This post was first published by My London on 07/04/2019.
‘No wonder our high streets are dying when car parking is so expensive’
Parking the car can cost more than the fuel it took to get there in the first place, says Angie Quinn.
There’s nothing more frustrating than popping to the local shopping centre and not being able to find a car parking space.
Oh, wait, actually, yes there is.
Leaving your vehicle in a space, going shopping and returning to discover you have to pay extravagant car parking charges.
Or having to buy an expensive car parking ticket before you’ve been dished out any hard earned cash in to the welcoming pockets of your chosen retail outlets.
This really gets my goat for many reasons.
Not so long ago I parked in The Glades and for three hours I paid around £3.40 for the privilege.
It doesn’t sound a lot of money but think how many times we do these trips over a year? It soon adds up.
Worse thing, other major shopping centres in the South East including Bluewater, Kent, and Lakeside, Essex, allow you to park free of charge.
Yep, you could browse the stores, have a coffee, watch a film, grab a bit of dinner and you don’t even need to worry how the cost of parking your Range Rover is spiralling by the minute.
Well Smart Car actually but lets stick to the point, every pound spent on parking is money that could be keeping high streets alive.
You’re already putting cash into the pockets of shop owners – who probably also have to pay high rent and rates. Let’s put that to bed for now.
In London if you want to pop down to a poundshop to grab a few household necessities, the reality is you parking could cost more than your shopping.
And this could put people off from visiting which could have a knock on affect as to why our beloved high street are disintegrating.
And it’s a vicious circle, since if I’m put off by high parking charges, those shops will take less money, meaning they shut down. Then why would I want to go shopping in the town centre instead of a huge out of town shopping centre anyway?
Also, on my little one litre engine car I probably spend more cash in paying to park my car than I do in fuel to run the thing from my house to the high street.
Why do you private car parks or council owned parking spaces think it’s OK to charge people loads of money because we are in London?
The cost of living is already more expensive for us folk.
We obviously love living here but we’re already trying to save for a house and live our best lives in the best city in the world.
We don’t need this added pressure.
Let’s not go into car parking charges in Central London that’s a whole other kettle of pricey fish.
I can also hear folk scream at this article “well get the bus then if you don’t like paying for parking”, well why should we?
We already pay a lot of bucks to get to work why shouldn’t we travel at our own convenience.
No-one wants to spend their day off waiting for buses, or riding a bike to go looking round the shops, and if you do then good for you.
I like driving to the high street listening to trashy pop music loudly and then walk the high street feeling like Julia Roberts in Pretty Women.
We love shopping, it’s an afternoon out, it’s an experience and we want to do it with as little aggro as possible.
So scrap car parking charges. It can go into the mortgage fund.