Parallel parking. It’s the one part of a driving test that seems to stress out most new drivers, and some older drivers as well! However, you don’t have to worry about this part of your driver’s test with our steps. We’ve broken it down into four easy steps to make it seem less overwhelming, and we listed them below.
1. Claim Your Spot
Unless your driving instructor marks off a spot for you to parallel park, you want to keep an eye out for a good spot. Once you see one, claim it right away, so other drivers know what you’re going to do. Switch on your turn signal first. Next, you want to drive past your empty space and pull up alongside the vehicle that is in the front of your chosen spot. Your car should now be even with the parked car.
2. Back Up
Take a few moments to check your side mirror and rear-view mirror, and glance over your shoulder one more time. Once you’re completely sure that there is no cars or pedestrians in your way, put your car in reverse. You’re now ready to maneuver into the space. Turn your wheel sharply to the left without moving your car. Once it’s full left, slowly start to let off the brake. Keep going until your car is at a 45-degree angle. You’ll be able to see the car behind you in your car’s rear right window.
3. Turn the Wheel and Stop
When you reach the desired 45-degree angle, you’ll turn your steering wheel toward the right as far as you can. You want to continue backing up slowly, and keep your foot over the brake in case you have to stop quickly. Hit the brake when you get close to the vehicle in the back of the space. You don’t want to accidentally clip their bumper.
4. Straighten Your Car Up
You should now be in the spot with your car very close to the vehicle parked behind your space, and you should have several feet between your car and the car in front of your space. Put your gear in drive and slowly straighten out your tyres to centre yourself in your parking spot. Put your vehicle in park. You should be between six and 18 inches from the curb.
Practising these four steps a few times will make you a professional at parallel parking in no time! Just go slow, pay close attention to your surroundings and practice, practice practice!