27 11 / 2013
Downtown Dollar or Less Days Return to Baltimore December 7 & 8
Parking Panda is proud to announce that we have teamed up with the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore to provide guaranteed parking passes for Downtown Dollar or Less Days when they return the weekend of December 7th and 8th.
The Downtown Partnership of Baltimore’s Dollar or Less Days are a perfect opportunity to get out around downtown and check out some of Baltimore’s oldest attractions and see them decked out for the holidays.
To view real-time parking availability and purchase parking, simply visit one of the following links for Dollar or Less Days parking passes. Upon purchasing, your electronic parking pass can either be printed at home or presented from any smartphone at your selected parking location. Parking spaces will be set aside at each location for each pre-reserved customer on event days, so parking passes are 100% guaranteed reserved on the day of your event, even if the lot otherwise fills up!
You can also earn $5 in credits for sharing Parking Panda with your friends. Every time one of your friends makes their first reservation with your discount code, you will get another $5 in credits.
22 11 / 2013
Parking Panda Teams Up With Flightcar to Offer FREE Airport Parking
We’re always looking for new ways to make parking easier for our customers, so we’ve teamed up with our friends at Flightcar to offer FREE airport parking in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Boston. Flightcar allows you to park at airports for FREE, make money renting your car out while you’re gone, and tops it off with a free car wash so you come home to a shiny car and some extra cash in your wallet.
If you’re not familiar with Flightcar, check out this excerpt from the “How It Works” page on their website.
“FlightCar lets people parking at the airport rent their vehicles out to other travelers. Every rental is insured up to $1 million, and every renter is pre-screened. Depending on the type and model year of the vehicle, you can also make up to $20/day in cash! We’ll pick you up and drop you off curbside and give you a free car wash. If you rent with us, we’ll throw in a free GPS and free insurance. To get free parking or to rent for less, choose one of the options below.”
So if you’re flying out of LAX, SFO, or BOS anytime soon, be sure to check it out and actually make money while you’re gone, instead of worrying about paying the high on-site airport rates when you return.
And don’t forget - you can still share Parking Panda with your friends and get $5 in credits every time a new friend makes a reservation - and they get $5 off their first reservation too!
20 11 / 2013
Parking Panda Teams Up with Google Wallet
You’ve never needed to have your wallet with you to make a parking reservation on Parking Panda. However, thanks to our integration with Google Wallet, now parking is one less click away. By signing in with Google, you can now use Google Wallet to speed through your guaranteed parking purchase, effectively removing one more step in the process of parking your car.
We’re always adding features and looking for ways to make finding and reserving parking as efficient as possible, and we are proud to join the list of Google Wallet merchants.
But that’s not all…the first time you use Google Wallet we’ll give you $5 off your reservation! Simply select “Buy with Google” at checkout, and we’ll take $5 off your parking price automatically!
Click here to check it out!
19 11 / 2013
Don’t Break the Bank - A Guide To Free Winter Events In Baltimore
Although the summer and fall events are winding down, Baltimore still offers an exciting array of activities and events throughout the city that won’t break the bank! For free events this winter, look through this guide and take advantage of all the offers.
Museums and Art
Maryland Historical Society Museum is home to the original manuscript of the “Star Spangled Banner”. Admission is free on the first Thursday of every month! The Museum collection includes one of only three surviving Revolutionary War officer’s uniforms in the United States as well as the most significant collection of Maryland cultural artifacts.
The Baltimore Museum of Art offers free general admission Wednesday through Sunday. The BMA boasts the largest collection of Henri Matisse’s work in the world. Currently on display is a touching collection of portraits of his daughter, Marguerite. And don’t forget to check out pieces by Morris Louis, An My Le, and Gerard Byrne.The BMA offers Free Family Sundays every weekend , an afternoon program filled with hands-on, interactive activities for the whole family.
The Maryland Institute College of Art has put forth a free exhibit, titled “The Painted Screens of Baltimore and Beyond”, displaying the vivid screen paintings on woven wire window and door screens that are considered unique contemporary folk art that can only be found in abundance in Baltimore. The exhibit opens to public on December 13th and runs until March 16, 2014 at the Meyerhoff Gallery at The Fox Building at MICA.
Located in Mount Vernon, a permanent collection at The Walters Art Museum is also completely free to the public. Currently, its internationally-renowned collection encompasses world art from pre-dynastic Egypt to 20th-century Europe. You can take one of their free guided tours at numerous times throughout the day or an audio tour at your leisure. Current special exhibitions include rare, incredibly detailed book bindings from the Gilded Age and painter Jacob Lawrence’s colorful narrative artwork, the Genesis series. Also, you don’t want to miss out on an intimate look at the conservators at work, intricately restoring art collections using their training in fine arts, art history, and chemistry. The Conservation Window is open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 12:30 to 4 pm. The Walters Art Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday.
