Come fall, the 2014 Chevrolet SS Sedan will do most of the work for you. In the meantime, check out these parking apps.
By Stephanie Georgopulos
It’s impossible to live life uninterrupted when you’re circling the block for the 17th time looking for a place to park. Chevrolet is here to help you out: The 2014 SS Sedan will practically park itself. Using Park Assist technology, the car will assess spaces to make sure you have enough room to get in and out; take over the steering wheel once you’ve found The One; and guide you into the vacant spot. Parallel, perpendicular—it makes no difference. The catch? The car won’t be available for purchase until fall.
So while we count down the days until the park-assist sedan arrives, here are the best apps to help you find a spot—and recall where it is—when you don’t have time to spare.
Parking Mate allows you to set a meter timer with a single swipe. Your phone will alert you when your time is about to run out, which is excellent, because the only person who enjoys racing against a clock is Nicolas Cage. Parking Mate also helps you abide by street-sweeping rules and other restrictions by showing you the safest places to park and notifying you when you need to move your vehicle.
The Parker app tells you not only where the closest spot is in real-time, but also how much it costs to park there—whether you’re looking for a garage, a lot or a metered parking spot on the street. Parker will ensure that you make an informed decision rather than committing to the first spot that jumps out at you.
If you’re a minimalist, go the simple route and use Google Maps to remember where you parked. The “drop pin” feature marks where it is so there’s no confusion when you’re ready to drive to your next destination.
Highly rated by iPhone users, Parkbud goes the extra mile by helping you with everything from finding a spot to monitoring your meter times. It costs two dollars, but it comes with an additional perk: It allows you to pay for parking with a couple of taps of your cell phone. No more running to the car in the middle of a lunch date to avoid parking tickets! Just use your phone to fill ’er up remotely.
The Walk Me to My Car app not only walks you back to your car, it also makes your phone vibrate when you’re getting close, so you don’t have to worry about walking up to a stranger’s car and embarrassing yourself in a crowded parking lot. The Walk Me to My Car app also includes a parking timer.
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Stephanie Georgopulos is an editor at Thought Catalog. Her work has been featured on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, The Awl, Gizmodo, The Next Web, Refinery 29 and elsewhere. Email her at Stephanie@thoughtcatalog.com or follow her on Twitter: @omgstephlol.