How to Park Your Car to Avoid Towing

Although most people hiring us actually want a car moved, I thought I'd throw in some expert knowledge on how to park your car to avoid towing or what you can call "involuntary vehicle relocation".

Parking your car in crowded areas is unavoidable at times and can also feel like playing a high-stakes game of Musical Chairs, but with cars, tow trucks, with no where near enough chairs. If you've ever experienced the sinking feeling of returning to a spot where your car was once happily parked, only to then find that it has mysteriously vanished, you're not alone. Having your car towed is a terrible feeling. Let's work on avoiding this terrible ordeal altogether and even have some fun pointers on how to stop tow trucks in their tracks!


This is first because it's just the easiest thing to do. Just ask someone. "Hey, can I park here?" Simple. Easy! You might get some people that say they don't know as they don't want to be responsible for whatever the outcome is, but there may be some road warrior around that knows the ins and outs of your parking location.

Always Read and Understand Parking Signs

Those tricky parking signs can take a moment to digest but they can help you park in a way you will avoid a pesky tow. Read these signs incorrectly and be ready for a trip to the tow lot. The only thing worse than a bad parking spot is a good one that turns out to be illegal two hours later.

Signs can inform you about parking time limits, permit requirements, street cleaning schedules, and more. Problem is they try to fit all those fun facts on an 18x12 peace of metal high on a stick you can read from a distance.

An Extra Moment Can Avoid a Tow

Carefully read the signage you find. Things like "No Parking," "No Stopping," or "Fire Lane" are pretty easy to avoid. Park there and gone! But it's understandable to find some others a bit more complicated to decipher. Like strange and cryptic cut cutoff times like "No Parking 10am to 3pm Thursday to Tuesday". - Huh?

Your job is to decode these hieroglyphics before you leave your car in that perfect parking space nobody but you was smart enough to park in. Take some time to read carefully and make sure that you understand what the time limits are.

Don't Ignore Temporary Signs

Check for Temporary No Parking Signs: Sometimes, temporary no parking signs are placed due to construction, special events, or emergencies. Look around for any temporary signage, especially if you see construction or roadwork.

Avoid Private Property

Parking on private property without permission from the owner is an easy way to get your car taken away. If your car is encroaching on someone's property, a friendly knock on the door could easily give you primo parking access without the hassle.

Watch Out For Permitted Parking

Always look for signs that say whether you need to be a customer, a resident, or possibly a magician to park there. If it’s unclear, assume you’re not welcome to park there. Avoid them. Some permitted parking allows for non-resident or permit holders to be parked at a certain time. Check the signs or call the local parking authority if you are confused.

If You Have a Parking Permit

Even though you have a permit, it's important to understand that you are "permitted" to do. So don't assume anything without reading

Embrace Technology

In the age of smartphones, there's no excuse for parking like it's 1999. There are apps that not only help you find a parking spot but tell you the local parking laws. Some will even feed the meter for you from afar.

Those cryptic signs may have a website or QR Code. If there's an app, it's the best way to be sure you are where you are supposed to be.

If You Do Get Towed

If your car gets towed, it’s not the end of the world—just the end of your good mood and possibly what's left of your paycheck. Still, it's important that you know your rights. Many places require signs about towing policies to be as visible. If you are not sure, take pictures of the parking area. But a good rule to go by is if you are not sure, don't park there.

Do Not Fight with The Tow Truck Driver

There are times you run into the truck driver in the act. You can count on it going as well for you as it would on an episode of Lizard Lick Towing . Local laws absolutely allow them to tow cars. Your best bet is to ask if there's a "drop fee". It saves the tow truck all the hassle but still makes them some money for their time.

Parking to Prevent Tow Truck Drivers from Towing You

So you want to park where you know you are very likely a candidate to be towed yet you feel like being a vehicle parking rights vigilante.

This portion is for entertainment only. Really, just park somewhere else. If a tow truck is determined to get your car, they will! But if you enjoy playing games with the authorities, here you go.

Remove 2 or More Tires

Sure, you might not know where to put them. But that will stop most hook trucks even if they carry skates.

Parking Boot Trick

Have a spare parking boot? Ebay is a wonderful place. Make tow trucks think you are booted or even better, prevent them from hooking you by placing a boot or wheel lock.

Park Your Car So You Need a Can Opener to Get in and Out

Park up against the curb, car in front and in back. Tow trucks need a little room to sway the car around and will have trouble pulling it out. They may go for weaker prey.

Envelope Trick

Hey, who says you don't need visual reminders to go to the post office? Get a ticket colored and shaped envelope and put in on the windshield. Tow trucks might think they gave you a ticket without ordering a tow.

Conclusion: Park Happy

Remember, parking without getting towed is like winning a game where the rules constantly change. Walking less isn't worth the tow. Stay informed, stay alert, and maybe invest in a scooter or a hoverboard. Or better yet, befriend someone with a driveway.

Carl has a decade of experience in the car shipping industry. He has worked in nearly every aspect of the transport business since 2014, taking charge of various roles in the company such as dispatching, sales, and customer service.

During those years, Carl amassed an invaluable amount of experience which has contributed to his writing of every article and and guide on NX since taking over content in 2015.