Looking for a car space at Christmas is the stuff of nightmares but it doesn’t have to be, we have some parking survival tips writes Geraldine Herbert
1. The early bird
The early bird not only gets the worm but also the best parking spots so in order to secure a decent parking spot leave the house as early as you can.
2. Consider using Park & Ride
Avail of a stress-free trip into town by parking your car at one of the Park and Ride points and jump on a Luas. If there is no park and ride available in your area consider parking on the outskirts and using public transport for the last few kilometres.
3. Book a space online
Often you can pre-book a space at your chosen car park, not only does this usually work out cheaper than paying the regular hourly rate but you can also skip the pay machine queues.
4. Share a car
Car sharing is a great way of reducing motoring costs and stress at this time of year so why not share a car with a friend or relative who is planning to do some last-minute Christmas shopping too.
5. Go at night
Extended shopping hours means you can avail of quieter roads, car parks and shops if you opt to shop late at night.
Resist the urge to drive around looking for a car space in a busy car park – mathematicians estimate if you wait in one spot, a space will become free within 6 minutes.
7. Reverse into a space
Where room is limited it is much easier to reverse into a car space than it is to drive straight in, it simply takes practice. It is also much safer to drive out of a space as it avoids backing into unknown traffic when your field of vision is severely limited.
8. Stay Safe
Park in a well-lit area, beside other cars, where all-round visibility is good, and have your keys out and ready when returning. Ideally, opt for car parks monitored by CCTV or security personnel and remember any high-value items should be placed in the car boot – make sure nothing is visible that could attract unwanted attention. Note that failure to do this could invalidate any insurance claim.
9. Don’t overstay
If you are using pay and display remember to set an alarm on your phone to remind you what time it runs out, the trials and tribulations of Christmas shopping means time can slip by without you noticing.
16th December 2019