Many drivers across the UK are experiencing ever increasing prices just to park near their home, with research showing a 51% hike in the cost of local parking permits.
These rises seem to be in order to create extra funds for local councils, with a total of £44m raised last year, but this is coming at vast expense for many drivers, some of whom are facing annual outlays of up to £800 for the right to leave their car close to home.
Jon Wilshire, chief underwriting officer at Esure, said: “Some motorists are paying hundreds of pounds simply to park their car near their home. And to make things worse, even with a residential parking permit many drivers still find it difficult to find a parking space.
“Over the past two decades the number of vehicles on the road in Britain increased by 10 million but the space available for parking in residential areas has not increased.”
Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said many drivers see the charges as a “stealth tax on people who have no choice other than to pay”.
He added: “The law is crystal clear – on-street parking charges should be set to manage congestion, not to raise revenue.”
Birmingham was the area with the highest permit charges, with the highest annual charge coming to £785. London areas were lower down than many might expect too, with Manchester and Edinburgh both proving to be more expensive areas.
The LGA’s transport spokesman, Peter Box, said: “Councils are on the side of motorists but this survey highlights the difficulties they face in balancing the requirements of commuters and residents.
“Councils often introduce restrictions at residents’ request and consult widely on them, but in some places there simply is not enough road space or parking space to accommodate demand.”