Barcelona rolls out parking apps

Barcelona has launched a new parking app apparkB to make parking easier and more user friendly in the city's blue and green areas.

The app means that users can pay online and pay only for the exact time they have parked, rather than for block units of time.

To activate the sytem users register and set up their profile by providing their name, credit card details and vehicle registration number or numbers (which is useful for businesses and companies with a fleet of cars).

Once the car is parked it is enough to press the start button for the app to begin registering the time spent in the parking space. Press stop on return to the vehicle and the app will calculate the exact payment.

The app also provides an alarm 15 minutes before the maximum time has been reached, as well as all receipts of payment and the possibiity to pay fines online.

Barcelona hopes that about 10 to 15 per cent of users will choose the app to pay for parking in the first year.

The city also has plans to extend the apps' use to the resdients' parking zones as well as the municipal car parks and the biking service.

Parked Inside is another useful app for drivers in Barcelona. Available for iPhone and Android systems it allows drivers to find empty parking spaces in the city and to pay for them at a discount. Only about 50 per cent of the city's 390,000 parking spaces are in use at any one time so the Parked Inside app offers the free spaces at a discount rate. According to the Parked Inside website one hour parking with Parked Inside costs €1.50 compared with the normal price of €3.1.