A ton of people have asked about Barcelona parking so here I am with another post.
In this article I’ll open all the information doors for you whether you’re looking to find free parking in the suburbs, pay parking central, long stay parking, or even hotels with parking included.
Then I’ll explain all the costs associated so you can keep it cheap.
Driving in Barcelona
First off let me say that parking in Barcelona is a bit of a pain in the ass – if you can avoid it, do it.
Especially if you’re looking at excursions outside of the city renting a car is a great option for visiting. I always book at Rentalcars.com for the best prices but if you’re curious you can compare their rates to other means of transport in my Barcelona transport guide.
In any case if you’ve decided to visit Barcelona with a car I’m going to break down the city’s parking options bit by bit.
If you just want to park on the street the first thing you’ll need to know is the various line colours that define each parking space.
Like your city or town these street spots can either be free, pay, or reserved for residents depending on the location.
- Blue lines: this is paid car parking for everybody, albeit with a time limit (from 1 to 4 hours depending on the part of the city).
- Green lines:
- «Area resident». These are reserved for residents of Barcelona (indicated by license plates). They are paid parking between 8 am and 8 pm from Monday to Friday. If you’re traveling with a friend who has a car registered in Barcelona this is an option.
- «Area preferent». These spaces are for everybody although non-residents will pay a higher price than locals and they won’t be able to stay longer than an hour between 8 am and 8 pm on weekdays. The cost is paid at parking meters. Make sure you read all the instructions and limitations on the meter to ensure there are no exceptions.
- White lines: this is free parking for everybody. There is no time limit but if you’re looking to leave your car for a long time it can’t hurt to check up on it and move it around every now and then.
- Yellow lines: these are not car parking spaces and are reserved for emergency vehicles.
All of Barcelona’s central neighbourhoods are paid (blue or green).
The hourly rates aren’t cheap especially if it’s central. For this reason I suggest parking in the streets only for small periods of time (like offloading luggage or a quick visit to one of Barcelona’s best attractions)
My disheartening advice for people arriving in Barcelona by car is to leave it in one of the free parking zones on the city’s periphery. Preferably near a metro stop. You can leave it here without the worry and save money, especially if you get yourself a discount transport card like the Hola BCN.
If you’re going to do this I suggest the area called Palau Reial.
This area is primarily for offices and there’s not a lot of local traffic and commotion. Plus with access to the green line (L3) of the metro you’ll be central in about 10 minutes.
You could also leave it in the Sagrera neighbourhood (red line L1, blue line L5, orange line L9N). This up and coming residential area near Sagrada Familia church is another tranquil car drop spot.
Again, look at the place you’re staying to figure out which is better from a movement standpoint.
It’s common sense but please ensure you don’t leave any valuables in the car, even though these neighborhoods are safe Barcelona does have a bit of a petty crime problem and there’s no sense risking ruining the holiday.
Long Term Parking
If you don’t trust leaving your car in the street there are some convenient long-term parking options.
Many of the options however are quite expensive so if you’re looking at cutting costs it could be an uphill battle. Generally prices will be between €2.00-€4.00 an hour depending on whether the spot is covered and what area it’s in.
The cheapest long term parking options are in Parc del Fòrum or Zona Franca, but these are quite far out. For the best prices and most flexibility I recommend getting it reserved online.
Parclick – Cheap Parking in Barcelona
To get yourself parking without spending a mint I suggest Parclick.
This online Barcelona parking reservation system makes it a breeze. Once you’ve found your accommodation simply put your holiday apartment or hostel address, type of vehicle, and the trip duration and you’ll get a custom list of the city’s best nearby parking spots.
At cheap prices.
It’s all booked online and taken care of using a code you’re sent at the moment of purchase.
Looking for multiple spaces? Parclick also offers the multi-park package that will give you access to about 40 different car parking spots in Barcelona, from which you’ll be able to come and go as you please: a great option if you’re going to see a lot of attractions all the way to Mount Tibidabo.
