Where Can Motorcycles Park? – 6 Legal Motorcycle Parking Spaces

Motorcycles parked on the side of a road. Motorbike parking shortage is one of the many problems faced by motorcyclists, especially in busy and congested cities.

Nothing perplexes a motorcyclist than going on a motorcycle ride only to realize that you don’t know where to park. Usually, the fear of breaking the law is just as great as wrongful parking becoming a safety risk. But where can motorcycles park legally in the US?

Motorcycles can park in car parks, motorcycle garages, bicycle bays, curbs, pay and display spots, and on designated places on the road, such as on single yellow and red lines. 

You, however, cannot park a motorbike on pavements, striped areas, and anywhere marked ‘No Parking.’

Knowing where to park as per the law can save you from prosecution or becoming a safety risk to pedestrians and other motorists.

Let’s now look at how and where you can legally park a motorcycle!

Where Can Motorcycles Park? – Your Options That Abide by the Law

Let’s talk about the specific places for motorbike parking in the United States.

You cannot park just anywhere in the United States. 

For example, you cannot park on pavements and striped areas as it’s unsafe and illegal to do so. You also cannot park anywhere labeled ‘No Parking’ as that also contravenes the law. You, however, can park in the following motorcycle parking spaces:

1. Car Parks

A motorbike parked in a car park with a parking bay for motorcycles.

Generally, you are allowed to park anywhere where you can park cars, and there is no better reference than car parks. Usually, car parks dedicate a small section to motorcycles, often between car bays.

It’s crucial, nonetheless, to ensure you don’t obstruct any car when parking motorcycles. Also, avoid parking behind vehicles as that is dangerous. More importantly, secure your motorbike in the car park to keep it safe.   

2. Motorcycle Garages

Motorbikes parked in a motorcycle garage. Some garages provide parking space and services for motorcycles.

While motorcycle garages are for repairing, servicing, and maintaining your motorcycle, they also provide parking for motorcycles. 

Nowadays, motorcycle garages are monitored by surveillance 24/7 and accessible using special key codes, thus safe. Others even offer extra storage spaces for your motorcycle gear.

3. Bicycle Bays/Motorcycle Bays

Motorcycles parked in a bicycle parking bay. Some cities allow motorbikes to park in bicycle bays.
Motorcycles-Only Parking Bay. Source: Quora

Most cities now have bicycle bays where bicycle owners can safely park their bicycles on the streets. You may find a motorcycle bay dedicated explicitly as a parking space for motorbikes in some places. Motorcycle bays are quite common in the UK.

Often, the parking clerks allow motorcycle owners to park there too. You, however, have to confirm that it is acceptable before parking a motorcycle in the bay. Also, don’t forget to secure your motorbike as these places are not entirely safe.

4. On Curbs

While it’s illegal to park on pavements, you can park on curbs (raised sidewalks) in most places unless it’s stated ‘no parking.’ However, do not park parallel to the curb as that will make you less visible to road users. Instead, park the bike at a 45-60-degree angle to the curb.

5. Pay and Display Spots

Pay and Display spots are machine ticketing centers for regulating urban parking. Once you have a motorcycle parking permit from them, you can park there. It’s essential, however, that you confirm first as the spots are primarily for ticketing and not parking.

6. On the Road

Motorcycles parked on a road. Some states allow motorcyclists to park on the side of the road.

It’s usually a gray area when it comes to parking on the road. Some states allow you to do it while others don’t. Thus, you should confirm first.

But overall, you can only park between single red and yellow lines and not on double red and yellow stripes. Also, you cannot park in places indicating ‘no parking zone.’

Whenever you park on the road, you should secure your bike and ensure you observe all road signs.

When Can I Park a Motorcycle in an Undesignated Place?

Some instances may force you to park your motorcycle in an undesignated place. 

Note: Parking in such places should be for a short time and MUST be logically done so you don’t inconvenience other motorists or pose risks to yourself and the bike.

In an emergency situation, you can park your bike in a place marked ‘No Parking’, pavement, sidewalk, or striped area. For example, if you suddenly feel unwell and unable to control the bike when riding, you can temporarily park as you wait to recover. 

Another instance when you can park a motorbike in an illegal parking spot is when you have to obey police orders. 

For example, if a police officer stops you for an offense, you should stop close to them. However, logic applies here so you don’t stop anywhere that would put your bike, yourself, the police officer, or other motorists in grave danger.

