Parking Krakow

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Tourists from Germany and Austria often come to Krakow by their own car. Many book a hotel in the center of Krakow. It makes sense to book a hotel with parking. Then the car is usually safe in the hotel parking lot. You save the search for a parking place and the car is directly at the hotel.

If you book a hotel without a parking lot or if you visit Krakow for a day trip by car, you have to look for a parking place. Most of the time you can find a parking place, but there are no free parking places in the center of Krakow. We did not see any public parking garages, as we did.

Public parking Krakow

The inner city area of Krakow is divided into 3 zones. In all of them parking is paid. If you don’t pay or park longer than paid, you get a ticket. Mostly this costs 20 to 40 Euros. If you park too long or in a no-parking zone or similar, you can also get a parking ticket.

In the inner area around the old town, parking costs 6 zlody per hour (about 1.30 euros), in the middle zone 5 zlody (about 1.10 euros) and in the outer zone 4 zlody (about 85 cents) per hour. In the suburbs, several kilometers from the center, you can park for free.

You pay the parking fee in Krakow at the ticket machine. Either with coins (1, 2 or 5 Zlody coins) or at some parking machines also with credit card like Visa or Master Card. However, the parking machines we tried to use in Poland did not take EC cards. It is best to bring enough coins. There is no change at the machines, the parking time you buy is equal to the coins you put in.

Some machines are a bit complicated. You have to enter the license plate number and so on. However, you can switch these modern parking machines to English.

There are many parking ticket machines, at the roadside every 50 to 100 meters, but often only on one side of the street.

Our parking claw: We parked outside the fee zone in a residential area for several days in the fall of 2022. Then we went with Bolt (cab by smartphone app similar to Uber) for the equivalent of 4 euros to the hotel in the old town of Krakow. When we got back to the car after 5 days, we had a parking claw. It took us over an hour to find the correct phone number for the correct authority. The lady at our hotel reception then called there for us. For almost an hour the number was busy. After the phone call, the city police was at the car after 10 minutes, The parking claw was removed. Our fear of a heavy fine was not confirmed. The police wanted only 100 zlody (21 euros) for parking in a cab parking lot including the removal of the parking claw. However, without a receipt. We don’t know if the policemen put the money into their own pockets. We were just glad that we could drive on.

Private parking Krakow (Our tip)

Parking is a big business in Krakow and all over Poland. Many unused private lots, lots of former companies, backyards, etc. become parking lots. Many are guarded 24 hours a day. In a small cottage, you pay an employee in cash or by card. The prices are different. We paid 200 meters from the central main market in the old town 13 euros for 24 hours. The car number is stored, you can leave and enter as often as you want. All very uncomplicated, especially because there is an employee who speaks English and not a machine. Also, one has the feeling on the private parking lots that the employees watch over the cars a bit (often they advertise with “guarded parking lot”). You can also park in these private parking lots only for a few hours. There is usually a price for one hour (usually under 10 zlody, 2 euros) and a price for 24 hours (typically 40 to 80 zlody, 9 to 18 euros, price depends mainly on the location of the parking lot).

Our favorite parking place in Krakow not far from the Old Town is in Karmelicka street, coming from the Old Town just after Garbarek street after the church. 60 zlody, 13 euros, per day in 2023. The employees speak good English. You can also pay by card. Payment also possible for several days.

Conclusion: We like private parking in Krakow and all of Poland better than public parking with the complicated Polish parking ticket machines. Moreover, parking in private parking lots is, according to our impression, a bit safer. You can pay for several days at the private parking in Krakow, with card or cash.