Just the basics
- NYC has a mobile pay app for parking that is pretty easy to use
- The app doesn’t let you re-up your parking meter session
- There is a simple workaround to double your session time
Difficulty level: Easy
Information sources: Tested by staff
The ParkNYC app offers a convenient way to pay for street parking, but it limits you to one session. That means you have to move your car to another zone after you reach your session limit, which can be annoying af.
How to double your session time at a parking meter
Many neighborhoods have mixed parking rules within a small radius. First, try to find a space on a block that has at least 2 hour parking if possible. DO NOT use the ParkNYC app.
Buy a ticket at the nearest meter, and max it out to whatever the limit is in your zone. Display the ticket on your dashboard.
Take a photo of the zone number (on the meter or on the parking signs). This isn’t absolutely necessary, because the ParkNYC app has a map search function. But I do this to be safe because I’ve found discrepancies between the zone numbers in the map vs. on signs before.
Set an alarm for 3 min. before your meter expires.
When your alarm goes off, launch the app, and pay for a full session from wherever you are, however far away you are from your car.
You have now doubled your parking time. BOOM.
Bonus: overnight parking
For when you get home too late and the only spots left are metered spots: take a photo of the zone number, set your alarm for the morning, just before parking restrictions kick in, and pay for it from bed to buy yourself an extra 1-2 hours.
Note: make sure you don’t eat an alternate side parking ticket—some zones have street cleaning every morning right before the meters start.
Do you have a tip that would make this guide better? Please share! Or if there’s something in NYC you’d like to know how to do, we got you.