Four Must-Know Facts About NYC Parking Tickets

NYC parking tickets

Summary & Quick Facts

  • Parking tickets are a huge cash cow for New York City and issues some of the highest numbers in the country.
  • The Alternate Side Parking violation is the most ticketed offence in NYC.
  • NYC is a tow away zone, your car can potentially be towed at any time.
  • Manhattan is the most ticketed borough in NYC.

Everyone Knows Driving In NYC Is Tough.

Driving in New York City can definitely be one of the more daunting things New Yorkers have to deal with. In fact, it’s no secret that driving in the city is simply downright stressful. It has some of the most expensive gas in the nation, crazy amounts of traffic and congestion, and not to mention the all cryptic traffic signs that drivers encounter. Nevertheless, those dreaded and, expensive NYC parking tickets sit high on the list of stresses when it comes to driving. While we all don’t like parking tickets, many of us are not the most informed about them. It’s easy to take them for granted, but parking tickets have their own little secrets. Take a second to check out these four facts about parking tickets in NYC so you can have a much deeper understanding why they’re such a big deal here.


1. NYC Parking Tickets Are A Cash Cow!

cash cow nyc parking tickets

The issuing of parking tickets is a huge cash cow for New York City. The city issues the highest number of parking tickets in the country with a total value of over a half a billion dollars. This combined with the immense traffic, congestion, and lack of parking spaces for cars makes NYC parking one of the most competitive and expensive in the country. 

If you are not trying to give away your cash to this jackpot, check out our article on the best ways to avoid NYC parking tickets!


2.  The City Makes The Most Of Street Cleaning

nyc parking tickets street sweeping
Parking tickets for street cleaning or alternate side parking violations deal the most blows to the wallets of NYC drivers.  In 2017 the city issued over 1.5 million parking tickets for alternate side parking alone.

Code 21 in the NYC Parking Violation list states that drivers cannot park in any space that has a sign, street marking or traffic control device for NYC street cleaning. Basically,  drivers must clear parked cars on one side of New York City streets. This usually occurs once or twice a week in most neighborhoods across all five boroughs. Violating alternate side parking costs $65 if you live in Manhattan on 96th Street or below and $45 in all other areas including Brooklyn, The Bronx, and Queens.

Definitely try to take advantage of the alternate side parking rules when it is not in effect. The city suspends alternate side parking for holidays, severe weather and other emergencies. When the rules are suspended, drivers will be able to park their cars at no stopping, no standing and no parking zones UNLESS the rules are enforced seven days a week  To learn more about ASP check out our article on the topic, it may save you from a headache and a hurtin’ on your wallet!


3. The City Will Tow Your Car At Any Place, Any Time!

nyc parking tickets tow

Watching a tow truck take your car can be a really big nightmare for drivers in NYC.  Arguably, it is just as annoying, if not more, than parking tickets themselves. If you think you can park anywhere in the city without having to worry about your car, think again! When it comes to towing in New York City, it’s open season, unfortunately. In fact, you don’t even have to rack up a lot of NYC  parking tickets to get your car towed.  It’s all started here in the NY State Vehicle and Traffic Law [Section 1204(b)]:

“Whenever any police officer …or authority finds a vehicle unattended where it constitutes an  obstruction to traffic, or any place where stopping, standing or parking is prohibited, such officer is hereby authorized to provide  for the removal of such vehicle, semi-trailer or trailer to a garage, automobile pound or other place of safety.”

It may not be the best idea for drivers to pull actions like our ambitious friend above to get your car out of this jam. Still, drivers must pay a hefty price to get cars from the pound. Check out our article to find out everything you need to know about the tow in NYC.


4. Manhattan Is The Most Ticketed Borough

nyc parking tickets in manhattan

Drivers who are unfortunate enough to regularly cruise the streets of Manhattan beware! Drivers rack up more parking tickets in Manhattan than any other borough in the city.  If you are driving in the Financial District or on the Upper East Side, watch out! Drivers have the highest chance of getting a parking ticket in these two Manhattan neighborhoods. On the flip side, drivers in Stuyvesant Town and Harlem get off a little easier with some of the lowest issued ticket statistics. The two Manhattan neighborhoods saw an average of three and five tickets per parking space, respectively.

Overall, a little over $200 million in parking tickets are written in Manhattan on average. If you break this down, that’s nearly half of the approximately $500 million in parking fines levied on all vehicles in the city. Adding insult to injury, the average ticket price in Manhattan $79.82.  This is at least $9 more per ticket than other boroughs.

If you are one of the unfortunate drivers to get a parking ticket in the city, definitely take some time to look at our articles on how to pay or fight your parking tickets. You’ll be glad you did!

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