Tips for Finding Hassle-Free Washington DC Parking

The capital of the United States, Washington DC, is a fun place to be, with so many options to explore and wander around. There is a lot more than just towering skyscrapers and federal buildings like the Capitol, White House, and the Supreme Court when it comes to Washington D.C. Yes, it is true that the buildings mentioned above are of prime importance and make Washington D.C. stand out from the rest of the cities. However, DC, located on the shores of the beautiful Potomac River, between the states of Maryland and Virginia. The only downside to being a treasure cove of activity is that it is pretty challenging to find affordable Washington DC parking spaces vacant, around the clock in D.C.

From the hordes of people visiting the multiple government buildings to the many employees parking at the city’s best spots, the problems are many when it comes to finding Washington DC parking garages. So, should you leave your car for good and consider not driving at all? Not at all, for we have you covered with some exclusive parking hacks that will let you enjoy hassle-free Washington DC parking. All you need to do is follow this parking guide and chance are you would get to park at a Washington DC parking garage without breaking a sweat.   

Pre-Book Washington DC Parking  

Even if you follow all the tips we will cover in this article and go for drive-in parking; chances are pretty slim for you to have a guaranteed parking spot. Why? The answer is pretty short and simple! Others would follow the same tips and tricks to get the best parking spots in Washington DC. However, suppose you pre-book your Washington DC parking in advance through or the Way App. In that case, you can get your hands on a guaranteed parking space without worrying about parking availability.

Also Read: 5 Tips for Finding Cheap San Diego Airport Parking

What’s even better is that the Way App lets you read reviews, check parking availability, and compare prices. You can get multiple options for proximity Washington DC parking when you go for pre-booking of Washington DC parking.  

Residents Can Apply for Residential Parking Permit  

If you are a resident of Washington DC and still unaware of the Residential Permit Parking (RPP), it’s high time you started researching. Spending time researching D.C. Street parking can help you find info about permits like the Residential Parking Permit (RPP).

The program, which started in 1970, is a joint venture by Public Works, Motor Vehicles Department, and the District Departments of Transportation. Having a valid Residential Parking Permit lets you park on residential blocks that you live. This is a cheaper alternative for people living in busy streets where D.C. Street parking is hard to come by.   

Not a Resident? Apply for Visitor Parking Pass  

Being the country’s capital city, many people living across the country would sometimes have to travel towards Washington DC, making it a hectic place to be in. While RPP is applicable only for residents who have vehicle registration documents and residency proof, the Visitor Parking Pass (VPP) allows guests of district residents to park across any Residential Parking Permit (RPP) zones for more than two hours.

If you are a visitor who is arriving at the city on holidays or during off-hours of Residential Parking Permit, you will not need to apply for a Visitor Parking Pass.  

Also Read: 3 Things You Must Do Before Booking DIA Parking

Make Use of Metered Parking in D.C.  

There are approximately more than 18,000 metered parking spaces in Washington DC that are enforced and operated by the District Department of Transportation (DDOT).  Metered parking is one of the cheapest options for Washington DC parking. However, most of these D.C. Street parking spaces get sold out as soon as they become available. While it is easier to get access to metered parking spaces in D.C. located farther away, it is not the same for those located closer to government offices.

On average, the majority of the metered Washington DC Street parking garages charge rates as low as $2.30 per hour. Most of the metered parking spaces in D.C. are operational from 7 AM to 6:30 PM.   

Be on the lookout for D.C.’s Street Cleaning Schedules.  

Just as how important it is to find a secure D.C. Street parking spot; it is equally essential to be on the lookout for legal Washington DC parking spaces. The district administration is pretty vigilant and detecting possible parking violations, and you could end up with expensive parking citations if you are not careful enough. You will have to shell out $45 if you are not careful when you park and end up blocking access for a street sweeper.

This is probably one of the easiest parking violations to avoid if you know the street cleaning hours of the spot you choose. Regular street cleaning schedules take place between 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM and 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM. Avoid careless parking during these hours, and you could have a hassle-free D.C. Street parking experience.   

Explore the possibilities of temporary parking permits  

Before going for Washington DC parking, it would be a good idea to explore the possibilities of the many temporary parking permits the city of Washington DC provides to visitors and residents alike. Contractual Employee Temporary Parking Permit, Health Care Provider Temporary Parking Permit, and the Reciprocity Permit for Temporary Residents and Part-Time District Residents all make various parking needs of guests and contractors, looking for parking in residential sections of the district, a lot less complex.

Also Read: Where to find parking at DTW Airport

Most of these parking permits are also available for short-term visitors arriving at the district for particular needs and short-term stays.   

Why you need to check out the many Washington DC parking garages  

In the post-pandemic world, contactless parking is one of the most sought-after parking modes in the country. While there are plenty of Washington DC parking garages that provide contactless parking, there are even more that do not offer this facility as of now. Suppose it’s a parking space that gives you premium facilities like contactless parking, covid-19 compliances, around-the-clock camera surveillance, ADA/aisle access, and paved, well-maintained lots you seek. In that case, you need to check out the many Washington DC parking garages listed on websites like Not only do these parking garages let you park for some of the best rates in the city, but they also ensure that you get to enjoy an entirely hassle-free parking experience.