Monday, June 06, 2005

Parking in Switzerland

For those living in the country, parking might be straight forward. But for someone who hasn't really had the chance to get to know Switzerland's parking options, here are a few quick tips.

On street parking and car parks are color coded.

White lines and White Zones are most common. These areas usually take only coins and cost about .50CHF per hour in small towns and up to 4CHF per hour in cities. Most are time limited spaces too. There are usually a machine which has you press a corresponding button for your parking space number. If there isn't a number, then you will have to put the ticket on your dash.

Where there isn't a machine, these white spaces are free, unless saved for customers - "nur fur kunden".

Blue Zone spaces have a special parking disc (available for free at tourist offices, car rental agencies, police stations and banks). Spin the wheel to show your time of arrival. This gives you 90 minutes of free parking during most business hours. Exception for lunch arrive between 11:30am and 1:30pm, your safe until 2:30pm If you arrive after 6pm, you are safe until 9am the next day.

Red Zones are free spaces for up to 15 hours, as long as you display the disc.

Yellow spaces are private park for staff or guests of hotels. The only way to know is to ask.

But don't park illegally because parking is fairly well monitored and you will slap yourself with a good CHF - 50 to 100 fine...

Here's to getting around Switzerland a bit better...

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