How to not get a parking fine this Christmas (yes, there's a way).

On the count of three, we’re going to name the single, most stressful thing about doing the Christmas shopping. Ready?

One, two, three…PARKING!

Oh…oh, sorry, did you say “trying to find that darn Hatchimal and matching wrapping paper and ribbons and CRAP I NEED TEN MORE ROLLS OF STICKY TAPE?”

Because, yes, while all of those things are stressful, the facts have been laid on the table and it turns out that trying to find a bloody park in your over-crowded local shopping mall is the part of Christmas shopping that causes the most stress.

woman parking stressed
Finding a park is officially the most stressful part of Christmas prep. Image via iStock.

A new survey, conducted by Aussie Farmers Direct, has revealed that 59.4 per cent of shoppers hate finding a park.


And you can bet your bottom (Christmas) dollar that returning to your car with arms full of pressies for your little nephew Tommy, only to find a big fat parking ticket on your windscreen, is going to send that stress to the next level.


Thankfully, there's a few tips and tricks you can use to wiggle your way out of Santa's bad (parking) books.

"Parking tickets don’t have to be the automatic pain in the hip pocket that we’ve come to expect," Adam Ly, principal at LY Lawyers in Sydney, says.

sydney family parked in for a week
Finding this on your car after a long day of Chrissy shopping = THE WORST. Image via iStock.

Mr. Ly says there are options available to those who find themselves on the receiving end of a nasty parking ticket.

"Don’t just assume that the council ranger or parking inspector has got it right. There could be very good reasons to fight the ticket," he says.

Motorists should always check the date, location and registration number on the ticket for errors, and carefully read any street signs against your fine.

Drivers can also seek an internal review of the fine, writing to the Council to explain the situation and ask to have it withdrawn or changed.

Dear Santa, Can you get me out of my fine for Christmas? Image via iStock.

Motorists can also nominate another driver to receive the fine (if you weren't the one driving, that is) and if you feel you have a compelling enough case, challenge the fine in court.

There are also mobile apps available that enable drivers to stay one step ahead of the parking inspectors.

"The ParkPatrol app is an early warning system when parking officers are nearby," says Ly.

Finding that free car spot AND escaping a fine? That's a true Christmas miracle.