Parking fines in Singapore may not seem like a big deal, but anyone who’s seen a parking summons under their wipers will tell you: “You’re about to have a bad day.”
Receiving a parking fine seems unfair, especially if you just had to run a quick errand. Perhaps you were just passing something to friend, and were gone for five minutes, tops. It feels “unjust” to be liable for a parking fine.
Here are five tips to help you avoid or get out of a parking fine in Singapore.
USE THE PARKING.SG APP
Paying for parking is the surest way to avoid a parking fine in Singapore, and the handy Parking.sg app makes it easy, too.
You might be in a huge, open and empty carpark, and think that there’s no way you’re going to receive a summons.
If you take the risk and are caught, the parking fine will easily end up costing more than what you’d pay for a few minutes or even an hour. So, use the Parking.sg app.
The Parking.sg app has another advantage. Anecdotally, we’ve heard of folks who form Whatsapp groups to avoid paying for parking, by warning each other that the “saman” uncle/auntie (parking warden) is making their rounds.
(Disclaimer: Torque does not advocate this method to avoid parking fees, parking fines and/or summonses.)
AVOID PARKING ILLEGALLY
Not paying for parking is one thing, but parking illegally in Singapore is a lot more serious and you could end up with a parking fine and demerit points.
You might be able to appeal against a parking fine for forgetting to activate the Parking.sg app, but in Singapore, our guess is that it’s going to be almost impossible to appeal against an illegal parking offence that carries demerit points.
AVOID URA-OPERATED CARPARKS
Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) actually discourages motorists from trying to get out of their parking fines. On their Appeals page, it explicitly states that the “majority of appeals are rejected”.
It sounds like URA is a lot stricter when it comes to parking enforcement, so if you still insist on not paying for parking while running a quick errand, the risk of you getting a parking summons and not being able to appeal it could be higher.
GIVE A GOOD REASON WHEN APPEALING
Torque spoke to lawyer Sarjeet Singh from Alan Shankar & Lim LLC. According to him, the waiving or reduction of parking fines is discretionary. It is up to the Singapore Government body that issued the summons (LTA, URA, HDB and Traffic Police).
Mr Singh also says that “good reasons are always a factor for them”. So, if you had to park illegally due to say, a medical emergency, they might waive your parking fine.
And if you’re a first-time offender, you’ll definitely be given consideration.
USE YOUR IN-CAR CAMERA
If you’ve been issued a summons for parking in a HDB loading/unloading space (see “General House Rules, #8“), but know that you immediately drove off after dropping off your items, you can use the footage from your in-car camera to bolster your appeal.
Again, the waving of fines is at their discretion.
BONUS: APPEAL DIRECTLY TO THE PARKING WARDEN
If the parking warden has just begun keying in your vehicle details, there’s still a 50-50 chance they’ll let you go if you ask them nicely to let you off the hook.
But if they’ve already entered your vehicle’s details and printed out a summons, it’s already too late. You’ll have to lodge an appeal and keep your fingers crossed.