CommentaryAug 23rd, 2022

The Best Parking Lot Strategy


I'll be in trouble with my wife if she finds out I told you this. 

Do you have a strategy for getting the best space in the parking deck?

From my personal observations, most folks tend to drive onto the lower decks and try to (maybe) find that perfect space as close to the door/stairway as possible. They will circle and circle (like airplanes waiting to land) trying to get the best space. It takes a while to find, they end up disappointed, and proceed to the next level up. Then, they do it again. (Rince, wash, repeat.)

Perhaps, just maybe, there’s a better way? Consider this.

Instead of trying to cram your way into the last space on Level 2, why not just drive higher to the top or the second to the top level?  

  1. You can get there quickly.
  2. You can get yourself pretty close to your preferred entrance door. (Some alleged “pros” have told me you never want to park on the top deck because of the blazing sun on your vehicle and potential to get wet if it rains.) Ha!  I’ll buy the rain argument, but unless you’ve spent as much time as I do at airports, I am going to waive you off the flight pattern with that sun related philosophy. 
  3. The added driving, elevator, or stair time is minimal compared to circling the lot like a shark. 
  4. It’s less stressful, you’re done, and on to your next task. 


Sometimes, you just need a different perspective. Same task, same outcome, better process. 

 Let’s discuss the insurance renewal at your dealership.

Does this sound familiar: Once a year, your insurance agent comes to visit and to deliver this year’s bad news. Your premium is going up on every single policy. Without question, they arrive in your office one (1) week ahead of your renewal so there isn’t any time to maneuver or negotiate.

You’re irritated.

“This isn’t right,” you say to yourself.

Then, you swallow hard and tell him to renew everything and (almost) throw him out of your office – banished for another year.

Sound familiar?

 Here’s a different perspective and a better way.

First, spread your insurance renewals throughout the year.  Don’t have all of them renew at once.

Second, require your agent to bring you the quotes thirty (30) days ahead of the renewal date. In the case of the garage renewal, because of its complexity, I suggest ninety (90) days.

 This accomplishes multiple things:

  1. You’ve created an opportunity to review and renew each policy calmly, carefully, and without stress.  
  2. You’ve given yourself the option of having enough time to review the actual policy forms. This allows you to consider where your vulnerabilities lie and determine if there are ways for you to cover these through the insurance policies.
  3. By requiring your agent to give you the new numbers ahead of time, you’ve opened up the option of your negotiating with the insurance company about either (1) the policy form itself or (2) the premium.
  4. You will be less aggravated.
  5. For certain, you will be able to exercise control over your policies. Maybe you will send the agent to get prices from another carrier? Maybe you will ask the carrier to come visit you or you go to their offices to talk about the policy and renewal? Perhaps, you can discuss how claims are handled and how that effects your renewal premium?

 In short, you gain control.

I would proffer that’s a better way.

By the way, if I find our favorite parking spot on Level 7 of the Norfolk, Virginia airport parking lot blocked, I’m going to be in trouble with my wife. Please be gentle with me!   

A dealership franchise owner for thirty years, Tom is now the Lead Consultant & Founder of Better Vantage Point, providing Dealer Dispute, Compliance and Risk Mitigation Solutions.

Tom also spearheads Tuck The Octopus which helps dealerships proactively manage governance, risk and compliance which has a direct impact on the customer experience.

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