When the Parking.sg app was released in October 2017, I breathed a sigh of relief.
No longer would I have to purchase parking coupons. No longer would I have to estimate how long I would be parking before tearing tabs. My coupon booklet now only holds fuel cards.
Suffice to say, the Parking.sg app is a godsend. Now, all I need to do is find the correct carpark code whenever I’m in a HDB or URA carpark.
Parking.sg is even more of a godsend to other motorists, who are probably saving even more money on parking charges than I am.
You see, the app also makes it easy for drivers to minimise carpark fees.
Let’s say that in your office, only managers at a certain level are given the privilege of parking within the building’s premises, and that the rest of the staff have to park in a HDB/URA carpark outside.
Let’s also assume that the carpark in question can be seen from one side of the office.
Before the app, an honest driver would either buy season parking, or display enough coupons to last the entire day.
Motorists who wanted to avoid paying for parking would only run out and place coupons if somebody warned them that the saman uncle/auntie was doing their rounds.
With the Parking.sg app, these motorists only need to open the app and choose the half-hourly parking option.
After saman auntie/uncle checks their vehicle and moves on, all the driver has to do is open the app and select “End Parking”.
I’ve never seen a parking warden actually return to a vehicle that he or she has already checked. Therefore, I assume that this tactic actually works.
And if I have thought of this, then hundreds, if not thousands of other motorists have also thought of this idea, and are currently doing it.
Imagine paying a few cents a day, instead of a few hundred dollars a month, to park your car the whole day. More moolah for you, less for the Government’s coffers.
I wonder if the LTA scholars have thought of this. I also wonder if, despite the inherent risk that drivers will use the app to game the system, the Government went ahead and launched it anyway. After all, it’s important for Singapore to be on the cutting edge of technology.
But I can’t help but think that although we have come far when it comes to hardware (implementing technological enhancements), we still have a long way to go before our “software” (honesty, civic-mindedness, etc.) catches up.
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