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Avoiding Common City Parking Pitfalls

Circling block after block, being cut off for the spot you were waiting for, and finally paying $20 for a parking spot in a lot…we’ve all been there. Parking in the city isn’t for the faint of heart. However, digital advances have made city parking a little easier.

city parking

Hey, that’s my spot! Hoping to snag a spot on the cheap? SpotHero and ParkWhiz allow you to book a parking spot at a discount in advance, so you won’t have to circle the block or fight another car for a spot.

Two words: street sweeping. Honestly, who can keep track of where their car needs to be parked (or not parked) on a daily basis? The last thing you want to do when you get home from work is check the street signs and set an alarm on your phone to move your car in 23 hours. In Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego, Metromile pay-per-mile car insurance customers receive street sweeping alerts to their smartphone, so they can avoid pesky tickets or worse, having their car towed.

Anyone have change? Stop looking under your seats for spare change to feed the meter. You can now pay the meter using an app like Parkmobile or PayByPhone.

Find your car. Parking in the city can mean a different spot each night. Trouble remembering where you last parked? Use Metromile’s car location tracker to find your car, and get walking instructions to get there! It’s even been used to recover stolen cars (knock on wood).

With Metromile’s pay-per-mile car insurance, not only can you find your car and get street sweeping alerts, you can also get the low-down on your trips and trends, fuel levels, car health and more. Plus, you could save a ton of money on car insurance! Get a free quote here.

Buckle Up: City Driving Disasters

Driving in the city is no walk in the park, and comes with a lot of annoyances and errors. It’s either weaving in and out of rush hour traffic or searching for parking that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg and avoiding parking tickets. Luckily, digital innovations are making city driving a little easier.


Dude, where’s my car?
When circling the four-block radius near your apartment over and over again looking for a spot, you end up parking in a different location each night. The next day, you find yourself scrambling to remember where you left that piece of machinery. With the Metromile Pulse (given to all per-mile insurance customers), a car locator will keep you notified on your smartphone on where your car is at all time. Metromile has even helped customers recover their stolen car with this feature!

Orange is not the new black
We’ve all thought about what would happen if you just ripped up that orange envelope left on your dashboard when you accidentally parked on street sweeping day, forgot to pay the meter, or turned your wheels the wrong way on a hill. In this digital age, ripping up the ticket isn’t an option, but avoiding the ticket all together is! Here are some hot tips:

    • Nothing is more confusing than street sweeping days. In Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego, the Pulse will send a street sweeping alert to your smartphone if you are parked on that street and can save you that big fine.
    • Many cities now have mobile payments available for their parking meters (such as Parkmobile or PayByPhone) making feeding the meter that much easier, even if it runs out while you’re still enjoying dinner.
    • In the Bay Area and other hilly cities, remember to turn your wheels in a way that if the car were to roll, the curb would stop the fall. So, parking uphill you would turn your wheels away from the curb, and parking downhill you would turn your wheels towards the curb. Then pull the parking brake.
    • Speed racer slow down! Apps like Waze, Escort and Garmin U.S.A pull in data for red light cameras and gives users the ability to tag police-car locations to help driver avoid those pesky driving tickets.

One way…or another
You might not admit it, but you’ve probably been there. You’re cruising to Crossfit, belting out your favorite jams, when you spot a shortcut, take a left and– you’re headed the wrong way on a one-way street. Don’t panic, but quickly assess the situation before making your next move to pull over and circle back. Download the Google Maps or Waze app to be sure you have the shortest – and safest – trip to your destination.

With Metromile’s pay-per-mile car insurance offering, not only could you save a ton of money on insurance, but you also get access to helpful things like sweet sweeping alerts and a car locator. Metromile’s smart driving app gives you information on trips and trends, fuel levels, car health diagnoses and more. Learn more here!