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View Full Version : Motorcycle etiquette - sharing a parking space?


Shoeless
04-20-2010, 12:30 PM
Now that the weather has warmed up, I have started riding my motorcycle to work. Today I look out the window and see that some other yahoo has parked his bike in the same parking spot that my bike is parked in. Part of me wants to go out and put a sticky note on his bike saying "Dude, get your own spot!" and part of me thinks it should be no big deal since my bike doesn't take up an entire spot anyway.

I've only been riding for about a year now, so I don't know what the expectations are for something like this. Am I expected to share a parking spot with some stranger if there is room? Is it OK to be pissed off that some other idiot thinks it's OK to park his bike right next to mine?

Scumpup
04-20-2010, 12:36 PM
Park your bike diagonally across the space.

TV time
04-20-2010, 12:40 PM
I ride and I have no problem with sharing a parking space. It opens up one for somebody else, and that makes sense to me.

Scumpup
04-20-2010, 12:45 PM
I have a problem with it. Not so much from other bikers, rather from the owners of teeny cars that will try to squeeze in with you.

Philster
04-20-2010, 12:47 PM
You shouldn't be pissed. Might be someone you can bump into and she might be the hottest thing you've ever seen. Might be the local police chief. Might be some guy who can get you a discount on Metzelers.

Chill out.

Machine Elf
04-20-2010, 01:06 PM
I'll share spots with riding buddies, but when traveling alone, I park in the middle of the parking space, with the back end of my bike even with the back ends of adjacent cars. I'd rather not have strangers parking right next to my bike.

I don't think it's worth a confrontation - belay the note - but next time I'd suggest parking so as to make it difficult/impossible for someone else to wedge their bike into the same parking stall.

Push You Down
04-20-2010, 01:25 PM
Meh. If I park in a spot I try to park facing out and to one side just so another ride can park next to me if need be. It's courtesy.

PatriotGrrrl
04-20-2010, 01:27 PM
When I used to ride it was considered normal to share a space.

Quercus
04-20-2010, 01:49 PM
I'll share spots with riding buddies, but when traveling alone, I park in the middle of the parking space, with the back end of my bike even with the back ends of adjacent cars. I'd rather not have strangers parking right next to my bike.

I don't think it's worth a confrontation - belay the note - but next time I'd suggest parking so as to make it difficult/impossible for someone else to wedge their bike into the same parking stall.

Why? Is there something I'm missing (I only ride bicycles) about motorcycles that makes it so you're hurt in some material way by sharing 'your' parking spot?

Surly Chick
04-20-2010, 01:58 PM
Seems normal to share.

FordTaurusSHO94
04-20-2010, 02:02 PM
I share if it's someone I'm riding with. I wouldn't try to share a spot with a random person and I wouldn't want them to do the same with me. It's a personal space issue.

Edward The Head
04-20-2010, 02:02 PM
Are you paying for the spot? If so then I would hope that the other person has at least chipped in. Otherwise what happens if you leave and the other person needs to put money in or gets a ticket?

If you're not paying I don't see a big deal really. But if you have a nice bike and are afraid someone's going to scratch it then park down the middle, though most bikers aren't going to touch your bike at all.

Belrix
04-20-2010, 02:44 PM
If I'm parking amongst cars I park in the center and, like Joe Frickin Friday, with my tail even with the backs of the cars. I think this gives me the most visibility and the least likelihood of having my bike squashed by an inattentive car parker.

My bike is big enough that nobody is going to squeeze in next to me if I'm in the center.

If I'm among bikes, I park with enough room for another to come alongside.

Wanna deal with whether it's better to park on the yellow hashed lines at the end of a row? One driver in my office says "more spaces for me" and the other says "get out in the spaces like all the other vehicles".

control-z
04-20-2010, 02:47 PM
A sport bike might be able to fit 2 to a spot, but cruisers with their windshields, saddlebags, and crash bars take up quite a bit of room. I usually park in the middle of a spot anyway to keep from getting door dinged.

Johnny L.A.
04-20-2010, 02:48 PM
I always park my bike so that another rider can park his next to mine. It never occurred to me to use a whole space.

MeanOldLady
04-20-2010, 02:49 PM
I'm sorry, what's the problem again? Two bikes fit into one spot, but he's not supposed to park his near yours because you're unnerved by the proximity? Why waste another whole space?

Muffin
04-20-2010, 02:52 PM
Why? Is there something I'm missing (I only ride bicycles) about motorcycles that makes it so you're hurt in some material way by sharing 'your' parking spot?As with other livestock, overcrowding leads to outbreaks of cooties.

Telcontar
04-20-2010, 02:53 PM
My office recently set aside two spaces for motorcycles, cutting each in half so there were a total of 4 slots. Seems to be working out well.

