Parking fees, fines and vehicle clamping


A system of parking fees, restrictions, fines and clamping is in place in towns and cities in Ireland. This is to stop illegal parking, which can block other motorists or businesses.

Traffic wardens and an Garda Síochána are responsible for enforcing laws relating to illegal parking. Your local authority is responsible for creating bye-laws that list the places in your area where parking fees will be in place. It also decides the cost of parking fees.

Parking fees vary in Ireland and can be set and adjusted by your local authority.


Most local authority websites have details of parking restrictions and the type of pay parking in their area. You can also get details of car park locations, rates and the location of disabled parking spaces. Alternatively, you can contact the relevant local authority to get these details.

Paying for parking

The way you pay for parking varies, depending on where you park. There are signs in areas where you have to pay giving details of when you must pay for parking and the maximum time you can park there. Payment methods include:

  • Pay and display: this lets you pay for parking by using a meter. Hourly prices vary depending on where you park.
  • Parking tag: this lets you pay for parking using your mobile device. This service is available in certain pay-and-display areas. More information is available at
  • Parkbytext: lets you pay for parking in specific locations using your mobile device. Read more about how it works on
  • Disc parking: lets you pay for parking by purchasing a parking disc in a participating newsagents or shop. The disc should be displayed clearly on your windscreen. This service operates in some cities and smaller towns.

Permit parking

If there is on-street parking in operation on the street where you live, you can get a resident's permit from the traffic division of your local authority to park there. Your permit identifies the name of your street and varies in price depending on your location. Each car owner can be issued with one permit, and no more than four permits are issued to applicants of any one household. If you live in a house that has been divided up into more than one unit of accommodation, you are only entitled to one parking permit per unit. Residents of purpose built apartment blocks are not eligible for residents' permits.

Private car parks

Private car parks are not regulated by the Government and revenue earned from parking there goes directly to the owners of the car parks. The prices charged in private car parks vary, and generally range from around 80 cent to €4.00 per hour. Prices are determined by the car park owner. You will usually be issued a ticket when you go into the car park and pay for parking when you leave.

Parking restrictions

Parking is restricted during business hours in certain parts of most towns and cities. During these hours, you are not allowed to obstruct clearways, bus lanes and loading zones. Parking signs on these streets will clearly display the hours that restrictions are in operation. Disabled parking spaces are off limits at all times, unless you have an appropriate permit. See our document on Parking Permits for Disabled Drivers.

Parking fines

There is a system of fines in place for illegal parking and non-payment of parking fees. You get a parking ticket when you have been issued with a fine.

If you get a parking fine, you must pay the fine to the traffic division of the local authority within 28 days of the date of the fixed charge notice. If you fail to pay within the allotted 28 days, the charge increases by 50%. If the fine is unpaid after a further 28 days, court proceedings are initiated. Details of where you can pay your parking fine should be written on your parking ticket. If you fail to pay your parking fine and aren’t formally appealing the fine, you can be prosecuted.

Penalty points

Some parking offences incur penalty points. For example, if you are convicted of parking dangerously, you will receive 5 penalty points and a fine. Read more about the penalty points system.

Vehicle clamping

Vehicle clamping is in operation in some areas. Clamping services are operated by private companies on behalf of the local authority. Employees of the vehicle clamping company can clamp vehicles and issue clamping notices for vehicles that are in violation of the parking regulations. The National Transport Authority is responsible for the regulation of clamping.

Tow-away system

Local authorities are allowed to tow-away vehicles that have been abandoned or illegally parked on a public road or in a local authority car park. Vehicles are towed to a car pound and you may be charged a significant fee for their release. If you think your car has been towed away, you should contact the local authority responsible for the area where you parked.

Motorist from other countries

Under a cross-border project with Northern Ireland, motorists from Northern Ireland who fail to pay parking fees or toll charges here can be pursued. The Driver and Vehicle Agency in Northern Ireland will forward the motorist's details to the appropriate local authority for parking offences or Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) for tolls. Similarly, if you fail to pay a parking fee or toll in Northern Ireland, your details can be passed to the authorities in Northern Ireland.

Motorists from other countries such as Poland, France or Germany can be pursued for non-payment of tolls through a separate arrangement which Transport Infrastructure Ireland has with these countries. It uses the services of a specialist parking and tolling enforcement agency.


Different fines apply depending on where your car has been ticketed, clamped or towed away from. The cost of the fine also depends on whether you have parked in a statutory area or a non-statutory area.

A statutory area is an area under the direction of a local authority. Examples of statutory areas include public roads, airports and harbours.

A non-statutory area is an area not under the direction of a local authority. This includes private car parks and private residential parking.

Rates in statutory areas (public road, airport or harbour)

If you commit a parking offence in a statutory area, you may get a fine, have your vehicle clamped, or have your vehicle impounded. There is a system of fixed charge fines for illegal parking and other related offences.

Rates in non-statutory areas (private carpark or private residential parking)

If you park your vehicle in a non-statutory area and fail to pay the relevant parking fee, or your ticket has expired, your vehicle may be clamped. Your vehicle may also be clamped if you breach the terms and conditions that apply where you parked.

The maximum fees for clamping, re-locating and impounding vehicles in non-statutory areas are:


Maximum fee

Where your vehicle has been clamped €125
Where your vehicle has been relocated within a clamping place €50
Where your vehicle has been relocated within a clamping place and clamped €150
Where your vehicle has been relocated to a pound €150 and an additional €50 in respect of each additional day (or part thereof) the vehicle is situated in the pound.

Parking laws

There are a number of laws and regulations that govern parking and clamping including:

How to make a complaint or appeal

Complaints and appeals

If you have been clamped on a public road, airport or harbour

If you are clamped in a statutory area (an area under the direction of a local authority), and want to make a complaint or appeal the clamping fee, you should contact your local authority. You should write to or email the relevant authorities to make your complaint. You should give details of the situation and enclose any documents that could help your case. Most complaints will be acknowledged within a few days. Your claim will be investigated and you should receive a response within a month.

If you want to appeal a parking ticket

You can also appeal a parking ticket issued in a local authority area, if you feel you have been fined unfairly. Take as much detail of the scene as you can (photographs, details of road markings, etc.) and send them to the local authority traffic division with your parking ticket and a letter outlining your complaint.

If you are clamped or have your vehicle relocated from a non-statutory area, such as a private car park, and you want to appeal the decision, you should complain to the owner of the parking place in writing, within 60 days of the date of getting the clamp.

If your clamping appeal is unsuccessful and you are not satisfied with the outcome, you can further appeal the decision to the National Transport Authority (NTA). Note that the NTA has no role in parking fine appeals, and these should be addressed to the local authority.

Page edited: 11 October 2021