Can You Park at a Hotel Without Staying There?

Are you planning a trip and looking for a place to park your car? You may be wondering if you can park at a hotel without staying there.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Yes, you can park at a hotel without staying there, but it might come at a cost.

In this article, we’ll explore the various options for parking at hotels, the potential fees involved, and some tips for finding the best parking solution for your needs.

Types of Hotel Parking

When it comes to hotel parking, there are typically three types: self-parking, valet parking, and off-site parking. Each option has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to know what to expect before you arrive at the hotel.


Self-parking is the most common type of hotel parking. With self-parking, you park your own car in the hotel’s parking lot or garage. This option is generally the most affordable, and it gives you the freedom to come and go as you please without having to wait for a valet.

However, self-parking can be inconvenient if the hotel’s lot is far from the entrance or if it’s difficult to find a parking spot. Additionally, some hotels charge a daily fee for self-parking, which can add up quickly.

Valet Parking

Valet parking is a more convenient option for hotel guests who don’t want to worry about finding a parking spot or walking to the hotel entrance. With valet parking, you simply pull up to the hotel and hand your keys over to the valet attendant, who will park your car for you.

While valet parking is convenient, it can also be expensive. Many hotels charge a daily fee for valet parking, and you’ll also be expected to tip the valet attendant each time you retrieve your car.

Off-Site Parking

Off-site parking is an option for hotel guests who want to save some money on parking. With off-site parking, you park your car in a lot or garage that’s not owned by the hotel, but is located nearby. The hotel may offer a shuttle service to and from the off-site lot.

Off-site parking is generally the most affordable option, but it can be inconvenient if the off-site lot is far from the hotel or the shuttle service is slow. Additionally, you’ll need to factor in the cost of the shuttle service when comparing prices.

Before choosing a hotel parking option, it’s important to consider your budget, convenience, and preferences. Check the hotel’s website or call ahead to find out what parking options are available and how much they cost. You may also want to check online reviews to see what other guests have to say about the hotel’s parking situation.

Hotel Parking Fees

One common question that many people have when it comes to parking at a hotel is whether or not they can park there without actually staying at the hotel. While policies may vary from one hotel to another, in most cases, the answer is no. Most hotels have specific parking rules and regulations that apply to their guests only. These rules are usually put in place to ensure that there is sufficient parking for their guests and to prevent non-guests from taking up valuable parking spaces.

Hourly Rates

If you need to park at a hotel for only a short period of time, hourly rates may be available. These rates are typically higher than daily or overnight rates, so it’s important to check the hotel’s website or call ahead to inquire about pricing. Hourly rates can be a good option if you’re only planning to park for a few hours and don’t want to pay for a full day’s parking.

Daily Rates

Most hotels charge daily rates for parking, which are typically cheaper than hourly rates. Daily rates may be a good option if you’re planning to stay at the hotel for a full day or longer. However, you should always check the hotel’s website or call ahead to inquire about pricing and availability, as some hotels may have limited parking spots available.

Overnight Rates

If you’re staying at a hotel overnight, you’ll likely be charged an overnight parking fee. This fee is usually included in the cost of your room, but it’s always a good idea to double-check with the hotel to make sure. Overnight rates can be more expensive than daily rates, so it’s important to factor this into your budget when planning your trip.

Additional Fees

In addition to hourly, daily, and overnight rates, some hotels may charge additional fees for parking. For example, some hotels may charge a valet parking fee or an in-and-out fee if you need to leave and return to the hotel multiple times during your stay. It’s important to read the hotel’s parking policy carefully to avoid any surprises when you arrive.

Tips for Finding the Best Hotel Parking

Research the Hotel’s Parking Options

Before booking a hotel, it’s important to research their parking options. Some hotels offer free parking for guests, while others charge a daily fee. Check the hotel’s website or call their front desk to inquire about their parking policies. Some hotels may also offer valet parking or self-parking options, so it’s important to know which one works best for you.

Compare Prices

Once you have found a few hotels with suitable parking options, compare their prices. Look for any additional fees or taxes that may be added to the parking cost. You can also use online booking sites to compare prices between different hotels. Keep in mind that parking prices may fluctuate depending on the time of year or special events happening in the area.

Consider Off-Site Parking

If the hotel’s parking options are too expensive or not suitable for your needs, consider off-site parking. Many cities have off-site parking lots or garages that offer cheaper rates than hotel parking. Some off-site parking lots even offer shuttle services to and from the hotel. Just be sure to research the safety and security of the off-site parking before making a decision.

Check for Discounts or Packages

Before booking your hotel, check for any discounts or packages that may include parking. Some hotels offer discounted parking rates for guests who book their room and parking together. You can also check if the hotel has partnerships with nearby attractions or businesses that may offer parking discounts. Don’t hesitate to ask the hotel staff if they have any special offers available.

By following these tips, you can find the best hotel parking options that fit your budget and needs.

Alternatives to Hotel Parking

Hotel parking can be expensive, especially in big cities where parking space is limited. Fortunately, there are several alternatives to hotel parking that can save you money and hassle. Here are some of the best options:

Public Parking Lots

Public parking lots are an affordable and convenient option for travelers. Many cities have public parking lots near hotels that charge a fraction of what hotels charge for parking. You can typically find public parking lots by searching online or using a parking app.

When using a public parking lot, be sure to read the signs carefully to avoid getting a ticket or getting towed. Additionally, some public parking lots may not be open 24/7, so be sure to check the hours of operation before parking your car.

Street Parking

Street parking can be a great option if you’re willing to walk a bit. In many cities, you can find free street parking in residential areas near hotels. However, be sure to read the signs carefully to avoid parking in a restricted zone or during street cleaning times.

It’s also important to keep in mind that street parking can be risky in some areas. Make sure to park in a well-lit area and don’t leave any valuables in your car.

Ride-Sharing Services

Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft are becoming increasingly popular among travelers. In addition to providing a convenient and affordable way to get around, ride-sharing services can also help you avoid the hassle of searching for parking.

When using a ride-sharing service, be sure to enter the correct pick-up and drop-off locations to avoid any confusion. Additionally, keep in mind that surge pricing may apply during peak travel times.

Pros Cons
Public Parking Lots
  • Affordable
  • Convenient
  • Easy to find
  • May not be open 24/7
  • May require a bit of walking
Street Parking
  • Free
  • Accessible in some areas
  • Good for short stays
  • Risky in some areas
  • May require a bit of walking
  • May be restricted
Ride-Sharing Services
  • Convenient
  • Avoids parking hassle
  • Good for short stays
  • May not be cost-effective for longer stays
  • Surge pricing may apply
  • Not always available in some areas


In conclusion, parking at a hotel without staying there is possible, but it’s important to be aware of the potential fees involved. By researching your options, comparing prices, and considering alternative parking solutions, you can find the best parking solution for your needs and budget.

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, finding a convenient and affordable parking solution can help make your trip stress-free and enjoyable.

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