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How long can you park your car in the street in Spain before risking a fine?

Parking rules are decided on a municipal level in Spain, meaning that the rules on how long you can leave your car parked before getting a fine varies.

How long can you park your car in the street in Spain before risking a fine?

How long can you leave your car parked on the street in Spain? The simple answer is it depends on where in the country you are.

In Spain, traffic regulations such as parking rules are delegated at a municipal level, so the rules are often different in every part of the country.

Generally speaking, however, in bigger cities you generally have less time to park, whereas around the rest of Spain in smaller towns and cities the maximum time allowed can vary from 10 days all the way up to 30.

The fines

The fine, however, is the same everywhere.

According to the DGT regulations, the fine for parking in (signposted) prohibited areas is €200, which can be halved if you pay it early, and does not add any points to your license. 

Similarly, leaving your car in the same parking space for too long, even if it’s a legally designated parking space, can also risk a €200 fine.

City by city

The rules on how long you can leave your car parked on the street depends on where it is.

To be sure of the rules and know exactly how long you can leave your car parked, you should check with the town hall (ayuntamiento) or local police, as they are the ones responsible for handing out fines (and possibly towing) your car.

But to help you out, The Local has outlined some of the rules in major cities below.


In Madrid, you can generally leave your car (legally) parked for five days. In fact, the city’s Mobility Ordinance bans parking in the same space for more than five working days.

It also expects you to keep on top of rule changes if you are going to leave your car: “the owner of the vehicle will have the obligation to make sure for himself, or by any other person or means, that his vehicle is not improperly parked as a result of any change in signage or traffic management.”

Valencia – In Valencia it depends on where in the city and the type (colour) of parking space you want to use.

Blue zone: a maximum of 2 hours.

Orange zone (non-residents): a maximum of 2 hours.

Orange zone (residents): a maximum of 7 days working days.


Barcelona operates a ‘green zone’ (zona verde) where all vehicles can park, but the maximum time you can leave your car depends on if you’re resident or have the appropriate approval.

Non-residents can park in the green area for a maximum of 1 or 2 hours, depending on where exactly you are, but you must get a ticket from a parking meter or pay through the Barcelona City Council app SMOU.

The hours for green zone parking are Monday to Friday or from Monday to Saturday, again depending on the neighbourhood, from 8am to 8pm. 

If you are a resident in a green parking zone, the maximum period of time you can park your car is 7 days, but always be sure to check the local signs in case there are any exceptions.


Blue zone (medium stay): a maximum of 5 hours.

Orange zone (non-residents): a maximum of 1 hour.

Orange zone (residents): a maximum of 5 days.

Las Palmas (Gran Canaria)

Blue zone: maximum of 2 hours.

Green zone (non-resident): Any user is allowed to park for a maximum of 1 hour.

Green zone (resident): Any user is allowed to park for a maximum of 1 month.

Palma de Mallorca

In Palma de Mallorca you can’t leave your car parked for more than 10 days, and Article 99 of the local council’s parking rules stipulates that after 15 days your car can be towed.

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For members


EXPLAINED: What are the rules for parking in Spain?

If you plan on buying or renting a car, haven’t managed to switch over your UK licence yet or you’ve just moved here and are unfamiliar with the rules, here’s everything you need to know about parking in Spain.

EXPLAINED: What are the rules for parking in Spain?

If you’re planning on driving in Spain, it’s important you familiarise yourself with all the rules here, not only when moving, but while parked too. Here’s what all the different coloured lines mean for parking on the street. 

White lines

These are the easiest and simple to understand in Spain and mean that you can park anywhere within the lines, at any time for free.

READ ALSO – Driving in Spain: What changes in 2023?

Blue lines

Parking within blue lines means they are designed for visitors and you must pay to leave your vehicle there. You can make your payment at the nearest parking meter.

Be aware that each region in Spain has different rules on how long you can park your car somewhere without incurring a fine, find out what they are here.

In general, the rules apply Monday to Friday from 9am to 9pm, and on Saturdays from 9am to 3pm. Sundays and holidays, there are no restrictions. The schedule can vary in summer though in popular destinations, so always look on the signs and the parking meter to find out.

Green and orange lines

Parking within green and orange lines is reserved for residents of the area who are registered to park in those particular zones.

To obtain a permit to park within the orange and green lines, you must contact your local ayuntamiento or town hall and present the necessary documents such as your padrón certificate, driving licence and evidence you own a vehicle.

It will also be necessary to make a payment to use this service. Once you’re registered you can use both the orange and green zones without any restrictions.

Visitors can also use green and orange parking zones, but there are restrictions in place and they must pay. The price of parking within green or orange lines is always higher than the price of parking within the blue lines and you are only allowed to park for a limited time. 

The duration can vary from region to region, but it’s typically only 2 hours before you’ll have to move your car. You must remember to pay straight away and leave a ticket in your window to prove you’ve done so.

You can park freely within white lines in Spain. Photo: Anatolii Maks / Pixabay

Is there a difference between the green lines and the orange ones?

No, there is no difference whatsoever, you can treat them exactly the same. It may depend on the city you’re in. For example, in Madrid, Barcelona and Seville you’ll find more green lines and in Valencia and Alicante you’ll find more orange ones.

Area exclusively for residents  

Some cities also have special exclusive resident zones, these areas are depicted by showing a red circle with an X through it and a light blue background. It will also have either orange or green lines on the street, as well as this sign saying ‘Zona exclusiva de residentes’ (Area exclusively for residents) or ‘área residents‘ (residents’ area).

READ ALSO: How Spain’s new low-emission zones will affect drivers

Loading and unloading zone

These zones are marked with yellow zigzag lines, as well as a dark blue circle outlined in red and with a diagonal red slash through the middle. It is forbidden to park at any time in these areas and they’re only for loading and unloading. The maximum time for this is around 30 minutes. The sign will also indicate any additional rules, but they typically apply from Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm.

Blue-Orange lines

A dotted blue and orange line indicates one of two situations. It’s either for those visiting a health centre or hospital, where you can park for a maximum of 4 hours or it’s a long-stay area near to a train station for example. You must pay for long-stay parking spots, but they will be at a reduced rate and you can leave your car for up to 12 hours.

Yellow line

A yellow line means that parking is prohibited at all times. They are usually placed in front of garages, the entrance to car parks and areas reserved for service vehicles such as police cars or ambulances.

No parking, except for the library bus. Photo: Daniel Capilla / WikiCommons

A red circle with a blue background and an X through the middle

This sign indicates that stopping and parking are prohibited in this area.

A red circle with a blue background and one diagonal line through the middle

This means that parking is prohibited but you can stop if absolutely necessary for less than 2 minutes when the driver is in the car.


If you leave the vehicle in the regulated parking area, but do not pay for parking, you will be fined, but if you park in an area labelled VADO, your car will be towed away, as well as having to pay.