CITY drivers have forked out almost £3 million in permits for the option to park by their own home – the most expensive council permits in Scotland.
Figures show 28,526 city residents collectively forked out the huge sum, with an average price of £243.25 compared to a national average of £77.
Edinburgh drivers, who are also facing premium price hikes at pay and display streets across the city, are increasingly feeling the squeeze of car ownership.
The new research from comparethemarket.com indicates nearly one in five motorists are now more likely than ever to sell their cars due to rising costs.
Edinburgh residents are paying the most for the privilege of parking outside their own home, with an annual parking permit in that area costing an average of £243.25
In certain areas of the city, the cost of a permit is £499 for a household’s first car and £630 for a second vehicle.
And with an agreed budget increase of 5.3 per cent for parking permits, residents’ parking costs continue to soar.
The increases start at 3.1 per cent and depend on the resident’s zone and vehicle engine size.
Nationwide analysis reveals that the average parking permit costs £77 a year for the first permit.
Edinburgh topped the list of expensive parking permits, with Glasgow and Dundee costing just £150 and £79 on average respectively.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, those living in Aberdeen and Fife benefit from the cheapest parking permits, costing just £50 per year.
Edinburgh council raked in the most cash from parking permits in 2017 where 28,526 residents collectively forked out over £2,773,769 a year to park by their own home.
Dan Hutson, head of motor at comparethemarket.com said: “When moving into a new home, residents up and down the country are unknowingly entering a parking permit lottery.
“While many of us take for granted the ability to park outside our home without having to worry about a permit, our research shows that’s not the case for every city.
“While there are people who benefit from not having to pay for a permit, it’s clear from our research that many are having to contribute.
“Parking permits may not always be at the front of your mind when you’re first getting on the road or moving home, so it can often be a fee which is overlooked and unexpected.
“Our research shows that one in five – 19 per cent – of motorists are now more likely than ever to sell their cars due to rising costs.”
Transport convener Councillor Lesley Macinnes said all income from parking was reinvested in road maintenance and transport infrastructure.
Meanwhile Edinburgh has been named in the top five worst places for traffic jams in the UK behind London, Manchester, Aberdeen and Birmingham.
Drivers here can expect to spend 31 hours a year stuck in traffic, according to GoCompare.
Transport and Environment Convener, Councillor Lesley Macinnes, said: “As Edinburgh’s population continues to grow, pressure on parking for visitors and residents alike is increasing too. Our city centre is unique in that it is both a home for many thousands of people, a place of work for commuters from across the country and a major tourist destination, so it’s important that we properly balance the need for parking spaces.
“Permits are necessary to enable residents’ parking close to home on what can be extremely busy, in-demand streets, though we also encourage sustainability through the pricing structure, which charges less for cars with lower emissions, but has higher charges for more polluting vehicles or for permits for second vehicles.
“All income accrued from is reinvested in transport maintenance and infrastructure, improving the condition of our roads as well as enhancing the streetscape for cycling and walking. This complements our excellent public transport system, which allows more choice in whether to own a car in Edinburgh.”