Pseudo-parking in Kyiv: how to fight and how can you park for free?
And also what to do with establishments that turn municipal parking lots into "visitors only" areas?
What is the problem?
With the start of the lockdown, many people in Kyiv had to give up using public transport. Taxi prices doubled instantly, and traffic jams filled the city. Even at lunchtime, when the capital is the least congested with transport, some streets are standing still.
Nevertheless, there is no other way out for car owners than to move on their vehicles. Here comes another problem: where to park your car?
- In the city center, where most of the offices are located, tow trucks operate, and in municipal parking lots, there are scammers posing as valets and illegally collecting money from drivers. So, for example, if you want to park near Bessarabska Square, you'll be overtaken by people who demand 40 hryvnias per hour of parking without providing a receipt.
- Another problem: municipal parking lots allegedly "rent" to restaurants and offices, blocking common parking spaces with cones and prohibiting parking for "non-customers" of the establishment.
Read on for what to do in such cases, how to pay for parking, and where to find it.
What is the solution?
First, remember: city valet parking was canceled a few years ago. Ask the person who allegedly manages the parking lot for a check; if they refuse to give you it, then the person is standing there illegally. You have the right to call the police, but practice shows that after you voice your intentions out loud, the fake parkers leave.
Second, check if the parking lot is municipal. A map with municipal parking is available on the Kyivtransparkservice website.
The map is divided into zones: in the purple (center), one hour of parking will cost you 35 hryvnia, the highest price per hour of parking; in the green one, 25 hryvnia per hour. In the remaining unpainted part of the city, parking costs UAH 5 per hour.
How does it work?
The owner of the municipal parking lots is Kyivtransparkservice. This means that you can pay for parking in a municipal parking lot in two ways:
By card through the mobile application "Kyiv Digital"
- You need to go to the "Hourly parking" menu, indicate the car number. The user can add multiple car numbers to the app. Then, before starting parking, you need to select the one you need in the hourly parking menu.
- Parking will be determined by geolocation, or you can choose from the list yourself.
- Click "Start parking." After that, the application starts counting the time spent on the site.
- To end parking, you need to click "End parking."
If the parking isn't completed by 22:00, the application will send a reminder of the incomplete session.
Payment for parking services is charged for the first hour, then for every half hour. Funds are debited automatically when the total amount for hourly parking reaches UAH 100. If the amount is less, then the payment is debited on the 1st day of the next month. The user can add a Masterpass wallet. The payment for parking is debited automatically from the linked card. You can pay for parking by card, Apple Pay, or GooglePay.
With cash via EasyPay UA parking meter
Such parking meters should be near every municipal parking lot.
- Find the service "Payment for parking services, Kyiv" in the terminal, indicated by an icon with a capital letter "P."
- Enter the car number.
- Find the parking address. Start entering the address: the drop-down list will show all the options according to your request from the first letters entered.
- Indicate the planned duration of parking (after an hour of parking, you can pay for 30-minute periods, that is, for 1 hour 30 minutes, etc.).
- Enter the amount into the bill acceptor of the terminal and click "Pay."
- Print, take a photo, or send to your email a receipt for paying for parking (parking is considered paid from the moment you receive the receipt).
Who doesn't need to pay for parking?
In some cases, municipal parking is free for everyone. Parking fees apply only on weekdays between 8:00 am – 10:00 pm. On weekends, parking at paid municipal parking lots in Kyiv is free. Also, you don't need to pay for parking on Independence Day, Constitution Day, Kyiv Day, and Victory Day over Nazism.
Also, according to the rules for Kyiv improvement, you can park for free if you are:
- persons with disabilities;
- veterans of the Great Patriotic War and other local wars;
- participants in the combat operations of the ATO/JFO;
- family members of the deceased defenders of Ukraine.
At the same time, to park in Kyiv for free, combatants should contact Kyivtransparkservice. There, their cars will be taken to the necessary information bases. In this case, when determining the right to free parking, the link will be created to the vehicle, and not to the identity of the owner. Indeed, by the time the inspector arrives, the driver may not be nearby. So the inspector will simply check the vehicle against the appropriate database.
Even more useful solutions
What if the parking lot "belongs to the establishment"?
- If the parking lot is "bought out" or "only for the visitors of the establishment," ask to show the documents.
- Most likely you will be shown a municipal parking ticket. But one coupon is valid only for one parking space, for one specific car, which means that the car number must be indicated in the coupon. If the parking space is empty, and the car number is not indicated, you cannot be denied entry to the site.
- Remember that parking spaces cannot be limited by cones. The location of any cones, objects on the roadway is prohibited. This is allowed only to public utilities in case of road repair, a breakthrough of heating mains.
And most importantly, remember that the threats of such valets that your car may be scratched or mirrors bounced off, as well as their assurances that they are personally responsible for your car, are absolutely unfounded. If you hear this, say that you will call the police, pay attention to the surveillance cameras aimed at your car, or record the dialogue with the fake parking driver on camera. This usually works. But do not forget to pay for municipal parking, otherwise, there is a risk of getting a fine 20 times the cost of an hour of parking.