Dear PoPville – What’s Going on with the Visitor Parking Program Renewals


“Dear PoPville,

Do you have any further info on the new procedures for getting a visitor parking permit for the upcoming year?

I’ve done a bit of searching online and haven’t come up with anything…but Sept 30 is rapidly approaching.”

DDOT says they’ll soon be releasing lots more info soon but that they “will NOT be ticketed during the application phase of the program through October 30th.”

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  • “DDOT says they’ll soon be releasing lots more info soon but that they “will NOT be ticketed during the application phase of the program through October 30th.”

    Ugh, good luck fighting that ticket. I’m sure my girlfriend (she has VA plates) will get one on October 1st. Just our luck.

  • i’ve been trying to find out the same thing – i’m moving neighborhoods and have borrowed a car, and i’m trying to get a guest pass for it and for when i have visitors. so i don’t even have the old pass to have it expire.

  • I was just looking for more information, too – my parents are visiting Columbus Day weekend, and are trying to decide if they’re renting a car… Is it worth a bunch of us giving a call to DDOT?

  • so anyone can park in the resident-only spots in October and fight the ticket later? or you can use an expired pass that month? this is kind of frustrating–ddot’s had a while to figure this out.

    • ah

      No . . . I think the idea is that DDOT will treat the current visitor passes as not expiring until Oct. 30 (they probably don’t realize October has 31 days).

  • In the neighborhoods that already had passes, could you still got to the police station to get a guest pass? Because if you can still do that, all of the hand-wringing about getting a ticket seems unnecessary.

  • I thought the “Temporary Parking Pass” and “Visitor Passes” were different. Temporary passes would be someone’s parents in one weekend from out of town and the Visitor pass was for your girlfriend who frequently parks here from MD. I mean, they look different. The visitor pass, like the picture was something substantial and issued and mailed automatically for renewal. The temporary pass was a piece of paper you had to apply for in person (took 5 minutes) and slide onto your front dash board, it was only good for 2 weeks and was hand-written. Is this right?

  • I thought the laminated “Visitor Parking Pass” was supposed to cover visiting family, contractors doing work for a day, etc., etc. and that the significant another from VA/MD was supposed to apply for a ROSA exemption (or whatever the right term is).

    • The ROSA exemption doesn’t give you any parking rights, just lets the district know that this car they see all the time is owned by someone who legitimately doesn’t live in the district so isn’t expected to get DC tags. You would still need a visitor or guest pass to be able to park more than 2 hours in a residential zone.
      I think the laminated visitor pass is just a variant of the 2-week guest parking pass you could get at the police station, meant to be more convenient because you can just hand it to your contractor/nanny/house guest without having to go to the MPD. In the past it was only available in some zones (sub-zones?), sounds like when DMV figures themselves out it will be city-wide.

  • This is just ridiculous. Why don’t the just extend the existing program another year while they’re figuring things out? Now I’m going to have to convince my guests the expired pass will work, and then if they get a ticket I’ll have to help them fight it? DDOT really needs to get it together. They are an extremely disorganized agency.

  • Got this email from Muriel Bowser today:


    I’ve heard your concerns about the planned change to the Visitor Parking Permit (VPP) program administered by the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) and at Tuesday’s first DC Council session, I will take action.

    The DDOT proposal would require those who live on Residential Parking Permit blocks to apply for these permits, rather than automatically receive them in the mail. This is an unnecessary inconvenience for our residents. Also, the proposal will overburden street parking in already densely populated neighborhoods across the city. DDOT’s “one-size fits all” approach to VPP fails to recognize that different neighborhoods across the city have different needs. This is wrong.

    You have spoken loud and clear. I will introduce emergency legislation on Tuesday that will maintain the VPP program status quo.

    Clearly, we don’t need to fix something that isn’t broken.


    • Seems to me that automatically sending out these passes to people who don’t need or want them will be what “overburdens street parking.” The more of these passes in circulation, the more cars that can park on the street during Residential Parking hours, the more cars that will park on the street during residential parking hours. So this emergency legislation will have the exact OPPOSITE effect. I don’t see a problem with applying for these passes as long as the application is made available well before the prior pass expires.

  • I have never liked the idea of these permanent, laminated passes. They will eventually acquire a monetary value – and encourage the lurkers in the neighborhood to smash a window to steal them.

    I only use them for visitors who stay one or two nights. For longer, I trek to the police station and get a paper one.

    I never leave ANYTHING in my car when I park it on the street. I have a convertible, and once left the top down for half an hour right in front of my condo on a quiet Thursday afternoon. When I came back out, somebody had stolen my magnetic clip-on dark glasses, which one work on a VERY limited number of glasses — utterly valueless to the thief, but valuable to me.

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