Ever wanted to get a closer look at the stars? At the Maryland Science Center, Stargazing Fridays and Sungazing Saturdays are open to the public for free, weather permitting. Using the Science Center’s Alvan Clark & Sons 8” refracting telescope on the rooftop observatory, you can see the moon, stars, and safely explore the surface of the Sun.
Memorials and Parks
At the Baltimore Inner Harbor, there is plenty to do without breaking the bank. From the street performers drawing in large crowds at the center of Inner Harbor to the vessels in the water, there is always something to observe and enjoy. Christmas time brings in the holiday lights and celebration events throughout the neighborhood. Starting November 23rd, you can check out the Santa’s Place Light Shows at the Harborplace Amphitheater and look for Santa, who will be available for pictures.
Right across the water from the Inner Harbor is the historic Federal Hill Park. With a short climb, you can grab an incredible view of the Inner Harbor and Baltimore landscape. With close proximity to the Inner Harbor’s eateries and entertainment venues, Federal Hill Park offers a place to relax and take in the panoramic view of Baltimore. You can also learn about the Federal Hill’s role in history with its monuments and canons commemorating its use as a military base during the Civil War and more.
Edgar Allen Poe’s Gravesite and Memorial provides a serene scene in the middle of Baltimore. Located in the Westminster Hall Cemetery, Poe’s grave at the back of the cemetery has a monument in honor of the author and poet. The gravesite is especially interesting to visit near his birthday (January 19th) as admirers leave tokens in memory of Edgar Allen Poe. Keep a lookout for a bottle of cognac and three roses on the grave on the eve of his birthday, a tradition dating back to 1949 by a mysterious visitor.
Washington Monument on Charles and Monument is the first architectural monument planned to honor our nation’s first president, George Washington. On the ground, there is a museum with information about Washington. You can climb the 228 steps to the top of the monument for only a dollar and gain a beautiful view of the city. Tours are currently closed for a $5 million dollar renovation and will be reopened for its bicentennial on the Fourth of July, 2015.
The city of Baltimore will be ushering in the holiday season with special events throughout the month of December. At Harbor East on Thursday, December 5th, a month-long holiday arts exhibit will be revealed in storefronts, decorated by the finest artists around the region. There will be plenty to do for the whole family, as carolers, food, and even acrobats will fill the streets to ring in the start of Harbor East’s Window Wonderland.
At the Inner Harbor, Baltimore Parade of Lighted Boats will showcase the boats and vessels decked out in Christmas lights. The parade begins at the conclusion of “Lighting of the Fells Point Olde Tyme Christmas Lighting Ceremony” at approximately 6:00-6:30 pm on December 7th, 2013. Broadway Pier in Fells Point or the Inner Harbor Promenade offer some of the best views of the parade. Dress appropriately for the weather as the whole parade ceremony lasts 1.5 to 2 hours and you won’t want to miss any of the boats!
For another free Christmas lights display, make sure to check out the Hampden neighborhood during the month of December for the beloved annual tradition, Miracle on 34th Street. The residents on this block go all out to decorate their rowhouses with spectacular lights, inflatable snowglobes, musical trains, and more. Most nights, the lights are lit from dusk to 11 p.m. It’s best to park and walk to get a close look at elaborate decorations and themes of each house. Take in the Christmas lights and the holiday spirit around you as the residents of 34th street put on the show for the whole city.
For the official city parade, check out the Baltimore Mayor’s Christmas Parade. Last year, over 25,000 people came out to see the floats, local TV and Radio personalities, over 100 Harley Davidson motorcycles, bands, and of course, Santa. This year’s 2.5 mile-long parade will be held on December 8th, 2013 at 1 PM in the Medfield-Hampden area.
Travel & Parking Panda
Parking within Baltimore is no longer a hassle with Parking Panda. You can plan your trip, down to when and where you want to park! No more driving around blocks to find the closest parking near restaurants or museums - now you can get real time information on parking availability and cost, reserve the spot you want, and rest assured that the spot is guaranteed when you get to the location. Traveling in Baltimore is made easy with the free Charm City Circulator, which runs every 10 minutes from early morning to late night, every day. The shuttle runs four different routes, making it easy to travel between attractions, events, and neighborhoods.
For more information on events around Baltimore, pick up a copy of the Official Guide and the Visit Baltimore Restaurant Guide at the Baltimore Visitor Center.
07 11 / 2013
Avoiding Parking Tickets in D.C.
