations if parking there for more than the allowed amount of time. This is called, "feeding the meter." This type of parking ticket can run up to $65. Parking at an expired meter in New York can also cost $65 in parking fines. Double parking on any street in New York results in a $115 parking ticket. Other types of parking tickets can cost anywhere from $35 to $515 in parking fines.
In New York, a boot can be applied to your vehicle for not paying your NYC parking tickets. This is usually done when you have more than $350 in outstanding NYC parking tickets. Boots from parking tickets can be removed and returned at various NYC locations for a $159 parking fee for the boot and a $75 parking fee for the Sheriff’s execution.
When parking illegally, you vehicle may be towed. This parking violation can have costly parking tickets in addition to the parking violation towing expenses. A regular tow fee for illegally parking is $185.00 with a heavy duty towing fee for parking at $370.00. A $20 overnight storage fee is charged for parking the vehicle at the storage facility.
Upcoming Events in NYC
Most Popular in NYC
Times Square - Get your fill of the bright lights of the city w/ parking as low as $15.
Central Park - No matter what end you enter, we've got options as low as $12.
Empire State Building - The observation deck is amazing and with $11 parking just 5 minutes away, book in less than a minute.
MMA (Metropolitan Art Museum) - Enjoy the museum and central park all in one day.
Battery Park - 25-acre park at the southern tip of Manhattan. Park for under $30.
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