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How to Pay for Parking

Learn how to pay for parking which is regulated in the Presidio seven days a week.

An Easier Way to Pay for Parking: Introducing Pay-by-Plate

We’re making it easier to pay for parking in the Presidio by introducing a Pay-by-Plate option like the one currently available in the City of San Francisco and elsewhere. Soon, everyone will be able to pay by entering their license plate number into the PayByPhone app or website, or by using on site physical parking meters. There is no increase to the cost of parking, and there will be no need to display a parking permit in the vehicle.

We’re introducing Pay-by-Plate gradually from summer 2024 through spring/summer 2025. Pay-by-Plate will be phased in first on the Main Post and at Crissy Field from August through October 2024 (see map). After that, we’ll expand to other areas in the park. When you park, look for signs indicating if the payment method is Pay-and-Display or Pay-by-Plate.

Parking is regulated in the Presidio seven days a week. The cost ranges between $2.50 to $3 per hour and between $12.50 to $15/day. ACE Parking issues parking violations to vehicles that have not purchased parking or have exceeded time limits.​ This map shows the prices of parking by area.

Parking fees support the operation and maintenance of the Presidio – thank you!

How to Use Pay-by-Plate

This map illustrates where we have implemented Pay-by-Plate and what areas still use Pay-and-Display.

Step 1: Park in a Pay-By-Plate Parking Space

Look carefully for signs and pay stations machines indicating that a curbside parking area or a parking lot requires payment. Parking signs that include the PaybyPhone logo accept mobile payments.

PayByPhone logo

Step 2: Check the Regulated Hours

Hours when parking payments are required are indicated on the signs. Parking is free outside of the indicated hours and on federal holidays.

Step 3: Purchase Parking

You can choose to pay using the parking pay stations or the PaybyPhone mobile app or website.

Pay stations are located within clear sight in regulated parking areas. To purchase parking, enter your license plate number and follow the instructions on the machine. If the machine is out of order, find another machine. If this is not possible or if you are having technical difficulties with a meter, contact the Presidio Parking Office at (415) 561-4265.

To use the machine, 1) enter your license plate number, 2) select the duration of parking, and 3) insert coins or debit/credit card.

To use PaybyPhone:

  1. Visit the PaybyPhone website or download the PaybyPhone app.
  2. Log in, register for an account, park as guest, or log in via Facebook. Select Park.
  3. Enter location number. Location numbers are posted on parking signage and at nearby pay stations.
  4. Enter duration.
  5. Confirm duration.
  6. You can add time to your parking session using the PaybyPhone website or app.

How to Use a Pay-and-Display Parking Machine

This map illustrates where we have implemented Pay-by-Plate and what areas still use Pay-and-Display. Follow the directions below for Pay-and-Display areas.

Image of a parking regulation sign in the Presidio, next to a Pay-and-Display parking machine.

Step 1: Park in a Pay-and-Display Parking Space

Look carefully for signs and Pay-and-Display machines indicating that a curbside parking area or a parking lot requires the purchase of a permit. Signs typically read “Pay to Park” or “Permit Parking Only.”

Step 2: Check the Regulated Hours

Hours when paid parking permits are required are indicated on the signs. Parking is free outside of the indicated hours and on federal holidays.

Step 3: Buy a Parking Permit

Pay-and-Display machines are located within clear sight in regulated parking areas. To purchase a permit, follow the instructions on the machine. If the machine is out of order, find another machine within the same zone. If this is not possible or if you are having technical difficulties with a meter, contact the Presidio Parking Office at (415) 561-4265.

To use the machine, 1) select the duration of parking, 2) insert coins or debit/credit card, and 3) retrieve the permit from the ticket dispensing cup on the lower front of the machine.

Step 4: Display the Parking Permit

Return to your vehicle and place the permit on the dashboard with the date and time visible through the windshield. For a motorcycle, place the permit in a visible location. Keep the receipt with you for your records. If you still have time left on your ticket when you return, you can use the permit elsewhere in the same numbered permit zone.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Look for signs that include the PaybyPhone logo and location number. Standard parking signage will include the PaybyPhone logo and large informational signage will also be placed in parking areas when Pay-by-Plate is implemented. Parking machines in pay-by-plate lots will prompt you to enter your license plate number. There is no printed permit in pay-by-plate lots.

Download the PayByPhone app on your smartphone. Enter the location number shown on parking signs. Add time for how long you want to park and confirm. You can add time to your parking session without returning to your car using your phone.

The pay station has a digital screen that displays instructions. Enter your license plate number and then add time to the desired duration. Then pay using your desired payment method. You do not need to return to your vehicle after completing the transaction.

You can either install the app or use their mobile-friendly website.

No, you can complete information as a guest for a single session. On the mobile-friendly website, click “Park as a guest”. Find and enter the location number (e.g. 415001) posted on the parking signage and pay stations. Enter your license plate number and the desired duration of your stay. Then enter your credit card information.

If you need to drive to the Presidio, we encourage you to park once, and then walk, bike, or use the free Presidio GO Shuttle to get elsewhere in the park. If you need to drive to another location in a different parking zone, you’ll need to pay at that location, as parking fees and time limits vary by location.

There is not a grace period. If you find you are staying in the park longer than expected, you can add to your parking session using the PayByPhone app or website or at the pay station.

Logos of the different partners of the Presidio including the National Park Service and Golden Gate Conservancy.
THANK YOU! Every dollar you spend in the Presidio – including for parking – helps to support and sustain the Presidio as a “forever park.”

Contact Transportation Services

If you have questions about transportation in the Presidio, contact us at transportation@presidiotrust.gov.

A sign reading Presidio Transit Center. Photo by Myleen Hollero.