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Categories: Oakland Parking

A Street-Smart Guide to Oakland Parking Rules

There are plenty of places to park your car on the street in Oakland. Whether you’re looking for parking downtown, near the Paramount Theater, or close to the Kaiser Center, stay on top of street parking rules to avoid tickets and citations. If you already have a ticket and want to pay your citation, or you’re trying to find the rules for an upcoming outing, keep reading to learn all about Oakland street parking.

General Oakland Street Parking Rules:

What do the different curb colors mean?

Red Curb: No stopping, standing or parking at any time.

Yellow Curb: Yellow curbs are for loading and unloading of passengers between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m, and you must move your car within three minutes. If your vehicle has commercial license plates, you have no more than 30 minutes to load or unload materials.  On Sundays and holidays, yellow curb restrictions do not apply.

White Curb: White curbs are also for loading and unloading of passengers. Most white curb restrictions apply from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. If the white curb is in front of a hotel or a hospital, white curb restrictions are in effect at all times, but if the curb is in front of a theater or hall, the restrictions do not apply when the business is closed.

Green Curb: Green curbs mean no standing or parking for longer than 12 minutes at any time between 8 a.m and 6 p.m. Green curb restrictions do not apply on Sundays or parking holidays but are in effect on Saturdays.

Blue Curb: Blue curbs are reserved or people with disabilities whose vehicles display either a valid license plate or disability placard.

What do I do if I have an Oakland parking ticket?

If you already have an Oakland parking ticket, you can pay your ticket online with a credit card or debit card. The city’s online system accepts Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. Alternatively, pay your ticket by phone, mail your ticket to the City of Oakland, or pay in person. Additional information, including towing information and payment plans, can be found on the City of Oakland’s website.

How much do Oakland street parking tickets cost?

The most commons parking citations are expired meters, but all of them will run you a chunk of change. Here’s how much different types of parking tickets cost:

Ticket Type


Expired Meter $58
Failure to Display Parking Receipt $58
Parking in a Red Zone $83
Parking in a Bus Zone $265
Impeding a Lane of Traffic (Double Parking) $41
Failure to Cramp Wheels on Grade $45
Parking in the Wrong Direction on a One-Way $48
Parking in the Wrong Direction on a Two-Way $63
Parking in a Residential Parking Permit Zone $83

Where can I find free and cheap street parking in Oakland?

Weekend parking in metered spots is free in Oakland! The easiest way to find free parking in the city is to use this Oakland parking map. Simply type in the address of the location you wish to see, and find out how much parking costs in that area, as well as how long you can park there. For an even more streamlined experience that will even send you reminders when your meter is about to expire, download the SpotAngels app.

What about overnight parking in Oakland?

There are plenty of places to park overnight, just make sure you know when the meters start recording in the morning if you’re parked on a metered street. To find overnight parking, you can use this overnight parking map.

What are the rules for parking on residential streets?

Apply for an Oakland parking permit! If you live in an Oakland neighborhood that borders a more commercial area of the city, you may be eligible for the city’s Residential Parking Permit (RPP) Program. If you obtain a parking permit, you’re able to park on the street beyond the two-hour parking limit in designated parking areas. To see whether you’re eligible and apply for a residential permit, visit the city’s website.

Oakland Parking Meter and Garage Information:

How much does metered parking cost?

Between 8-6pm Monday thru Friday, metered parking in Oakland costs $2.00 per hour. Parking is free on certain holidays.

In Chinatown, the city of Oakland is experimenting with variable parking rates. Park Oakland changes rates throughout the day, depending on expected competition per space available. The more high traffic times of day cost more in order to encourage drivers to move their cars more quickly. Keep an eye out for programs like these, which could expand in future years. For now, this map will help you keep track of changing meter rates in Chinatown.

How long can I park in a metered street parking space?

You can park in a metered space for up to two hours, but cannot park there any longer. Even if you move your car after the two-hour limit and come back later in the day to the same spot, you’re liable for any ticket costs you incur. Best to avoid the spot altogether.

Which days are Oakland parking holidays?

  • New Year’s Day – January 1
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday – third Monday of January
  • President’s Day – third Monday of February
  • Memorial Day – last Monday of May
  • Independence Day – July 4
  • Labor Day – first Monday of September
  • Thanksgiving Day – fourth Thursday of November
  • Christmas Day – December 25

If the holidays falls on a Sunday, the following Monday is a parking holiday.

There are additional holidays when street sweeping doesn’t apply.

Where can I find parking garages?

Parking garages exist all throughout the city. Some are city-owned and some are privately managed. There are long-term parking options available as well as short-term, daytime parking options. The easiest way to find parking garages near you is to check out the parking map. Look for the blue P icon on the map and click it to reveal information about parking rates and duration.

Where can I find parking near the airport?

The Oakland Airport is in the process of upgrading its entire parking system to a more convenient, responsive system. In the meantime, if you fly often be sure to check out their frequent parking program for discounted rates. More information on airport parking can be found on their website.

Parking Near Your Destination:

1. Fox Theater Parking

There is ample metered parking around the theater, but don’t count on those spaces being open on event nights. Instead, find out which of the parking lots nearby have open spaces and check whether the theater will validate your parking if you attend a show.

If you do park in metered parking, mark your spot on the SpotAngels app to receive real-time updates when you need to move your car.

2. Lake Merritt Parking

Most street parking near Lake Merritt Plaza is 2-hour metered parking. If you’re hoping to spend more time exploring the Demonstration Gardens or Cinderella’s Party Area, choose to park in a garage nearby.

If you’re planning a trip for later in the day, find out how much parking costs at that exact time by changing your desired parking time on the map.

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