UPDATED: Montreal’s free parking not so free when using the app


UPDATE: I believe in the concept of credit where credit is due, so I am posting this update. In response to my post last week, the parking authorities have contacted me to ‘own their error’, apologize for it and assure me that all who paid will be reimbursed. Just when you thought customer service was dead,

What the current mayor of Montreal, Valerie Plante, has in store for the downtown core is not a vision I share. A vast reduction in the number of parking spaces, wider sidewalks, and narrower streets, all lead to people going elsewhere to do their shopping. Malls that provide ample free parking will be the big winners.

However, Ms. Plante has recently announced that once again this holiday season, starting on Friday, December 3, 2021, in an effort to draw people to stores …

However, Ms. Plante has recently announced that once again this holiday season, starting on Friday, December 3, 2021, in an effort to draw people to stores and restaurants, parking in the downtown borough of Ville-Marie will be free evenings and weekends. Wonderful idea,

Last weekend was the first featuring free parking; I completely forgot. On Sunday afternoon I found a parking spot on Cresent Street in the Ville-Marie borough, no mean task. I pulled in, took my iPhone in hand, and opened the P$ Mobile Service app. I entered the information and dutifully paid for two hours. The princely sum of $7.07 was charged to my credit card.

Evidently, when you use the parking meters and pay at the various kiosks, payment will not be accepted. A message informs would-be payers that their parking is free. Yet, no such message appeared on my iPhone!

Once I arrived at my destination, the topic of the mayor’s free parking scheme was brought up, and I was confused. Evidently, when you use the parking meters and pay at the various kiosks, payment will not be accepted. A message informs would-be payers that their parking is free. Yet, no such message appeared on my iPhone!

Above is the email clearly informing me that I had paid for two hours of parking, but just as clearly indicating that those two hours fall well within the free parking period. My hunch is that while the City has adjusted the payment kiosks, the third-party parking application had not done so, and therefore was still accepting payments.

I figure if they can process the payments so fast, even those that should not have been accepted, certainly they can provide a refund within a reasonable period of time. Then again, as I have learned, you just can’t fight City Hall.

I have informed the good folks at the P$ Mobile Service app, complete with documentation (had we been living in the time of Arlo Guthrie I would have included circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back). I figure if they can process the payments so fast, even those that should not have been accepted, certainly they can provide a refund within a reasonable period of time. Then again, as I have learned, you just can’t fight City Hall. I wonder how many other people made the same mistake.

Stay tuned.

Published by DCMontreal

DCMontreal - Deegan Charles Stubbs - is a Montreal writer born and raised who likes to establish balance and juxtapositions; a bit of this and a bit of that, a dash of Yin and a soupçon of Yang, some Peaks and an occasional Frean and maybe a bit of a sting in the tail! Please follow DCMontreal on Twitter and on Facebook, and add him on Google+

2 thoughts on “UPDATED: Montreal’s free parking not so free when using the app

  1. hello Deegan, this is Gord Reid in Vancouver ( we knew each other through Pete Hoppe) I saw your story on the sensational Webster murders in Westmount in 1943. FYI, George spent his life in an asylum and Mina, his sister who survived, just died last week. Her funeral was today.
    Cool to see you writing about Montreal.
    Sincerely
    Gord

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