San Francisco is one of California's busiest cities, and is also one of the most cultured city centers in the nation. As popular and trend-setting this cosmopolitan city is, San Francisco is a relatively small city nestled against the bay, which makes driving and parking a major problem. However, ParkMe is here to help you find that coveted San Francisco parking spot so that you can spend more time soaking up all that the city has to offer.
Searching for parking in a particular neighborhood? Click the links below to find the best places to park in San Francisco.
Lots of Spaces: There are tons of parking lots and garages scattered around San Francisco with an average of 339 spaces per lot, so if the lot you were heading to is full, drive a couple blocks away and there will most likely be another lot with open spaces.
Pier Parking: Parking along the coast of the San Francisco Bay, mainly within the Fisherman's Wharf, Embarcadero, and Financial Districts, can be pricier than in other areas of the city. The average rate for lots is around $3 for every 15 minutes or $12 for 1 hour. Street meter prices can also skyrocket to around $4-$5 per hour in some areas of the Financial District. Meters along the Embarcadero also run later than most parking meters which are free after 6pm. Meters along the Embarcadero run until 11pm every night.
Parking Meters: There are about 25,000 metered parking spaces in San Francisco. Most of these meters charge $2-$3 per hour and have a 4 hour time limit, but there are some areas where you can park for a mere $0.50 per hour or even pay $5.75 per hour! Be sure to READ THE SIGNS before leaving your car. Many streets within the city become tow-away or no parking zones during rush hour, and while most meters are free after 6pm, there are always some areas with meters that run all day and night!
Long-term vs Short-term Parking: Parking lot rates in San Francisco can get very confusing and you can very easily end up paying $3 for 15 minutes of parking when you could park all day for $10. Many lots have expensive short-term parking rates and relatively low long-term rates. The easiest way to calculate your total parking costs is to enter your entry and exit time in the ParkMe website and we will show you the exact cost of parking for that amount of time at each lot. Take the hassle out of figuring out your parking costs, let us do the math for you!
Pro Tip 1: You can park in the yellow loading zone meters on Stuart and Spear Streets after 11am. Read the signs to make sure you can park that day, but after 11am the yellow loading zones become public parking zones.
Pro Tip 2: Parking in a lot or garage is often much easier than parking on the street. Not only are street spots hard to come by, but it can also be difficult for those who are not used to parallel parking on steep inclines (since San Francisco is practically a bunch of small hills). If you do find that rare open spot on the street, makesure to curb your wheels properly to avoid getting a ticket! The San Francisco Parking Enforcement are extremely strict about curbing your wheels, even on streets with slight inclines. When in doubt, curb your wheels! It's the safest way to avoid any unwanted parking tickets.