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Like your SUV? You’ll pay more for parking

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(Crain News Service photo) The 2015 Chevy Tahoe could be charged extra in some parking lots.

By Jake Lingeman, Crain News Service

DETROIT (March 28, 2014) — Hey sport-utility vehicle driver: You should get ready to pay more at the parking lot, especially in big cities.

MarketWatch reported on March 26 that parking lots are going the way of airplane luggage: Bigger means more expensive.

The report found that Manhattan garages charge $10-$15 more per day for oversized vehicles. In San Francisco, upcharges were the same or higher. In Boston, certain spots can be up to $40 more per day to park your Expedition.

Hotel and airport parking lots are doing the same. The report found that oversized vehicles must pay $55 instead of $48 at a Hyatt in Washington, D.C. In San Francisco the Hyatt charges $25 more per night for big cars.

Elise Fox, PR manager for parking app SpotHero, told MarketWatch: “This is an industry where, if one company starts offering a different price, others will follow.”

Some garages even deny entry to oversized SUVs, including Colonial Parking in D.C. and some ICON garages in New York City. Other garages give discounts to smaller cars.

American SUV drivers are still ahead of European ones, at least as far as taxes go. London was looking at a system that would charge SUV drivers 25 British pounds (about 40 bucks) every time they entered the city center. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg suggested a similar charge for the Big Apple, but the bill was shot down before it reached a vote.

A few bucks per park job doesn’t seem like much, but MarketWatch makes the point that if an SUV driver was charged $15 for parking once a week, that comes out to $780 per year. It pays to shop around, not just for a parking space but for your oversized car.

This report appeared on the website of Autoweek magazine, a Detroit-based sister publication of Tire Business.

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