How to find a parking space – and avoid the stress that Brits rank as ‘worse than a trip to the dentist’

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BRITS are more stressed about finding a parking space than a trip to the dentist.

Two-thirds of drivers have even cancelled a family outing over the fear of not being able to locate a spot, according to a new study.

 The stress of parking is 'worse than the dentist' say Brits

Getty – Contributor
The stress of parking is ‘worse than the dentist’ say Brits

And almost half of motorists even break the law by dumping their motor in spaces they shouldn’t.

The shocking stress of parking was revealed by peer-to-peer parking service Spacehopper.

Firm director Alex Walker said: “Brits say they are law abiding, but in reality it seems that half of us have been forced to park illegally just to get on with our lives.”

But it doesn’t have to be that difficult, as there are plenty of things you can do to make finding a space easier.

From apps that find a spot to paying on your phone so you don’t have to hunt for change and reserving bays in advance to Google, here are the best ways to avoid the stress.

Park in a driveway

 Apps can help you find a spot easily

Getty – Contributor
Apps can help you find a spot easily

There are several companies, for example YourParkingSpace.co.uk, out there that allow homeowners to rent their driveways out for parking.

It means you can find a super convenient spot nearby – and pre-book it in advance.

Many will be a little bit outside the city centre, too, so you don’t have to dice with the traffic.

You can pay through the website or app and book it for as long as you need.

Search with Google

Google really can do it all – almost.

If you’re in London or Manchester you can now call up the Maps app and it’ll give you a rating for each area and the chances of finding a space.

It uses historical data to judge how busy it’ll be and allows you to find a road within walking distance where it’s likely to be quieter.

And in the future the app will actually be able to find you a parking space with this function on trial in the US.

 London is one of 25 European cities to be added to Google Maps parking setting

Google
London is one of 25 European cities to be added to Google Maps parking setting

Find a local business

Similar to a homeowner renting their unused drives, there are also plenty of office car parks that are empty in the evenings or at weekends.

In fact, Spacehopper estimates there are 2.6million parking spaces owned by businesses in the UK

And around a quarter of drivers work for a company that has at least one bay free on a regular basis.

You can book one of these out online and save yourself the hassle of hunting in car parks or streets.

 Millions of Brits admit to parking illegally because they can't find anywhere else

Getty – Contributor
Millions of Brits admit to parking illegally because they can’t find anywhere else

Use an app

As well as Google, there are plenty of standalone apps – like Parkopedia – that have a bank of parking data to call upon.

You can find the nearest car park or on-street section to find out all restrictions and payments.

Some will let you know live availability and others will enable you to pre-book.

Pay-as-you-go on your smartphone

Fed-up hunting for change? Then make sure you pick an app where you can pay through it.

Many will help you find a spot and then allow you to pay with card through the system – Appy Parking is one good example.

Some councils also have links to apps like RingGo that allow you to park up and then pay via the app.

You can extend your time remotely if you’re running late, too, so no dashing back to beat the wardens.

THE UK’s parking madness

PARKING PIGS

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DRIVING MISS CRAZY

Outrage over ‘women-only’ parking spaces that are LARGER than normal and painted with HIGH HEELS

Rules of the road

Been given a ticket? Here are your rights when it comes to UK parking law

PARK LIFE

The simple trick that could save YOU £220 a month on your parking bills – and the cheapest city revealed

TICKET TO CHIDE

Driver stunned after spotting ‘F*** YOU’ printed on her parking ticket as she stopped in a council car park

PARKING PAIN

How time spent searching for parking spaces is costing UK motorists £23 BILLION each year

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