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Where to park my new Mini

7394 Views 30 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  polarisboy385
My car should be arriving soon and I'm wondering what is the best way to go about parking it?

Here in the States we seldom park on the street. Most of us park in parking lots in front of stores. This means there is usually a car parked on either side of your car.

Obviously I don't want my car to get any dings or scratches, so the other option would be to park it on the outskirts of the parking lot (further away from the store), where there are fewer cars parked and chances are you can park without having a car right next to yours.

I'm worried about parking farther away because this will make my Mini stand out, and would this make it more likely to be vandalized?

So which is best, parking it among other cars and risking someone slamming their door into your car, or parking far away and risking it drawing attention?

Sorry if I sound paranoid!
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I try to park between smaller cars, or further away. I also try to make sure my mini's butt is at the edge of the entrance of the parking spot so I don't get people driving into it by accident thinking it's empty.

I also accidentally ALMOST parked so close to the curb that I almost scratched the bottom of my bumper... I am used to driving a big 4x4 and I would drive up tot he curb without problems... not this time! I have to worry about being so much lower to the ground :)
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I am the paranoid king of parking.

I find the largest, furthest parking spot. I especially like the spots next to handicap parking because (a) the handicap slots are HUGE and amost always empty and (b) You can gain an inch or two by crowding the yellow lines that delimit the handicap slot. If you are adventurous you can sometimes get away with crowding most of the yellow line, though past a point you risk a ticket, and there is the off chance that some deserving soul with a gigantic vehicle will take up the whole slot and expose your baby to damage.

Study the parking lot. There might be a slightly wider spot somewhere where the geometry didn't quite work out.

Note the wind direction. I have seen clueless people open doors in a strong wind and have the door fly out of their hands to ding the car next to them.

Don't park in the middle of anything. I got hit by some idiot in a landscaping truck who backed halfway across the parking lot to ding the car.

Don't be a jerk and take up two spaces, that is inviting a keying. In fact, don't be annoying in any way if you can avoid it.

Park where you can monitor the car. If you see some idiot approaching, go out and move your car.

If somebody has parked next to you despite your best efforts, double check for dings before driving away. If they got you, you can deal with it if you are aggressive. Don't be a jerk, chances are they didn't mean to ding you, they're just clueless dolts.

Use any available cover. Light poles, trees, trash, derelict vehicles. Dumpsters are great, they usually take up a space and a half and you can use that safe space to your advantage. Just make sure the truck isn't coming to pick up the dumpster, though! I have even toyed with the idea of bringing my own "debris" to place in the spot next to me to discourage door-dingers from parking adjacent. Let us know if you try that and it works!

The key is to put the car far enough away that it is out of the traffic flow, and not in a place that people will want to walk direct to and from their vehicles. Traffic means some numbnuts might drive into you, and foot traffic means subhumans might randomly vandalize your car on the way to buy their hooch. Don't give anyone a reason to walk past your car.

Pay attention to the slope of the parking lot (especially in a supermarket lot). Never park downhill from any occupied spots (because Gooberhead is sure to lose control of his shopping cart and blam!). In shopping center lots there is a corral for the carts-- Often a good thing to park next to, just be sure you are uphill from anything else. Clueless dolts will launch their carts from half a mile away in the vague direction of the corral, which is a problem because the carts are drawn magically towards nice cars. But an uphill slope means the idiot will have to manually put the cart in there, and her probably won't hit your car.

Find another nice car to park next to. If some guy is obviously trying to protect his car, do him a favor and guard the other side. I find that people who care about their cars will generally be careful of another nice car next to them. Just don't park 3 inches away without their permission.

Avoid child care parking lots like the plague. Ditto for any place that teenagers park. Never ever park at the closest spot to anything worth going to, even if the slots are huge.

Bottom line, be paranoid. The world is full of Door Ding Idiots and they are reproducing. They really want to ding your car, but you are smarter than them.
LOL WOW.. you ARE the king of parking... haha.. checking the wind, bringing garbage with you is fantastic! I've had some dope exit her car as I was walking up to my Nitro a year ago and she slammed my car 3 - 4 times with the wind as she was trying to get out with a itty bitty skirt and super high heels. She refused to knowledge that she did damage after I called her on it and gave me attitude.. I was pissed but luckily it was only the rubbery "bumper" part of the car that she hit. That part used to get hit a lot.. I'm worried the mini doesn't have that and thus an instant dent :/

Also another horrendous story.. sometimes I felt I was in a rush, parked beside someone that seemed sketchy "usually a big green van"... surely enough I come back my wheel well was scraped (dodge nitros have big wheel wells that stick out)... So... always follow your instincts...

Another story!! (I'm full of parking stories I guess)... I was at a house party and parked my vehicle on a lawn that had 30 - 50 cars in the winter.. there was nowhere else to park but on a curb... i kept leaving the party to check up on the car.. I was super worried about it. The first time I checked, it was fine.. the second time I checked, someone had put a cup of beer on the back of my bumper... then the 3rd time, when it was time to leave... there was this huuuuuge GASH the size of 2 credit cards side by side scratched all along my wheel wells. GREAT!

Moral of my stories.. if you have a bad feeling.. move your car. Always.
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