The multipark package costs as little as €12.50 a day. This is an amazing deal considering that normally you’ll be paying around €40.00 a day for parking in Barcelona.
For more information click the blue button below:
Barcelona Hotels with Parking
There are a ton of hotels and discount Airbnb homestays with parking in Barcelona.
I suggest using the in-depth search feature of Booking.com – there you’ll be able to select your dates and use the filter to list the hotels with parking. Just be careful because sometimes the parking isn’t included in the price.
In the meantime I’ve compiled a list of some great Barcelona hotels with parking below:
Area: Eixample | Carrer del Comte Urgell 51 bis | Metro: Urgell | Rating: 8.2
This very central hotel offers clean, comfortable, and modern options whether you’re looking for private rooms, dorm rooms, or even your own apartment. It’s even got its own bar and games room.
Catalonia Atenas Hotel
Area: Sant Marti | Avenida Meridiana 15 | Metro: Clot | Rating: 7.9
Even though it’s slightly outside the main tourist areas it’s still well connected to the city with the metro. What you get here is a quality modern hotel with a spectacular rooftop pool, gym, and a spa with a Turkish bath.
Here you’ll get private car parking from only €20.00 a day.
Hostal Balmes Centro
Area: Eixample | Carrer Balmes 83 | Metro: Passeig de Gracia | Rating: 7.5
You’ll find this right in the heart of attraction-heavy Eixample with places like Casa Batllo: the best point of departure to visit the city. This boutique style hotel has very helpful staff and flat-screen TVs.
The cost of parking there is €25.00 a day.
Barcelona Cruise Port Parking
If you’re arriving by cruise ship with a car you’ll be able to leave it near Barcelona cruise port. There are many parking lots in the surrounding area of the different terminals and it all depends on the duration of your stay.
Right near the World Trade Center and just steps from the famous La Rambla you’ll find a parking lot with 900 spots dedicated to cruise ship passengers. On nearby Passeig de Colom there’s parking at the BSM Moll de la Fusta, but prices are steep.
Again, I suggest anyone look at the port options on discount parking site Parclick.
Fines and Towing
Barcelona car parking spots are tough because the officials here are pretty trigger-happy.
In the unfortunate case you go back to your spot and don’t find your car and find a triangle adhesive on the ground it means that they’ve removed the car. It’s here that you’ll get the address of where you can pick up the car, what documents you need, and a number to call for more info.
The minimum cost of getting towed is €170.00.
You may get a 15% discount if you have a clean record and are cooperative, but I am not sure if this applies to foreign licenses or not. At any rate, make sure you don’t end up in this position!
Also keep in mind that fines increase by the day so you’ll need to pick it up as soon as possible at the following central tow truck yards that are open 24/7 for payment:
- Carrer Badajoz 168 (metro: Gloriès)
- Parc Joan Miro, Calle Tarragona (metro: Espanya)
- Passeig de la Vall d’Hebron 138 (metro: Vall d’Hebron)
There are also two yards which don’t accept 24/7 payment and you’ll likely have to pay at the above yards first before reclaiming your vehicle. Check your ticket for the location. They are the following:
- Carrer Ciutat de Asunción (metro: Torres i Bages)
- Avenida del Ferrocarril 11-13 (at the industrial estate Can Estapé, reached by the FGC Rubí train or the Sarbus nº 2, both in the direction of Pol. Ind Rubí Sud).
If you’ve got the European disabled parking decal you’ll be able to park in Barcelona for free.
As in your own country you can leave the car in any spot reserved for disabled drivers, indicated as always by the wheelchair symbol as well as the blue and green line spots.
For further information on visiting Barcelona with a disability check out my disabled access guide.
Park Your Words in the Comments Below
Still haven’t got everything you need out of this article? Then make sure you write me below for custom advice on Barcelona parking or anything else connected to your holiday.
Happy travels 🙂