Cheap car parking is a rare find in the central business district. Whether it’s Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, finding an affordable space is like finding that elusive needle in a haystack.
In Melbourne, parking meters cost up to $5.50 an hour and in Sydney, private car parks charge up to $40 an hour. It’s no wonder drivers spend so much time circling the streets looking for a good deal.
For those of us who rely on cars to get to work or the odd city meeting, securing a cheap spot is tricky.
These CBD parking secrets are much cheaper than the average and worth taking note of next time you go to the city.
But be prepared to make a few sacrifices. It might involve arriving early to nab the early-bird prices or if the car park is on the fringes of the city, take your runners so you can enjoy the 10-minute walk in comfort.
Be warned – every private car park has its own terms and conditions. Some may ask you to leave your keys with an attendant or to park in certain areas to claim the early-bird special. Check the operator’s website or pricing signs at the car park before entry.
• $4 – 62 Latrobe St, CBD.
• $1 – Meaden St, Southbank.
• $8 – Council House, 200 Little Collins St.
• $12 – 380 Latrobe St, 340 Latrobe St.
• $13 – 224 Latrobe St, 179 Little Bourke St.
• $14 – 383 Latrobe St, 250 Elizabeth St, 150 Lonsdale St, 180 Russell St, 222 Russell St, 517 Flinders Lane, Melbourne Central, Atrium/Lonsdale car park, 114 Flinders Lane.
• $8 – Domain Car Park (St Marys Road)
• $9 – Goulburn St (cnr and Elizabeth St), 2 Cathedral St (part of the Cook and Phillip Park complex)
• $15 – 320 Harris St (Darling Harbour), 528 Kent St, 329 Pitt St (Rialto Square).
• $16 – 2 Quay St (Haymarket)
• $17 – Cnr Kent, Market and Sussex Sts, 175 Liverpool St, 2 Macquarie St (Opera House), 146 Arthur St, North Sydney.
• Free – Waterfront Place, 1 Eagle St (first hour only), Waterfront Place Port Cochere, 61 Petrie Terrace, 405 Logan Rd.
• $5 – Stones Corner Village, 405 Logan Rd.
• $13 – Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Cnr Merivale and Glenelg Sts (South Bank).
• $16 – 55 Little Edward St, Wickham Terrace car park, between Wickham Terrace and Turbot St (rooftop).
With most capital city councils pushing for increased usage of public transport and limiting the number of car spaces, CBD parking is set to become more expensive.
In Melbourne the state government will introduce a congestion levy from January 1, meaning private car park operators will lift their prices.
Colliers International’s report in 2012 on car parking in the next decade shows that the supply slowed between 2006 and 2011 and is predicted to decrease further during the next decade.
The report reveals that 127 car spaces would be created in Sydney before next year, 700 in Melbourne and 274 in Brisbane. This compares to a rise of 100,000 city workers in the past five years.
Not surprisingly, the report reveals that parking rates in Australian CBDs are among the most expensive in the world.
Sydney makes the top 10 for monthly parking rates, while Melbourne and Sydney CBDs are in the top four for the daily rate.
Find a great parking deal for your city on Parking Deals Australia.