We’ve all done it. We pull into the parking lot at work just a minute late, and all the prime spots are taken. Or we try to run an errand on our way home, but the store is so busy the only open spots are out by the main road. We hit the asphalt running, hoping it isn’t really as far to the door as it looks.
It doesn’t have to be this way. To avoid having to feel like you’re parking in another country, make a parking plan. Get your spot by the parking bollards at the front door with these tips.
- Get there early. Even though it’s annoying to hear, probably the most efficient way to get the right parking spot is to get there before anyone else does. While this strategy may not work at a store, it does work for jobs and events where everyone is asked to come at a specific time.
- Choose a different store. If you need to run to the store, don’t choose the most popular store right at rush hour. Try to think of another location where there are fewer people, or choose a different store with similar products. The goal is to find a location with lower foot traffic.
- Get Employee of the Month. Some businesses offer a reward to the employee of the month: a parking spot by the front door. If there are parking bollards at a spot designated for the employee of the month, work hard and get the sales you need to earn it.
- Look for specialty parking signs. Some establishments have special parking for certain types of people, such as expectant mothers. If you can identify a sign like this and it fits your description, take the spot! Also remember that if you or a friend or family member has a handicap parking decal, you can park near the front of the lot.
Sometimes, of course, you get lucky. Keep your eye out for people walking to their cars or cars with their reverse lights on. You never know when someone has to leave suddenly, making way for you to pull right in to the perfect parking spot.