General state of parking
Parking issues are commonplace in Washington, D.C. With about 400,000 drivers commuting into the capital daily and parking spaces exceedingly difficult to find, it is no surprise that drivers paid almost $100 million in parking tickets alone last year. Officials are actively making the city more pedestrian and bicycle-friendly, and on-street parking accessibility is taking a direct hit. On-street parking requires drivers to abide by confusing rules compounded by multiple signs on a single block. Just last year, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic, the District Department of Transportation issued 1.8 million parking tickets, totaling $92.5 million. For the almost 75% of the 150 million annual visitors who drive into the capital, unfamiliar parking restrictions and confusing signs lead to parking violations that can run up to $500. For daily drivers and visitors alike, taking time to figure out the best way into the city can save money, gas, and time.
Street Parking vs. Garage Parking
There are around 17,000 on-street metered parking spots in D.C. In the busiest districts (premium demand zones listed here), parking is $2.00 an hour and in normal zones, $.70 an hour. The District Department Of Transportation launched multiple parking management programs to mitigate congestion problems (including a pay-by-phone parking meter option, residential permits, and visitor permits). The DDOT also accepts out-of-state disability permits and tags and has special ADA accessible meters (designated by a blue dome) and is currently working toward having disability parking available every two blocks.
There are a number of parking garages and lots in Washington, D.C. Keep in mind that parking garages are privately owned and not a part of the DDOT. These garages, especially near high-traffic locations, tend to fill up fast. Many parking garage companies around the city have partnerships with Parking Panda for easy, guaranteed parking reservations available online or through the iOS or Android app.
What you can do to avoid tickets
The best way to travel around DC may be to park in a secure parking garage and then travel within the city using the capital’s easily-navigated transportation systems such as the Metro and DC Circulator. If you are lucky enough to park in one of the coveted on-street parking spaces, there are some tips to keep in mind. Don’t forget, if you ever have doubts or questions about a location, contact DDOT at (202) 671-2700.
Carefully check the signs:
Rush hour restrictions are strictly enforced between the hours of 7 and 9:30 a.m., and from 4 to 6:30 p.m. All meters are enforced Monday-Saturday and most of the free on-street parking is restricted to two hours. If the coin-meter is broken, you may call the DDT number at 202-541-6030 and they will give you a code that you can display on your car. However, the DDOT has announced that there is no guarantee that a ticketing officer will exempt the motorist from a ticket.
District of Columbia does not require meter fees on official holidays. The list of official holidays can be found here. Perhaps surprisingly, parking ticket peaks come at the beginning, not the end of the month. Tourists were hit the hardest during the National Cherry Blossom Festival, with almost 68,000 tickets. According to the Washingtonian, most tickets were cited near Georgetown University campus, Lincoln Park, and the Congressional Cemetery.
How to pay for tickets
If you feel that the ticket was cited unlawfully, you can contest the parking ticket. Data from 2010 showed that 41% of the motorists beat their contested tickets. One of the best ways to win such a case is to gather concrete evidence by taking photos of where/how you were parked and conflicting or missing signs, if available. Also, look for mistakes on the actual citation - any incorrect information may be grounds for dismissal.
If you are ready to pay for a ticket, there are four options laid out by the DDOT: online, by mail, in person, or by phone at 866-893-5023. Don’t forget that tickets must be paid within 30 calendar days of the citation to avoid a penalty.
How Parking Panda can help
With most tickets around $50 and up to $500, it’s worth looking into safe, affordable options for parking your car, whether it is for regular parking or a special visit to D.C. attractions. Parking Panda offers variety of options of parking garage options around the District. Options include short-term parking, special event parking, and monthly parking passes with convenient locations throughout D.C.
Popular locations within D.C. include:
For all the ways to travel in D.C. after you park your car, check out the DDOT’s official transportation information website.
01 11 / 2013
Mercedes-Benz Superdome - Parking in the Big Easy
The atmosphere of the Who Dat Nation in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome is undeniably electric. However, with sold out games expecting around 72,000 fans, parking access close to the stadium can be a hassle. Finding a parking spot on game day can be nearly impossible as lots fill up fast and circling around in heavy traffic while looking for affordable parking options can certainly put a damper on anyone’s day.
Parking around the stadium
The Mercedes-Benz Superdome has 7 parking garages and 2 surface lots open for public parking for approximately 7,000 vehicles. The parking garages and surface lots are adjacent to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the New Orleans Arena and Champions Square - Keep in mind that the garages take cash only.
Special accommodation (Superdome Directions) is available in every garage as well as in Auxiliary Lot 3, east to the stadium. The designated drop off is at Gate A, on the north side, available to use for anyone with a disabled parking sign or license plate.
For those of you looking to tailgate, there are areas near S. Rampart and Podryas for tents and RVs. Check ahead of time for rules and regulations as well as for special events and tailgate parties. (Tailgating Site)
As always, expect traffic delays if you’re traveling within three hours of kickoff. There will be heavy congestion on Hwy 90 near the Superdome exit and also the I-10 near the Poydras Street exit. An alternate route that may save some time is to take Causeway to Airline which will turn into Tulane. This will lead you towards the Superdome with possibly less congestion
If you don’t mind the walk, there are parking garages throughout the French Quarter District within one mile of the stadium. These options will often be cheaper and you will still be in the thick of the celebration as the busy exciting neighborhood will be filled with New Orleans natives, out cheering on the Saints.
