Friday, August 06, 2010

culture shock

We don't own a car in Japan so I'm not too familiar with all the details but parking is definitely not free there.

Not even in the parking lot of our apartment complex. I think they charge US$120/month or something ridiculous like that.

When we lived in Hawaii the amount for the parking was included in our rent, but in Japan it is separate.

In fact, when you go to a department store or to shop in Japan, you need to get your ticket validated or else pay out your nose! (I think with validation you get a small discount, maybe even free, but I don't know for sure)

The parking structures in Japan are so tiny too because of lack of space. (definitely not big enough for most SUVs or the like)

I must say though, with all this space in Hawaii, many drivers lack manners and park in-between two stalls (not leaving a stall for someone else to park in) or don't bother to straighten out and end up hugging the left or right side of the stall (coming way too close to their neighbor).

We are lucky to have free parking in most places here in Hawaii, I think we should try to park nicely so that everyone can be happy.


Helen said...

I live out in the boonies in Japan and most of the places around here have free parking! (or at the worst, give 3 hours free parking and then you pay)

Our apartment building does make us pay for parking though :-( My DH pays for it as I don't drive. They don't make me pay for bicycle parking yet.

Jude said...

That photo captured the space in Hawaii so well! Parking must be one of the banes of modern existence :) - but - sigh - hard to live in a lot of American places without a car.

illahee said...

that's really high for parking at your apartment complex! ah, the joys of living in the city! when i was on my own in a small town, i had to pay about 3,000 yen a month!

plenty of free parking here in our part of the boonies, too. :D and parking is (always?) free at pachinko....

K and S said...

I think our bicycle parking is still free also Helen :)

So true Jude!

3000 a month is cheap Illahee :)

Take care everyone.

Rona Y said...

I remember when I lived in Kyoto (in the early '90's), one of my students lived downtown-ish with her family. She told me the rent for their parking space was Y60 000! I heard downtown Kyoto used to be the most expensive area for parking since they can't build those high-rise-style parking buildings there.

I guess the good thing about expensive parking is that it encourages people to use public transportation and not pollute the environment. :-)

K and S said...

For that price Rona, I would have to live in my car (in the parking space) :) You are right about using public transportation though.

Hope you are well. Take care.

Rowena said...

Park nicely and try to be more courteous drivers, in the sense that driving to "piss people off" is as bad or worse than people who simply drive like speed lunatics. On Kauai there are jokers who purposely drive slow on two-lane roads, keeping close to the dividing line so that the driver in the back can't see well enough to pass. Then they suddenly speed up when going on an incline. It's like they just cannot stand the idea of someone going ahead of them! Dingalings. I never had that problem on the Big Island (Hilo). They veer to the right-hand side of the lane when the know somebody wants to pass. As for the subject of parking, it's different everywhere you go in Italy, but we sure don't pay uber prices like in Japan!

KirkK said...

Hi Kat - We have problems with folks driving monster SUVs that they aren't able to park here too! And some folks with expensive cars think it's their right to take up two spaces.....

K and S said...

yikes that is bad on Kauai Rowena...I'm glad Italy doesn't have crazy parking fees!

That is interesting Kirk!

Take care you two.

Deb in Hawaii said...

Argh! I do not like those space hogs who take up two or more parking spaces! ;-)

K and S said...

Debinhawaii, they are evil aren't they??

Take care.

K said...

I agree- a little courtesy and safe driving goes a long way! There are a few repeat offenders at my office that park in two spots right in front of the building- and not that it really matters, but their cars aren't even that nice! (in the event they're doing that on purpose so other cars don't get close)

K and S said...

K, even if their cars were nice it still is wrong :(

take care.

Anonymous said...

I can appreciate your comments about parking in Japan and Hawaii. But let me tell you something -- being an expat from Honolulu, and now residing in Phoenix, AZ the parking lot are so much bigger in AZ as well as the size of the parking spaces themselves. When we go back to Honolulu, it is almost impossible to keep your door from at least touching the car in the next space, since the spaces are so narrow. And what's with all the backing-in parking in Honolulu? Why do Honolulu people feel that they have to park that way. Kinda crazy if you ask me.

K and S said...

Actually I really like to back into stalls Anon, it helps me get out of the parking space faster and is easier than having to back out of the stall :)

Take care.

Unknown said...

I can't stand SUVs and Full Size Vehicles that park in the Compact parking spaces. Those cars barely fit in normal stalls and they have the nerve to park in the compact stalls. Just for that, I always park my compact car super close to them (because that's the only way my compact car will fit in the stall with their over-sized vehicle next to it). Just to make them regret parking there. Sorry, that's my reaction to the bad manners they have. :)

K and S said...

I used to have a 2-door Honda civic Rick and once someone had parked so close to me I had to go in from the passenger side, only thing is that I was working my demo job for Lion and had all my stuff on the passenger side! Long story short, I think the guy's door was dented afterwards because I was so mad!!

Take care.