If you’ve reserved parking with SpotHero before, we don’t need to tell you that parking the old-fashioned way isn’t very efficient. But just how big of a difference does SpotHero make in the way you live your life? Well, as it turns out: pretty big.
The average American driver wastes 17 hours every year searching for parking. That adds up to $73 billion in lost time, fuel and emissions searching for parking across all drivers nationally.
But our drivers are anything but average. Thanks to technology, finding parking doesn’t have to be nearly this difficult. When you plan ahead and reserve your spot using the SpotHero app, you cut that search time down to zero. 17 whole hours every single year.
But if that $73 billion tells us anything, many drivers are still relying on the old method of praying to the parking gods and hoping for the best. This strategy usually leads to circling the block a half dozen times and a lot of wasted time.
So just how long does it take to find parking in your city? Let’s dig in.
Parking Search Time
The latest study* on parking search times reveals that drivers spend nine minutes on average per trip searching for parking.
Search times are highest in New York City, clocking in at 15 minutes for on-street parking and 13 minutes for off-street parking. San Francisco and Los Angeles are close behind with both averaging 12 minutes for on-street parking search time and 11 minutes for off-street parking.
Time wasted is often amplified due to the lack of information. Drivers (who don’t use SpotHero) simply don’t know where parking is available, which increases wasted time.
Drivers who do use SpotHero, on the other hand, save significant time per trip and overall.
Take this SpotHero customer, for example.
“Great app and service. Have used it three times over the past two weeks in three different cities (DC, Baltimore, Philly) and the experience has been flawless each time. Lot/garage directions and descriptions are very clear and accurate – even includes a photo to make it easier to find. Easy in, space reserved, easy out … no more driving around looking for a lot or garage!”
Parking Search Cost
Parking search time adds up in the long run, especially if you’re driving in a major city.
The average driver in New York City spends 107 hours searching for parking per year, versus the national average of 17 hours. Drivers in Los Angeles spend 85 hours searching for parking per year, followed by San Francisco drivers who waste 83 hours. In Chicago, the average driver spends 56 hours per year looking for parking.
A couple minutes wasted here and there really makes a difference. No one has that kind of time to just throw away. So what is the cost of all this wasted time?
The report converted annual hours spent searching for parking into an economic cost. Not surprisingly, New York had the highest search cost of $2,243 per driver per year, over six times the national average of $345. The cost per driver in Los Angeles is $1,785 per year, and in San Francisco, the cost per driver is $1,735. In Chicago, the cost is $1,174 per year.
That’s a lot of money no matter how you slice it. If you can eliminate that search time entirely through a parking reservation app like SpotHero, think of the cost savings over the course of a year or more.
Our customer Melanie experienced the savings first-hand:
“I can’t even begin to describe how useful this app is. I live in the burbs and work in the city. SpotHero has saved me $1000s of dollars by helping me find convenient parking in the spur of the moment near my job! I have shown this app to everyone that I can, even people I don’t know, telling that they can save so much money by just using SpotHero.”
The good news is that you can park smarter with SpotHero. Reserve your spot in advance and know exactly where you’re going and how much you’ll pay before you get there. You’ll save time and money – proving that parking doesn’t have to be a pain.
Get parking in your city today.
*Download the full report from INRIX here.