Ease your parking worries by reserving your guaranteed spot just steps away from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. There are all-day parking passes through Parking Panda on game days starting at $36.00. StubHub and other sites can run you around $80.00!
With a guaranteed day parking reservation, you can head to the games early and check out the Who Dat Nation’s game day staples -you especially don’t want to miss out on the live music, authentic food, and fellow fans on champions circle celebration prior to kick-off.
07 10 / 2013
The Wizards Quest for the Playoffs Begins Tomorrow!
Tomorrow’s pre-season tip-off at the Verizon Center against the Brooklyn Nets marks the beginning of a highly anticipated season for the Washington Wizards. The addition of rookies Otto Porter Jr. and Glen Rice Jr. to the Wizards already young and talented roster has fans excited for the season, and shooting for the playoffs.
As the official parking partner of the Verizon Center and the Washington Wizards, we want to make parking as easy as possible for Wizards fans this season. Whether you are a casual fan just catching a couple of games, or a die hard season ticket holder, we have the perfect parking option for you!
You can get guaranteed parking passes on a game by game basis by visiting our Washington Wizards parking page. Or take care of the whole season at once by selecting one of our full season game packages, which includes a parking pass for every home game of the season. By pre-paying for your passes online you eliminate the need to fumble around for your parking ticket and wallet when it is time to leave. Just present the attendant with your pre-paid pass and you will be on your way!
26 9 / 2013
Want FREE Parking? Here’s How to Make it Happen!
We’re not talking Monopoly money either! We’ve added a credit system to help you and your friends and family earn FREE parking! It’s as simple as inviting them through email or sharing with them on Facebook or Twitter. Just set up your personalized promo code and email or share it!
Any time one of your friends signs up for Parking Panda with your referral code, they earn $5 in credits. And that’s just for signing up! Once they make their first reservation, you also get $5 in credits, so you reap the rewards!
We want YOU to help US make parking easier for everyone! So invite your friends and start earning those FREE CREDITS today!
27 8 / 2013
Baltimore Race Week Is Back! The Celebration of Acceleration Returns to Charm City this Weekend!
The third annual Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT will take place downtown around the Inner Harbor this weekend. The race is one of only two events in the United States that features the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) and the IZOD IndyCar Series. New to the event this year is the largest single-make series in North America: the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama, and Parking Panda is giving away free tickets and parking for all 3 days! But if you’ve been downtown for the event before, you know there is much more to do outside of the racing action
While you are downtown, be sure to check out the full range of live music, food, beverages, and other activities Baltimore Race Week has to offer. Don’t miss the all-you-can eat Maryland Crab feast and Budweiser Party Zone. If you’re bringing your kids, be sure to head over to the Esskay Family Fun Zone located in the Baltimore Convention Center to cool off in an indoor, climate controlled environment while checking out the interactive games for parents and children of all ages! There will also be plenty of diverse live music throughout the weekend, headlined by Live on the Main Stage Saturday night at 6 pm.
So what does this mean for Charm City this weekend besides a whole lot of fun? Unfortunately, traffic and congestion. The influx of visitors to Baltimore this weekend coupled with the road closures and traffic changes around the course are going to affect travel plans for everyone downtown. That’s why we teamed up with MissionTix to provide reserved parking passes for attendees so that they know their space will be available, and how to get there on race weekend. Click here to see a detailed map of road closures and available parking.
06 8 / 2013
How Big of a Problem is Parking?
Here at Parking Panda, we talk a lot about the burden of parking and the detriment it can be on an individual’s schedule. This should come as no surprise considering our company’s primary goal is to make parking easier. However, that often leads to the question; Is finding parking that large of an issue?
It could be argued that the answer to that question relies on factors unique to each situation, that are too numerous for us to even begin to analyze. So, in order to look at it in any relevant context we have to look at the average and thankfully a study done by IBM has done that already.
According to the study, individuals worldwide spend, on average, 20 minutes looking for a parking space. We can only speak for ourselves, but we feel it is a pretty safe assumption that no one has an extra twenty minutes to spare looking for parking.
In addition, the U.S. census estimates that there are 103 million commercial parking spaces in the United States. When coupled with the fact that an estimated 200 million Americans have a drivers license, it means that there are barely enough parking spaces available for half of all U.S. drivers.
At this point, parking becomes as simple as supply and demand. There simply are not enough spaces for everyone that needs to park their vehicle. This issue is central to why our company exists. We believe that our method of reserving a guaranteed space in advance is a superior method of helping individuals find that one in 103 million parking spaces.
Don’t try to type and eat bamboo, just trust me on this one.