Snickers
04-20-2010, 03:09 PM
Telcontar, I've seen this too at a restaurant that's near work. They've divided what looks like it used to be 4 spaces into 8 for motorcycles. I think it's a pretty keen idea, even though I'm not a biker.

Machine Elf
04-20-2010, 03:10 PM
Why? Is there something I'm missing (I only ride bicycles) about motorcycles that makes it so you're hurt in some material way by sharing 'your' parking spot?

Not hurt, but exposed to elevated risk - because someone was too lazy to park in the open stall twenty yards away. Motorcyclists come in all levels of skill, courtesy, and integrity. If a dopy/novice biker tries to squeeze in next to my bike, he may accidentally kick my bike while dismounting his, or his bike may fall over into mine. If your bicycle gets kicked, or someone else's bike falls into it, or it falls over, you're not likely to receive any/much damage. But if someone drags a grit-loaded boot across a painted sidecase or a fuel tank - or if a motorcycle falls over and knocks over another motorcycle, maybe even knocks your motorcycle into the car in the next stall - thousands of dollars in damage can happen very quickly. If the culprit has any integrity he'll stick around and 'fess up, or leave a name/number where it can be found. But maybe he doesn't, and you come back to find your $20K touring machine tipped over, and the owner of the car it fell against is yelling at you. No matter what, you've got a big pain in the ass on your hands. No thanks.

Thus, I'd rather have only people I know park in the same stall with my bike. I hang out with skilled riders who are also upstanding people; accidents/mistakes will still happen from time to time, but when they do, I know the responsible party will step up.

If you really park far enough over to one side, some idiot will try to wedge his Smart Car in next to your bike.

ducati
04-20-2010, 03:35 PM
If I'm riding with a friend, I share the space.

If I know there will be a lot of bikes coming (motorcycle show, rally) I leave a space.

If I'm out riding, and parking is normal (grocery store vs. game 6 of the world series) I park my bike in the middle, front out for a fast and safe getaway. There, it seems a personal space issue, and I don't want some clumsy ijit scraping in next to my nice bike.

Then again, half the time I'll probably park on the sidewalk near the door.
All the time if I'm on a scooter.

Fire lane if I'm on the Ural. I've often found mommy letting little Billy sit on/in the bike when I return to the parking lot.

I give kids (and grown-ups) rides all the time, and spend hours explaining the bike to folks, but I'll blow a small gasket when women (sorry, it's always women) just throw their spawn on my bike like it's the little pony ride in front of K-Mart without asking.

I don't need Little Ricky pressing up against the toasty mufflers and taking off like Richard Pyor because he's still in his chinese Sure-FlameŽ jammies.

Fear the Turtle
04-20-2010, 04:27 PM
I always park to one side to allow room for another bike.

I've never seen anyone accidentally kick over a $20K touring bike.

Machine Elf
04-20-2010, 04:53 PM
I've never seen anyone accidentally kick over a $20K touring bike.

Indeed, not likely to be kicked over, but scratching it up with an errant boot isn't hard.

The tipover happens when Tall, Dark, & Stupid's bike falls over into yours. Maybe he didn't put his sidestand down all the way, or maybe he dumped the bike as he was coming to a stop.

Sorry, I don't know you, there's lots of spaces over yonder; go park over there.

Lanzy
04-20-2010, 05:25 PM
I don't share, not a lane not a parking space.

Shoeless
04-20-2010, 05:27 PM
My office recently set aside two spaces for motorcycles, cutting each in half so there were a total of 4 slots. Seems to be working out well.

Y'know, they're in the middle of repaving and repainting the parking lots at work. Maybe I should ask HR/Facilities if they would consider doing something like this.

My bike's not really big, it's a small cruiser, so it doesn't take up anywhere close to a full spot. It just surprised me when I looked out and saw another bike parked behind my bike. And from the angle I was looking at it, he looked like he parked it awfully close to mine, although when I went to leave for lunch there was more room between us than I thought.

If this is normal then no big deal, I guess - it just took me by surprise, and seemed unnecessary since there were plenty of other open spaces in the lot (but mine was in front).

GusNSpot
04-20-2010, 09:38 PM
In your company parking lot, you should got out and give the inconsiderate fool good tongue lashing (just hope it is not someone who is higher up the food chain) . Out in the rest of thew world, might wanna get a look at the other guy before you get all self righteous.... Or not, do what you are big nuff to do.

Nobody knew anyone else. No damage done.

Nobody knew anyone else. No damage done. (http://lh5.ggpht.com/_dhRsv7QUKHI/S8p-ZIiqLFI/AAAAAAAAXKk/yqxxFZ3nbCM/s800/SPITO075.jpg)

The Surb
04-20-2010, 10:12 PM
Gus, is that your Glide?

I don't see what the big deal is. I share a spot whenever I can. No problems so far and I have a pretty big bike.

