The Boston parking scene is disastrous. There’s no sugarcoating it. From 2020 to 2021, over 900,000 parking tickets were issued in Boston, earning the city over $50 million that year in revenue from parking violations.
According to Spot Angels, a parking app that helps drivers source parking in their city, the most common violation was “meter unpaid.” There are a few reasons one might not pay a meter in Boston unintentionally:
- The signs make no sense
- You pay for the wrong zone due to conflicting signage
- The meter expires because parking time is limited
These are all frequent frustrations of parking in Boston. When creating this list of parking spot recommendations, we assessed parking spots that:
- Almost always have spaces available
- State rules with clear signage
- Extendable (can renew the parking space and don’t need to move to a new zone)
Our Boston street parking recommendations
No more gatekeeping. We’re sharing a few of our team’s tried and trusted spots to park in Boston. Still, it is recommended to always do your research and take note of signs in the area.
Arlington Street in Back Bay
Back Bay accumulated the most parking tickets of any Boston neighborhood as demonstrated by the chart above. Between commuters, trucks, and visitors it can be one of the most frustrating places to try and park.
Avoid popular streets like Newbury, especially on the weekends as restaurant dining eats up spots and foot traffic makes everything more difficult. Head over to Arlington Street and shoot your shot.
Usually you’ll find a spot, but in the rare case you don’t, try Boylston Street from its intersection with Mass Ave. Drive the whole stretch of Boylston towards the Boston Public Garden and you’re also likely to find a spot!
1020 Beacon St. Brookline
Steps from Fenway, this long stretch of parking spaces travels all the way down through Brookline to Cleveland Circle. It follows the Green Line C train. Enter the zone and park for up to 4 hours. You can add time later and don’t need to move your vehicle!
Channelside Lot Southie
Seaport might actually be one of the worst places for parking, unless you don’t mind paying $40+ for a garage. Channelside lot in Southie is just a few blocks away and 24hr parking is only $5!
11 Charles Street in front of DeLuca’s Market
Forget about the waterside end of Charles Street! There is almost never parking there. However, move a little farther down in front of DeLuca’s and there’s usually an abundance of 2-hour parking on either side of the street.
Mass Ave. in Cambridge near Porter Square
Parking in Cambridge is much simpler than Boston. Even in the highest foot traffic areas like Harvard Square, you can generally find parking if you explore the side streets. The long stretch of Mass Ave, near Honeycomb Creamery, is a great choice when looking for an abundance of parking.
Other trusted parking spots from Bostonians
The parking map below showcases the spots in Boston with the most tickets. The yellow-colored areas signify the least amount of parking violations while darker oranges and reds signify the most.
After sharing some of our secret parking spaces, we also polled our Boston Uncovered audience on their trusted parking spots. As expected, many kept their secret spots to themselves. However, some were willing to share and here is what they said:
- Post Office Square
- Parking near the Boston Tea Party Museum
Using a parking app
Apps can also be helpful, especially for long term parking or monthly parking passes. Paying upfront at garages generally constitutes inflated prices and you also might not guarantee yourself a spot, especially in high travel seasons. We recommend the following apps below for long-term parking in Boston:
- Spot Hero