I live in Adelaide, and until today had thought here was only one way to really get free city parking right near my work. Ride a Motorbike or Scooter. So I do. I ride my vespa to work almost every day, and parking in Adelaide for motorbikes is growing, and in the wet months you can always grab a park right near where you need to be.
The fair weather riders however tend to fill up those parks pretty quickly when the sun comes out.
but today I discovered another, not quite so legit, way to get free city parking.
You see, in Adelaide we have ticket based parking meters. Feed the machine a few dollars and you are issued with a ticket, which, displayed in your windshield will give you an hour or two of parking privileges.
This is a photo of one pretty similar. I was too lazy to go out and take a photo myself. Anyway, these things aren’t free, and they seem to cost more all the time.
Today, some friendly good samaritan saw me feeding the meter (I drove my diesel guzzling 4WD today) and he actually stopped his car, and came up to me with a most interesting tale. Feed the meter, and DON’T TAKE THE TICKET. That’s right, pay the full fee, and leave the ticket sitting in the dispenser for about 2 or 3 mins. The machine then thinks it’s had a problem, and promptly cancels the transaction, refunding your money. The ticket is still there to be taken, and it’s all printed and legit.
Well I was dubious, but I’d just lit a cancer stick, so I loitered at the meter for a few minutes with the ticket sitting waiting in the slot for me, the machine trying to guilt me into taking the ticket, brightly declaring “Take Ticket” on it’s little green screen. Passers by looked at me oddly, and at some point i wondered if it wasn’t all some kind of weird practical joke.
But it wasn’t. The ticket machine declared itself to be faulty, and my handful of shrapnel was returned. So if you have a minute or three to kill next time your parking in the city. Try this trick and see if you can’t take the council for a few dollars.
Otherwise, grab yourself some two-wheeled transport and do your wallet and the environment some good.