A man paying his parking fee in Abu Dhabi Image Credit: Ahmed Kutty, Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Motorists in Abu Dhabi will have to pay for public parking from July 1 onwards, the Integrated Transport Centre (ITC) announced on Sunday.

In a statement issued on June 21, the transport sector regulator said the parking fees will be implemented from 8am onwards on Wednesday, July 1.

Parking fees in the emirate have been suspended for three months as a means of financial support for residents during the coronavirus outbreak.

The ITC has also encouraged motorists to pay fees using Mawaqif mobile services, which are available through the Darb application and via SMS on 3009.

Paying the fees

As in the past, the format to be followed when sending an SMS includes the city code and plate category of the vehicle, followed by a space, then vehicle plate number, followed by a space, then a choice of standard or premium parking, then a space, and then the duration of parking. SMS is charged according to the tariff of the mobile service providers.

Motorists can also pay using cash or rechargeable cards, and the ITC has said that all payment machines will be sterilised every day to ensure motorists’ safety.

Timings and rates

There are two kinds of public parking bays, and both are paid from 8AM on Saturdays to 11:59PM on Thursdays: Premium parking in the blue-and-white bays, which are charged at Dh3 per hour with a maximum stay of four hours, and Standard parking in the blue-and-black bays, which are charged at Dh2 per hour for a daily maximum of Dh15.

Public parking is free on Fridays and official holidays, and for individuals with special needs. In addition, parking spaces near mosques are exempted from fees for 45 minutes after the call to prayer.

Residential parking permits

Another regulation that will continue to apply, as it has in even when parking fees were suspended, is the implementation of residential parking slots. This means that only motorists with residential permits for specified neighbourhoods can apply for annual permits, and thus avoid paying additional parking fees for that neighbourhood alone. These permits are available from www.itc.gov.ae, and at the ITC Customer Happiness Centres.

As always, motorists must also avoid double parking or blocking traffic flow when they park, and abide by all other Mawaqif regulations, the ITC stressed.