Car insurance

Uncovered: The parent and child parking problem

We found that 1 in 3 people using parent and child parking spaces weren't eligible to do so. We discovered the reasons why people misuse these bays. And which supermarkets have the worst offenders.

What percentage of people misuse parent and child parking bays in your region?

We looked at the the percentage of people that incorrectly parked in parent and child parking bays across Britain. See how your region compares.

  • 60%
    North East
  • 57%
    East of England
  • 55%
    Scotland
  • 40%
    Yorkshire
  • 31%
    East Midlands
  • 28%
    South East
  • 26%
    Wales
  • 23%
    West Midlands
  • 8%
    North West
  • 8%
    South West
North East North-West Yorkshire East-Midlands West-Midlands East-Anglia London South-East South-West Wales

Top reasons for misusing parent and child parking bays

We asked drivers their reasons for misusing parent and child parking bays.

  • 'There were plenty of parent and child spaces available'
  • 'I couldn't find another space'
  • 'It was late at night and I didn't think there could be any parents with children around'
  • 'I was only using the space for a few minutes'

Supermarkets with the worst offenders

Although supermarkets clearly mark their parent and child parking bays, people still msiuse them. We uncovered which supermarkets had the worst offenders for poor parking.

What's the law on parent and child parking spaces?

There's no parent and child parking spaces law in the UK. But you could receive a Parking Charge Notice for misusing them. Drivers think that:

  • Parent and child parking will always be abused unless a law is passed to do otherwise (35%)
  • All private car parks should issue fines to drivers who misuse a parent/child parking space (24%)

Who's most likely misuse parent and child parking bays?

Parent with children under 12 can use parent and child parking bays. But that doesn't stop other people misusing them.

  • Almost 1 in 10 (9%) of people have parked in a parent/child parking space despite not having a child with them.
  • 18-24 year olds (17%) were most likely to use a parent/child parking bay when they didn't have a child with them.

What can you do to help?

Have you experienced people misusing parent and child parking bays in your local supermarket? Use our tool to locate the store and let them know.

If you're still confused about the rules on parent and child parking bays, our guide will explain the dos and don'ts.

Read our guide
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Methodology

Figures obtained by research agency, PCP, on behalf of Confused.com. PCP carried out spot checks across more than 650 supermarkets across England, Wales and Scotland (excluding London). Incorrect usage refers to drivers who have parked in a parent and child parking space and not leaving the car/entering the store with a child.

Additional research figures taken from omnibus research carried out by One Poll on behalf of Confused.com. This was an online poll of 2,000 UK adults. The research was conducted between 16 June and 21 June 2022.

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Close

Methodology

Figures obtained by research agency, PCP, on behalf of Confused.com. PCP carried out spot checks across more than 650 supermarkets across England, Wales and Scotland (excluding London). Incorrect usage refers to drivers who have parked in a parent and child parking space and not leaving the car/entering the store with a child.

Additional research figures taken from omnibus research carried out by One Poll on behalf of Confused.com. This was an online poll of 2,000 UK adults. The research was conducted between 16 June and 21 June 2022.

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