Nashua to launch PayByPhone parking

Downloadable phone app looks to simplify parking in downtown

Staff photo by Casey Junkins Downtown Nashua parking meters will soon allow drivers the option of paying via their phones with a new PayByPhone app.

NASHUA – It is an all too familiar scenario downtown: you park your car, dig out your last few quarters to pay the meter, go get lunch and come out to find that it wasn’t enough, and there’s a little yellow sleeve on your windshield.

Not a golden ticket, but a parking ticket.

The inconvenience of parking downtown has been one of Nashua residents’ most frequent complaints about the city, according Economic Development Department Downtown Specialist James Vayo.

On Monday, Nashua officials will begin a partnership with PayByPhone, an app that will allow drivers to pay for parking “without the hassle of looking for change or walking back and forth to a pay station,” they said said via press release.

PayByPhone is a mobile payment company that will allow users to pay, as the name suggests, by phone, or online at www.paybyphone.com.

“It’s an important step toward modernizing the services in the city of Nashua,” Vayo said, adding that it will help give the Gate City a competitive edge over other downtowns.

Starting on Main Street, small decals with a four-digit number will be affixed to the meters at all of the roughly 900 spots, moving outward to the other parking zones during the coming days and weeks. The parking garages (the first level metered spots only) and the library will be the last locations to get decals.

After downloading the app, users will enter their license plate number, car make and model and credit card information. Once the four-digit code and the desired amount of time are entered, the transaction is complete.

Vayo said for parking enforcers policing the area, if a meter indicates time has expired for a particular space, they will be able to enter the license plate information to check for sure.

The service also offers reminders when time is almost up, as well as the option to add more time.

However, PayByPhone may not be ideal for those who only intend to park for a few minutes, as the services charges an additional 32 cents per transaction.

Paying with quarters at the meters or by card at the kiosks will still be available.

Eventually, the service will also offer maps, in addition to the option for businesses to offer valet parking (essentially reimbursing patrons for parking), but those features are still in the works, Vayo said.

The soon-to-be-realized project has been in the works since April.

“We want Nashua’s downtown to offer all the amenities of a first-class 21st century destination,” he said.

Hannah LaClaire can be reached at 594-1232 or hlaclaire@nashuatelegraph.com.