Best Parking In Old Town Alexandria | The Goodhart Group

Parking in Old Town Alexandria

June 3, 2021 | Inside Alexandria | By: The Goodhart Group

Parking in Old Town Alexandria

Old Town gets a bad rap for its parking! We hear many people complain that parking in Old Town Alexandria is a pain. And, well, sometimes it can be. But the majority of the time, it’s really not that bad. For those new to the area, here is the down low on parking in Old Town.


Parking designated areas (zoned or permit parking areas) were created in Old Town in 1979 after the demand for parking greatly increased, especially around areas with lots of shopping or access to public transportation. Permitted areas are noted by street signs and are often accompanied by time-limited parking for non-permit holders. Only full-time residents are able to obtain parking permits for these areas (not business owners or employees in that area). You can read more about how to obtain a resident tag here. For a map of residential Parking in Old Town, Alexandria – check it out here

In order to improve parking for residents, many blocks have successfully lobbied to implement a Residential Pay by Phone Pilot Program. This is would help by turning blocks that were previously 2-hour parking for non-residents into paid 2-hour parking in hopes of encouraging visitors to park in garages versus on the street, therefore opening the street for residents to park. This new program on different blocks of Old Town has been implemented on a case by case basis so far are hopefully will help to allow residents to park closer to their home.




If you have guests coming into town over an extended period of time, The City of Alexandria offers different types of guest passes at little to no cost. Visitor permits can range from 24 hours to 30 days. You are allowed only one permit per household. Here are the different guest parking permits:

24 Hour Guest Pass:  This is something you can print at home or pick up at City Hall. It is quick and easy. To create an online account, click here.  These are perfect if you are not able to get to City Hall the day that your guests arrive.

Visitor Permit: Visitor permits for the vehicle of a person who stays at a residence within a permit parking district for more than 24 hours. The City is temporarily allowing Guest permits to be renewed for up to seven consecutive days. There is no charge for a “Guest” permit, or for a “Visitor” permit for seven days or less.

Long-Term Passes: These need to be requested at City Hall, and can be used for up to 30 days. Residents are not able to renew these and you are not able to get two visitor passes at one time. If your guest pass is longer than seven days the fee is $5. When applying for this pass be sure to have your visitor’s car make and model in addition to their tag number.

Business Permits:  What if you have contractors working on your home? The city also offers Business permits for contractors. You are allowed three business parking permits at one time, and there is no charge for these passes. Residents can call city hall with any questions about Business Permits and length of time they are permitted. 


Visiting Old Town for the day? There are quite a few options for parking. There are covered garages, parking lots as well as street parking. If you do not want to be on the hunt for a spot, it may be best to head to a garage or lot. If you choose to park on the street, be sure to pay close attention to the signs. Some allow parking without payment for a few hours, while other streets closer to King Street or Washington require payments Monday through Saturday (not including holidays).

Not sure if you should pay? If you use the Park Mobile payment app, it usually notifies you if you are paying at a time when you do not have to. Here is a map of all the garage and surface lot for parking in Old Town Alexandria, don’t forget you can always hop on the trolly that goes down King Street if you have to park far away! 

Now that you know the best ways for parking in Old Town Alexandria be sure to check out of Best of Old Town series on each Quadrant.