You may also park your motorcycle in an undesignated spot if, for some reason, you have to clear the way for emergency services, such as ambulances or fire vehicles.

A stand-by fire vehicle. Motorbikes can park in an undesignated spot if they have to give way to emergency vehicles like fire engines.

Motorcycle Parking Laws

While motorbike parking laws differ between states, a few rules are the same everywhere and are thus worth knowing. These laws include:

  • Park your motorcycle in a manner in which the rear tire is at an angle to the curb and not parallel, to improve visibility
  • Don’t park on the sidewalks unless in emergency cases as it’s unsafe and annoying to pedestrians
  • Don’t park behind vehicles as it’s dangerous to do so
  • You must pay the necessary parking fee unless it’s a free motorcycle parking space
  • The motorcycle side mirrors, lights, and other accessories shouldn’t extend to the sidewalk for 10 inches or more
  • Don’t park on striped areas as they are for the physically challenged
  • Don’t park within a 5-foot radius from the driveway
  • Avoid parking in tow-away and load zones or near fire hydrants, as it’s unsafe to do so.

Motorcycle Parking Tips

These motorcycle parking tips are a must-know if you want to have an easy time parking in town and avoid hefty fines and safety risks:

  • Use a free motorcycle parking app such as CurbNinja or EatSleepRIDE to search for ‘free motorcycle parking near me.
  • Consider parking spaces that are less crowded and easy to access
  • Don’t park anywhere where you cannot park a car due to safety concerns
  • Always lock your motorcycle regardless of where you park
  • Don’t squeeze your motorcycle between cars
  • Avoid parking in striped areas as they are for people with physical challenges. That’s simple motorcycle parking etiquette.

Thanks Alex! I know where to park now. What next?

Generally, knowing where motorcycles can park legally is essential in avoiding costly prosecution and safety issues. As shared, you can legally park in car parks, motorcycle garages, curbs, and other designated spots on the streets. However, avoid sidewalks and striped areas.

The next action you can take here is to always ride safely, and I have articles to help you with that:

  1. My comprehensive list of riding safety tips.
  2. Sometimes a motorbike crash is inevitable, and here’s how to crash safely.

People Also Ask

Given the variations in parking laws between states, many questions about parking for a motorcycle will likely arise. Here are the most frequently asked questions. 

How Many Motorbikes Can Legally Park in A Single Parking Space?

Ordinarily, you can only park up to two motorcycles per single parking space in most states. It’s, however, important to confirm that from the parking clerks. Don’t assume that you could go ahead and park your motorcycle there because you have a parking ticket.

Can Motorcycles Park Anywhere?

No! Motorcycles cannot park anywhere, especially in public places. You must park them in designated locations such as car parks, motorcycle bays, motorcycle garages, and on curbs. If you park the motorbike in a ‘no parking’ area, you could be liable for a criminal charge.   

Can Motorcycles Park in Handicap Spots?

NO! Motorcycles cannot park in handicap spots as these spots are for people with physical challenges. If found, you could pay a hefty fine, not to mention that it isn’t proper motorcycle parking etiquette.

In California, for example, you could pay $42 for a first-time offense and up to $625 and $825 for the second and third offense, respectively.

Can Motorcycles Park in Striped Areas?

No! Motorcycles cannot park in striped areas as these areas are for people with a physical disability. The zone gives the physically disabled enough room to get out of their cars and get into the wheelchair. It’s inconsiderate to take up their space in the parking area.

Can Motorcycles Park Between Cars?

Yes, motorcycles can park between cars in most places. However, you shouldn’t park too close to the vehicles to obstruct them when driving out. If you block the cars, they could damage your motorcycle when exiting the parking lot.

Can Motorcycles Park On Sidewalks?

No. Motorcycles cannot park on sidewalks. That’s because motorcycles become an obstruction when on the sidewalks, thus, illegal. Note that this applies to the US. 

However, the law allows you to park on pavements legally if your motorcycle is not causing any obstruction.

Is It Okay to Park a Motorcycle On a Hill?

Yes, you can legally park on a hill. It’s, however, tricky as it’s hard to balance a motorcycle on a hill. The best way to park on a hill is to angle the bike and do it away from people and cars. Also, ensure your motorbike is stable enough.

About Alex

Hi Friends! Welcome to Motorcycle Exploits. I'm Alex! If you ever had any personal hindrances or doubts about your abilities to ride a motorcycle, then you are in the right place, Mate! My desire is to help you overcome any fears and other personal struggles you have so that you, too, can celebrate your EXPLOITS!