The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) announced Jan. 7 that all SFMTA parking meters now accept payment by phone. Customers can pay for parking at city meters by phone, receive a reminder message when time is almost up, add time without returning to the meter (subject to time limit restrictions), and receive a receipt via email.
“We are proud to provide additional convenience for our parking customers,” said Tom Nolan, chairman of the SFMTA Board of Directors. "We want to make parking as simple as possible, which furthers our goal of developing smarter parking solutions and more convenient payment and information options."
“The SFMTA is committed to improving parking throughout the city,” said Ed Reiskin, SFMTA director of transportation. “PayByPhone is one more tool to help improve the parking experience in San Francisco by making it easier to feed the meter and avoid citations.”
With PayByPhone, customers can pay for metered parking using their credit card at any type of meter, including single space meters, multi-space meters, motorcycle meters and SFpark meters. Displays on the meters themselves don’t change after the phone transaction is complete, however parking control officers see that payments were made on their wireless handheld devices and will not cite vehicles at those meters.
Instructions can be found on a PayByPhone decal affixed to the side of the meter, and customers can call from any type of phone. To access PayByPhone, customers should call 866-490-7275 or download the app online at: www.paybyphone.com. Once a customer registers for the service by phone or online, they can enter the meter location number that is on the meter’s decal. Customers then enter the desired length of time to add to the meter.
The length of parking time is limited to the time restrictions for that specific meter. The PayByPhone option is provided at no cost to the City, so the service provider adds a 45 cent fee per meter transaction to cover all costs.
Customers with smartphones that have Near Field Communications (NFC) payment capability can “tap” the meter to initiate streamlined payment. With about 29,000 meters throughout the city, this NFC deployment becomes one of the largest single NFC deployments in the United States.
The 1,000 meters near and along The Embarcadero that fall under the Port of San Francisco jurisdiction do not have PayByPhone yet. The SFMTA and the Port are currently assessing the feasibility of bringing PayByPhone to these meters.