How to Park a Motorcycle & Scooter in NYC

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Motorcycles have an obvious advantage in NYC street parking, but there are still risks of theft, vandalism, damage, and ticketing. Here are some tips to find a spot and keep it safe.

Find a Spot:

  • Try, online or as an iPhone or Android app, to find available on‐street and garage parking. A map shows the regulations for each block, including pictures of the signage.
  • Be sure to know the alternate side rules for your block, and the many street cleaning holidays. Check the list out at, where you can download to Outlook, iCal, or Google Calendar.

Park Right:

  • You must park at an approximately 90° angle with your rear tire to the curb.
  • Don’t pull your plate. You might think it will spare you a ticket, but you’ve just turned your ride into an abandoned vehicle, subject to tow.
  • You may park in a metered space with another vehicle as long as the meter doesn’t expire.

Avoid Damage:

  • Stay away from high‐trafficked areas like fire hydrants, corners, and driveways. The more car movement there is, the greater the risk of your motorcycle getting hit.
  • Cover your bike to prevent minor scratches; choose a light color to stand out to drivers.
  • Don’t leave your front tire hanging out in traffic.
  • Use highly reflective tape or paint on your bike or cover to stand out to parkers at night.
  • Make sure your bike is firmly planted on its kickstand or centerstand and not too tippy in any direction.

Prevent Theft:

  • There are professional thieves, and there are opportunists. If you’ve got something of interest to the former, they will eventually find a way to foil your security efforts. But much can be done to deter theft of your vehicle in all circumstances.
  • Cover your bike; it could just be a rat bike underneath, and there’s likely something shinier up the road.
  • Be friendly with the business owners, residents, and doormen where you park regularly; they’ll be your eyes when you’re not around, and may pass along information to you in case of an incident.
  • Use multiple methods: a steering lock, disc brake lock, and a wheel chained up (especially to a stationary object) will take too long for most thieves to defeat.
  • Consider comprehensive insurance; the rates are higher, but you may save in the long run.
  • Consider an alarm with a pager or ignition cutoff.
  • Park near others, especially other motorcycles, in well‐lit, foot‐trafficked areas.

Go Indoors:

  • Check out some of the motorcycle‐only garages in NYC: Rising Wolf (East Village), Ryders Alley (Financial Dist.), Works Engineering (N Williamsburg), MotoGrrl (Williamsburg)