I've yet to see someone who can't mount a motorcycle without scratching every bike near them. (well ok, taverns are excluded)

Now that we have the little stuff out of the way, let's sit down and discuss loud pipes on bikes :D.

FordTaurusSHO94
04-21-2010, 12:18 AM
Some people consider it wasting a spot by parking one motorcycle in a parking spot, but it's no different than one person parking a car in a spot. Anyways, I usually park in odd places like the yellow or white stripes at the end of rows or other strange spots. When I do that, anyone is free to park another bike around me.

kopek
04-21-2010, 02:00 AM
Why? Is there something I'm missing (I only ride bicycles) about motorcycles that makes it so you're hurt in some material way by sharing 'your' parking spot?

It depends. I had a stranger on a dresser park next to my Sportie; close. So close that once I got on I couldn't pull my bike upright without hitting his or getting my bars and mirrors tangled in his. I had to slide it off the kickstand and pull it back supporting more weight in my arms that I was really happy with. (and I would NEVER straddle someone else's seat and shift his/hers bike for them - stuff like that can get ugly) I've also had the case now and then when someone on another bike would crowd me but not too badly - until that car decided to pull in beside us hugging the line and making things tough. Scratched paint, chipped mirrors, dropping your bike on your own foot trying not to do one of the first two to some stranger; the costs add up over a course of years.

Remember we're talking a few hundred to many hundred pounds more than your bike. Given an tight parking situation we can't easily pick it up and shift it.

missred
04-21-2010, 04:04 AM
My office recently set aside two spaces for motorcycles, cutting each in half so there were a total of 4 slots. Seems to be working out well.

My workplace has done this with six slots. Given that it's bike weather about nine months of the year here and our parking lot is often overcrowded, it makes sense.

elfkin477
04-21-2010, 06:50 AM
Some people consider it wasting a spot by parking one motorcycle in a parking spot, but it's no different than one person parking a car in a spot. Except if I parked my compact car in a large parking space intended for an SUV or a extended cab pickup truck, there'd be a lot of people who (rightly) thought that was wasting a space too.

I like the idea of cutting a couple of parking spaces in two for bikes, and have seen it before - I'm pretty sure that's how the bike spaces at Old Orchard began life. Where I work people do tend to share spots with another bike unless it's a rather large one which understandably needs the room.

Quartz
04-21-2010, 07:27 AM
Why aren't you putting your bike in one of the dedicated bike parking bays?

Turek
04-21-2010, 08:34 AM
Wanna deal with whether it's better to park on the yellow hashed lines at the end of a row? One driver in my office says "more spaces for me" and the other says "get out in the spaces like all the other vehicles".

Ok, I will. (http://boards.academicpursuits.us/sdmb/showthread.php?p=12366426)

palacheck
04-21-2010, 08:46 AM
Some of the old school bikers around here seem to see it as some sort of show of solidarity. It's just another way to discourage young punks from screwing with the bikes; sort of like slapping a Bandido sticker on the back.

Neverender
04-21-2010, 10:04 AM
If the space is adjacent to a wall, and your bike ends up closest to the wall, and the other bike is between yours and the 'road' of the parking lot, I could see it being a good thing, if someone blindly pulls in and hits the other bike first it may stop them plowing into yours. Just a thought, might not be applicable.

I wouldn't be too bothered, unless I was paying for the spot or it inconvenienced me somewhat, such as having to push my bike around theirs before mounting - I could see this being a problem if you ride a big or heavy bike. Otherwise it makes no sense two spots being taken up when you can get away with one.

Johnny L.A.
04-21-2010, 10:10 AM
Why aren't you putting your bike in one of the dedicated bike parking bays?

Most places don't have dedicated motorcycle parking.

Quartz
04-21-2010, 11:19 AM
Most places don't have dedicated motorcycle parking.

Interesting. It's pretty normal - but not omnipresent - in the U.K.

Essured
04-21-2010, 11:52 PM
Always share. Though, I get annoyed if they don't follow the unwritten etiquette and cause me inconvenience (i.e, huge cruiser essentially parks you in, or parks so that you can't stand your bike up).
I find that most of the time, cruisers tend to get their own spaces (or share with the group if they're in a group) while sports bikes seem happy to share with strangers. Probably because the average cruiser takes up more room than the average sports bike


It doesn't happen often though - I rarely park my bike in a parking spot anyway

Muffin
04-22-2010, 05:07 AM
Most places don't have dedicated motorcycle parking.And the places that do receive a lot of complaints from Hummer drivers that the parking stall lines are too close together when they park in them. :D

Zulema
04-22-2010, 08:09 AM
It's rude if there's plenty of open spaces. Like someone mentioned above if the second rider parks too close the first rider could get trapped by not being able to stand their motorcycle up. When you're riding with someone you're arriving and leaving at the same time so then you always share.

In a regular size space if you park over to the left enough to make sure you don't get trapped your motorcycle top ends up too close to the line.

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