Skip to main content

Parking signs and rules

A simple guide to some of the most misunderstood parking rules in the City of Melbourne.

An outdoor car parking area with signs and ticket machines.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​This is a helpful guide only. VicRoads also provides a​ guide to parking rulesOpens in new tab​. You should refer to the Road RulesOpens in new tab for the specific wording.

Road Rules

Most (97 per cent) of the parking fines we issue relate to:

  • Parking for too long
  • Payment for parking
  • Stopping in no stopping areas
  • Stopping where you aren’t eligible.

Road rules and offence types

You must park for no longer than the time limit shown on a parking sign (for example, ‘1P’ = 1 hour).

The time limit starts when your vehicle stops in the parking space.

Making payment is a separate requirement. It does not start, re-start or extend the time limit.

If you need to park for longer, you must drive to another parking area.

This is Road Rule 205 (Offence code 701) - Parked for period longer than indicated. ​

Parking sign with the words '2P meter, 7am to 10pm, Monday to Friday' in green.

If a parking sign states ‘meter’ or ‘ticket’ you must pay for parking and obey any time limit.

A sign stating ‘1P Meter’ = 1 hour time limit and pay for parking using the meter.

For ‘meter’, follow the sign to the correct meter and follow the instructions there to pay.

For ‘ticket’, follow the sign to the correct machine, purchase a ticket and display it correctly.

Tip: once you close your car, check the ticket is clearly visible on the dashboard.  

This is Road Rule 207 (Offence code 702) - Meter expired / No valid ticket. ​

Parking sign indicating '4P ticket, 7am to 10pm, Saturday and Sunday'.

‘No Stopping’ areas have signs displaying the letter ‘S’ with a line through it.

You must not stop a vehicle for any reason, even for a moment, in a No Stopping area.

Stopping is an offence even if the engine is running, people are in the vehicle or the hazard lights are on.

These areas are used to maintain safety, traffic flow and turning room or to restrict stopping to authorised vehicles.

This is Road Rule 167 (Offence code 793) – Stopped in a No Stopping area. 

Parking sign indicating no stopping from 4pm to 7pm, Monday to Friday.

Around 10 per cent of fines relate to stopping or parking in restricted or special use parking spaces.

Loading Zones 

Only eligible vehicles​ can use Loading Zones when picking up or dropping off passengers or goods.

Regular passenger vehicles must not stop in Loading Zones for any reason.

​If a Loading Zone sign does not state a time limit, a default 30-minute limit applies.

This is Road Rule 179 (Offence codes 720, 721, 722) – Stopped in a Loading Zone.

A sign indicating a loading zone for 30 minutes ffrom 7am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Permit Zones 

You must correctly display the type of permit stated on the sign to stop in a Permit Zone.

For example, you can park in a Permit Zone that specifies Area 1a on the sign if you display a valid Area 1a Resident Parking Permit.

This is Road Rule 185 (Offence code 728) – Stopped in a Permit Zone.

Parking sign indicating a permit zone for Area 1a resident permit holders, from 7am to 11pm, Monday to Friday.

Taxi Zones 

​Only taxis can stop in Taxi Zones.

Other vehicles, including ride share services like Uber, must not stop in a Taxi Zone for any reason, even for a moment.

This is Road Rule 182 (Offence code 726) – Stopped in a Taxi Zone.

Taxi Zone parking sign.

Disability parking areas 

You must correctly display an Australian Disability Parking permit to park in a disability parking area.

The driver must be the permit holder, or be transporting the permit holder as a passenger.

You must not park for longer than the time limit shown on the sign. Your permit does not extend this time in an area already designated for disability parking.

This is Road Rule 203 (Offence code 803) – Stopping in a parking area for people with​.

2P disabled only parking sign.

Rules without signs

Many statutory parking rules do not require a sign.

As a condition of a driver license, you are expected to understand these rules, including: ​​​

You must not park within 20 metres of an intersection that has traffic lights.

You must not park within 10 metres of any other intersection. 

You must not stop on a nature strip or footpath for any reason, even for a moment.

Nature strips are not always covered with grass or plants.

Only motorcycles can park on a footpath (unless signs state they cannot).

Motorcycles on the footpath must not obstruct pedestrians or access points. 

You can stop across a driveway for up to two minutes to drop off or pick up passengers.

You must not park or leave your vehicle blocking any part of a driveway, even if you own the property.

Obstructing access to a driveway is a risk in the event of an emergency. ​

You must park facing the same direction as moving traffic in the next lane.

Facing the wrong way can cause a safety risk when entering or leaving the area. ​

Signs with multiple panels

Parking signs may have more than one panel.

Check all panels on the parking sign every time you park.

Make sure that another restriction, such as ‘Bus Zone – all other times’, won’t come into effect during the time you intend to park.

Multiple panels allow or restrict different uses of a space on different days, or times of day.

Parking on public holidays

On public holidaysOpens in new tab​, always check the parking signs.

The application of a sign panel on a public holiday depends on whether a day of the week is stated on the panel. ​​

If any day of the week is stated on the parking sign, that sign doesn’t apply on a public holiday.

For example, ‘2P Meter, Mon-Fri, 7am-10pm’ would not apply on a public holiday.

Some examples of signs that would not apply on a public holiday are below:  

Parking sign with the words '2P meter, 7am to 10pm, Monday to Friday' in green.
Parking sign indicating 2P, 7am to 10pm, Sunday.
A sign indicating a loading zone for 30 minutes ffrom 7am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

When a sign doesn’t apply, you can park there with no time limit and pay no fee.

This is explained in Road Rule 318, which applies throughout Victoria.

This is because parking demand on a public holiday is usually quite different to the day of the week when the condition is designed to apply. 

Signs without any day of the week stated on them apply every day, even on public holidays.

For example, ‘Permit Zone, Area 1a Resident, 7am-11pm’ would apply every day.

Some examples of signs that would apply every day are below: ​

Parking sign indicating an Area 1a resident permit zone from 7am to 11pm.
Sign indicating a bus zone.
2P disabled only parking sign.

When a public holiday falls on a weekend, the Victorian Government​Opens in new tab may declare a day in lieu.

When this occurs, Melbourne City Council has decided to apply public holiday parking rules on the public holiday and the day in lieu.

For example, if Australia Day fell on a Sunday, and the Monday was declared as the day in lieu, parking would be unrestricted and free in the City of Melbourne on both Sunday and Monday (anywhere signs had days of the week stated on them).

This applies only to the municipality of Melbourne. It is intended to minimise confusion in cases where the event commemorated occurs on a different day to the officially gazetted public holiday. ​

A quiet residential street with cars parked along the kerb.

Better parking in your neighbourhood

Parking improvements

We’re delivering our Parking and Kerbside Management Plan. That means we’re reviewing and revising the parking in all neighbourhoods across the City of Melbourne to make parking simpler and fairer. Improvements include cheaper rates for off-peak times and free parking for short stops under 15 minutes with the EasyPark app.

our acknowledgement

  • Torres Strait Islander Flag
  • Aboriginal People Flag

The City of Melbourne respectfully acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land we govern, the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung and Bunurong / Boon Wurrung peoples of the Kulin and pays respect to their Elders past and present. 


We acknowledge and honour the unbroken spiritual, cultural and political connection they have maintained to this unique place for more than 2000 generations.

We accept the invitation in the Uluru Statement from the Heart and are committed to walking together to build a better future.