iPhone users have been able to use Apple Maps to help find their parked cars for some time, but now, the company is making it easier to find somewhere to park in the first place. Apple has announced a new Apple Maps feature in partnership with SpotHero, a parking reservation service, that will allow users to find and reserve parking spots directly through the Apple Maps app.
The new feature, which will be available in select cities in the United States and Canada, will allow users to search for parking near their destination and see real-time availability and pricing for SpotHero garages and lots. Once a spot has been selected, users will be able to reserve and pay for their parking through the Apple Maps app, eliminating the need to search for parking or pay for it in person. Once you checkout, your parking spot is guaranteed. The app will issue a digital parking pass, allowing you to bypass on-site payment stops and drive right into the lot.
In a statement to TechCrunch, SpotHero CEO & Co-Founder Mark Lawrence said, “We’re constantly identifying new ways to bring easy, affordable parking to drivers. Working with Apple Maps is one way we’re doing this. Through our new integration, Apple Maps users can discover SpotHero parking right in the Apple Maps on iPhone and Mac.”
How SpotHero aims to save you time and money
SpotHero has parking information for over 8,000 locations across 300 North American cities. The company says you can save up to 50% on parking by booking in advance, and you can also cut down on the roaming time needed to find viable parking spaces in busy areas of town. In addition to on-demand parking, SpotHero makes it easy to find and book monthly parking passes in dozens of cities.
This service has been around for more than a decade, and Apple users already had the means to use it in their vehicles through the CarPlay-enabled in-dash units by downloading it from the App Store. Apple Maps users will be able to save their favorite parking spots and receive notifications when their parking reservation is about to expire. The feature will also integrate with Apple Pay, allowing users to easily pay for their parking with their saved payment methods.
The feature will be tucked away a bit within Apple Maps. Once you’ve zeroed in on the location you want to go, you can tap the “more” button, and then tap “parking” to see a list of nearby lots and rates. You’ll see ratings for each lot, too. This might seem odd at first, but just like the restaurants you frequent, not all parking lots and spaces are created equally. You’ll appreciate being given a heads-up about anything murky before deciding to leave your expensive mode of transportation there.