Ride to Work Week is now well underway and we’re already seeing a fantastic response from people ditching four-wheels and public transport and embracing the marvellous motorcycle.
In our last article, we gave you tips on how to commute like a true pro. Next up, we’ll be looking at security and safety issues related to commuting in the capital, with this article being all about parking.
If you drive to work you’ll know that parking can be a nightmare, particularly if you work in the capital. In fact, parking is one of the main reasons why commuters choose to ride a motorcycle. Riding a bike means you’re able to fit into those smaller spots and what’s more, London provides plenty of free parking spaces for you to utilise.
Where you can and cannot park
As tempting as it is, you can’t just squeeze your bike into any old gap just because it fits. By law, you are allowed to park your bike:
- On a private property (if you have permission)
- In a car park in a motorcycle-specific space/area
- In a bike park
- On a public road (following the same restrictions as parking a car)
However, you can’t park your bike:
- In bus or bicycle lanes
- On the pavement
- In places where it will cause an obstruction
- On private property without permission
- On parking restrictions that already apply to cars (such as double yellows)
Check out your region’s regulations
Parking regulations for motorbikes alter with each region of London so it’s worth familiarising yourself with your specific area. For example, some areas allow bikes to park in residential spaces, while some allow bikes to share a space so long as it is paid for, including some Pay & Display areas.
Don’t assume that these rules automatically apply for the area you work in and always double check first. If you’re unsure, don’t risk it or you might end up with a ticket and a hefty fine. If you are allowed to park in these spaces (and if you’re sharing a spot with another motorcyclist) make sure your bike is within the parking lines as you can get a ticket even if you’re just an inch over. Never park in disabled parking spaces.
Using bike parks
First and foremost, double check with your company if they have allocated parking slots for motorbikes. If not, then another option is using bike parks. Unfortunately, London’s bike parks are getting increasingly crowded (as more people are coming to their senses, of course!), so it’s always a good idea to get there nice and early so you can bag a spot.
It’s not uncommon for your bike to be knocked or scratched in bike parks, so be extra-savvy when you’re parking it.