Parking in Cape May
In high season, finding parking places in Cape May can be exasperating. The center of town collects much of the traffic and has few available free parking spaces. Most spaces are metered. The good news is that no matter where you park in Cape May, you're probably no more than a 20-minute walk to the center of town.
- Parking Meters
Meters are in effect every day from May 1 through October 31, between 10AM and 10PM.
Parking meters are $0.25 for 15 minutes. All meters accept quarters. Make sure you feed your meter; the penalty for overtime parking is a $32.00 parking ticket.
The meters on the streets behind the Washington Street Mall accept quarters, dollars, and all major credit cards. You may park for up to 3 hours. Put your money into the meter, push the green button, and you will receive a ticket to place on your dashboard. You may move spaces in the mall area and take your paid time with you.
- Handicapped Parking
The State of New Jersey maintains that handicapped drivers can park in spaces designated as such, but must still pay the meter. Cape May City Council passed an amendment to the parking ordinance which states that anyone parking in a blue designated handicapped parking space, with proper handicapped signage, does not have to pay the meter.
However, if you park in a parking space which is not specifically designated for handicapped parking, even with proper signage, you are expected to pay the meter.
- Motorcycle Parking
There are a couple of free motorcycle parking spaces tucked along the Washington Street Mall. If these are occupied, motorcycles may be parked in traditional parking spaces and can simply feed the meter.
- Free Parking
During the summer months, free parking is offered in the Cape May Elementary School lot on Lafayette Street. Free shuttle trolleys run from the lot to locations in town on a regular basis. There are free parking spaces on many side streets throughout town. These typically fill up early in the morning, though if you like driving around, you can find occasional spaces open during the day.
- Flat Rate Parking
In the evenings, several businesses offer parking spaces for a flat fee (usually between $5 and $7). While this isn't necessarily more economical, it can be less of a headache. 410 Bank Street and Frescos validate parking for the adjacent lot (look for a sign).
- The Washington Commons Lot
Parking is available at Washington Commons (where Acme grocery store is located) for an hourly rate. The first 30 minutes is free, so this is a great option if you are making a quick trip to the grocery store.
- Parking at your accommodation
Due to the historic nature of the town, not all Cape May accommodations are able to offer on-site parking. Always ask your accommodation about parking. Many have parking permits for lots around Cape May. In some cases, you're on your own and must find parking for the duration of your stay. In this case, we recommend finding a free spot early in the morning, parking your car, and only moving it if absolutely necessary.
Parking an RV or camper
- Where can I park my RV/camper in Cape May?
We asked the Cape May City Police, and here is the city policy on parking an RV in Cape May:
- RVs are not allowed on Beach Avenue or near the Washington Street Mall
- RVs may be parked 2 or more blocks from the beach in a residential area as long as they are legally parked
- Absolutely no camping (sleeping, eating, watching TV) is permitted in a parked RV within Cape May City
- Can I park my RV/camper at the Walmart in Rio Grande?
No. Although this is permitted in other areas, a Middle Township ordinance forbids this.
- So...what should I do?
If you plan to be in Cape May for the weekend with your camper or RV, we recommend reserving a space at any one of the local campgrounds, which offer a wealth of vacation amenties for campers.