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Secrets of Downtown Parking – Revealed!

Countless foodies, cultural junkies, art/café lovers, and ultra-cool fashionettes flock to downtown San Diego 7 days a week. And, they do this in spite of the bad rap that all beautiful cities have – the dreaded hunt for a parking space!

Parking will always be a challenge for those who love downtown and the city planners who want to increase space and efficiency. But, for savvy downtown visitors the battle for parking doesn’t have to be the nightmare it’s cracked up to be!

If you want to know where the best parking places are, we’ve uncovered some amazing tips that will surely eliminate your FOP (fear of parking) once and for all.

Tip # 1:
Meter Parking
Parking meters are active Monday through Saturday from 8 AM until 6 PM (unless posted otherwise). The time limits and hourly rates are posted on each meter. Meters accept change, debit/credit cards and pre-paid parking meter debit cards available from the city.

Tip # 2:
Street Parking
The most important thing you need to know about street parking is to know the color codes and remember to pay attention to the signs and to understand the meaning of the curb colors. Time limit parking zones allow one or two hours of parking and are designated by signs. A red curb means no stopping at any time; blue means parking for disabled persons only; white means passenger unloading only; yellow means commercial loading only; and a green curb designates short term parking for the amount of time stenciled on the curb or posted on a sign. The zones and color-coded curbs are in effect 8 AM to 6 PM, Sundays and city holidays.

Tip # 3:
Surface Lots and Parking Structures
In addition to street parking, there are so many lots and structures to choose from. You will see Ace Parking and other vendors on every other corner! Simply click on the app called San Diego Best Parking for a detailed map and pricing based on your date/time of arrival.

Tip # 4:
Horton Plaza – the best tip of all! The parking structure at Horton Plaza is easy, convenient, and offers great pricing:
5 AM – 8PM: 1 hour free and $2 per 15 minutes (Evening flat rate: Sun – Wed $10/Thurs – Saturday $20)

Tip # 5:
Forget about parking all together and take advantage of back to basics/inexpensive alternatives! Plan Your Trip
• The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System
• The Coaster Commuter Train
• The Trolley Line

If you want speed and convenience, you can always count on Uber and Lyft!

All we can say is, when you want the best downtown has to offer, including a “beautiful hair day”, your spot is waiting for you!