Use your phone to pay for downtown parking and it can cost only pennies - InfoNews

Current Conditions


Use your phone to pay for downtown parking and it can cost only pennies

Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
July 14, 2019 - 7:00 AM

KELOWNA - Recent upgrades to the PayByPhone app currently allows Kelowna residents to pay only pennies to park downtown.

But it may not last.

“PayByPhone came out with a new feature, which is called Pay Until,” Dave Duncan, the city’s parking services manager told “You can put in the time you actually want to park until and it would charge you for that time. When they came up with that new feature, it kind of contradicted the minimum we have set. We’re working with them to, hopefully, offer shorter periods and analyze our true costs for each transaction.”

Prior to the change, the minimum charge for on-street parking either through the phone app or a pay station, was one hour for $1.25.

While being interviewed by, Duncan punched in a time a few minutes later on his phone. It said he would be charged eight cents for about five minutes.

The reality is, however, the city loses money on such short term transactions.

The company supplying the phone app charges a transaction fee. Duncan would not say what that fee is currently but it used to be 25 cents and was added onto the cost when using the app. That meant, at that time, using a pay station would cost $1 for an hour but paying by phone would cost $1.25.

The city decided to absorb the transaction fee so the cost was the same either way.

In addition, credit card companies charge a flat rate of about 10 cents per transaction plus a percentage of the charge.

That means, the minimum cost to the city is about 35 cents.

Rather than tell PayByPhone to shut off the app in Kelowna, Duncan is trying to work out a solution so drivers can pay for shorter stays without the city losing money.

The app now also has a map feature so people parking don’t have to find a number on a sign or pay station to input their location, just click on the map.

It also allows people to add time without having to go back to their vehicle.

Since the system is licence plate based, drivers can relocate to other parking spaces to use up all the time they have paid for, Duncan said.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Rob Munro or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2019
InfoTel News Ltd

  • Popular vernon News
  • Comments
  • iN VIDEO: Cyclists wipe out on Highway 97
    PENTICTON - Cyclists had a close call on the highway this morning as the 2019 Prospera Granfondo Axel Merckx Okanagan race got underway. The annual competition started at Gyro Park in P
  • Semi fire on Coquihalla south of Kamloops
    KAMLOOPS - A semi-truck fire is currently raging on the Coquihalla Highway south of Kamloops. Photos show a semi-truck at the Coquillhalla Highway south of Kamloops on July 13. According to
  • Mother sues Kelowna RCMP seeking investigation into her sons' deaths
    KELOWNA - The mother of two teens who died by suicide is taking the Kelowna RCMP to court to answer lingering questions. Annette Toro is petitioning the courts to order the RCMP, as well as
  • TRENDING NOW: Fish swallows shark whole
    %%NoDefaultImage%% Sharks might be near the top of the food chain, but they're not invicible. Sometimes all it takes to brings down Jaws is a fish with a big mouth and a lot of ambition.
  • Hedley frontman Jacob Hoggard to stand trial in sex assault case
    TORONTO - Jacob Hoggard, the frontman for the Canadian rock band Hedley, will stand trial on three sex-related charges involving a woman and a teenager, a judge ruled Friday. Ontario Court J
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile