Parking, Los Angeles
If you dont own a Los Angeles Public Library card, you might want to get one, and its free. Why do you ask? You can park in the lot under the Maguire Gardens located at 524 S. Flower St. for only $1.00 flat rate.
When you are going around LA, you will encounter valet parking at many nightclubs, restaurants, and other events. Just drive up leave the keys in the car, take a ticket from the nice attendant and head inside. No parking hassles. Most of the time in the LA, it's well worth the hassles to just drop the car off. On some rare occasions, you can find parking nearby any way and there's no sense parking.
Generally valet parking is $4.00 to $8.00 plus you pay a tip of $2-5. I used to have a small unglamorous economy car that I rarely have waxed and polished and was usually covered in layers of dust, so I enjoyed driving up and joking with the valet guy, "Can you leave it up front and don't get any fingerprints on the car, I just waxed it."
If you are driving to Hollywood and you need a place to park your car. You can always try for some random side street. I hear that parking around there is pretty good if you can find it. Or, you can park at Hollywood and Highland, the mall that sits where those 2 streets intersect. If you get your parking validated, then it only costs $2 to park there, well worth it if you are going there in the evening/night because then you won't have to walk too far to get to the sights and it is safer. Also, if you happen to be going to the Hollywood Bowl for an event, a lot of people park at Hollywood and Highland and then take the shuttle over to the Hollywood Bowl. We bought something at Express to get our parking validated, the guy who works there told us that all the clothing retailers, will just give you validation, you don't need buy something. He said that the food places are more strict and will require you to buy something, but that's not the case with clothing stores. Whatever way you get your parking stub validated, $2 for parking is not bad at all.
If you happen to come visit L.A. and luckily happen to stumble across an empty parking spot. Your luck could turn sour if you think you can out smart the meter maids. Trust me these people are highly trained proffesionals that at times I swear they are hiding behind the bushes. Just feed the meters, and remember to always watch the posted signs. Some parking meters go all day and all night, some stop at 6. One more thing, you can park on a yellow zone only after 7.
Happy parkin' huntin'!!
Unfortunately, visiting a big city like LA means coping with the traffic, crowds, and hassles that big cities create. I recommend ALWAYS ADDING 20 MINUTES to any commute you are planning. Those extra 20 minutes will be helpful when looking for parking, either on a street or in a crowded structure. Also, always have quarters with you to feed the hungry street meters. The parking ticket patrol does not slack in LA and a few bucks in quarters is better than a $35 to $55 ticket.
Parking is not that difficult.
For instance: if you want to visit the Walk Of Fame and the footprints at the Mann's Chinese Theatre, just drive up north to Fountain and park your cars in one of the streets below Sunset. On weekdays (exept Mondays because of street cleaning) it's a two hour free stay.
Else: try the parking of the Rennaisance Hotel, which is next the Kodak Theatre.
I paid $5 for two and a half hour stay.