Parking your car in Melbourne CBD can be both hard work and expensive. Parking spaces are in high demand, and the CBD is full of people commuting to and from work each day. Oh, and then there are the tourists!

The best way to get into the Melbourne CBD is with public transport. Trains are reliable and regular, with Spencer St Station and Flinders Street Station centrally located. Best of all, the city tram is free once you’ve got into the CBD itself.

If you really do need to drive into the Melbourne CBD, you need to have a plan on where to park your car. Keep reading for our guide on where to park in Melbourne City.

The Melbourne City skyline at sunset from a skyscraper, looking down on the streets of Melbourne, where is hard to find parking in Melbourne

Cheap parking Melbourne CBD: The District Docklands East & West Car Parks

The District Docklands East and West Car Parks offer cheaper rates than most car parks in the city. It’s the perfect spot if you’re heading to Etihad Stadium, or having dinner in the Docklands precinct.

If you’re heading into the CBD, you can park here and catch a free tram from Docklands Drive. The trams leave every four minutes. Parking rates are as follows:

  • 0-1 hours: $5.00
  • 1-2 hours: $10.00
  • 2-3 hours: $15.00
  • 3-4 hours: $20.00
  • 4-5 hours: $25.00
  • 5-6 hours: $30.00
  • 6+ hours: $40.00
  • Early bird pricing: $10.00 if you enter before 10am and leave before 3pm

If you spend $20 or more in one transaction at any of The District Docklands store you can validate your parking ticket for up to 2 hours free parking, valid between the hours of 10am and 10pm. Monthly packages and pre-paid packages are also available by arrangement. 

A streetscape in Melbourne City, where trams and pedestrians are avoiding figuring out where to park in Melbourne by leaving cars at home

Cheap(er) parking Melbourne CBD: Council House car park

The City of Melbourne operates the Council House car park in the central CBD area. This car park is managed by GreenCo Parking and provides short-term parking rates which are slightly lower than regular commercial rates.

The car park has three separate entries: 200 Little Collins St, Russell Place, and Royal Lane. Rates are as follows:

  • Less than 30 minutes: $4
  • 0.5 to 1 hours: $8
  • 1 to 1.5 hours: $10
  • 1.5 to 2 hours: $13
  • 2 to 2.5 hours: $16
  • 2.5 to 3 hours: $25
  • 3 to 3.5 hours: $35
  • 3.5 to 4 hours: $45
  • 4 to 4.5 hours: $55
  • 4.5 to 5 hours: $55

Weekend daily flat rate (2+ hours): $12.

Night rate, Monday to Sunday (enter after 6pm, exit before 6am): $10.

A Melbourne city lanway with people looking at the graffiti on the walls - extra pedestrians in the CBD helps reduce the need for parking in Melbourne

Street parking Melbourne CBD

While street parking is an option in Melbourne CBD, you will need to pay for it, and it’s not easy to come by.

Most parking bays in Melbourne CBD have a limit of one-hour during the day. After 6.30pm, many parking bays have a two-hour limit. Parking restrictions in the CBD end at 8.30pm.

The hourly rate for street parking is typically around $5.50.

A bike propped up against a wall in a Melbourne laneway, with graffiti on the walls - parking in Melbourne is made easier when locals ride more than drive

Le Garage: Maybe cheap Melbourne parking, or maybe not

Located in the east end of the CBD, Le Garage offers 24-hour parking in an amazing location. Le Garage is bordered by Flinders Street, Exhibition Street, Flinders Lane, and Russell Street.

The downside? During the day, Le Garage is mega expensive. But early bird, weekend, and night parking is pretty cheap!

You need to pre-book online. You’ll then get a code to enter at the boom gates. The online discounted rates are as follows:

  • 0-0.5 hours: n/a
  • 0.5-1 hours: $21
  • 1-2 hours: $42
  • 2-3 hours: $63
  • 3+ hours: $72

Early bird (enter between 5.30am – 7.00am and exit before midnight): $16

Weekend: $10

Mon-Thurs nights (enter after 4pm): $8

Friday night (Enter after 4pm): $10

Flinders street station in Melbourne city, with cars drive past on the road, where there is no Melbourne Parking available

Mid City Car Park

Mid City Car Park at 179 Little Bourke Street is the perfect spot if you’re headed to Chinatown or the businesses surrounding that area. Parking fees are as follows:

  • 0-0.5 hours: $5
  • 0.5-1 hours: $19
  • 1-2 hours: $39
  • 2+ hours: $49 max

Entry after 4pm (flat rate): $9

Early bird rate (enter before 10am, exit before 2pm): $12

Weekends (flat rate): $10

The Yarrar River in Melbourne CBD in a dramatic image on a very cloudy day - its tempting to drive on a day like this but that makes where to park in melbourne cbd harder

Melbourne Central car park

Melbourne Central car park has over 880 parking spaces and is located right in the heart of Melbourne CBD. For every $10 you spend at any Melbourne Central store, you pay $8 per hour for parking between 7am and 5pm. Just get your parking ticket validated in store.

Other parking rates are as follows:

  • Standard rate: $16 per hour
  • Evening rate: $12 flat rate after 5pm
  • Earlybird rate: $17 flat rate (enter before 10am, exit after 3pm)

A low angle view of the shot tower in the middle of the Melbourne central shopping centre, which offers cheap parking in melbourne to shoppers, but more expensive parking for non shoppers

Private Parking Melbourne – Book online to save

Many of the private parking garages in Melbourne CBD offer discount rates if you pre-book your parking online, or early-bird rates if you enter the carpark before a designated time.

Use the Secure-a-spot website to search for location, then enter your entry and exit times. Once your booking is complete, you’ll get a code you can get through the boom gates.

The Wilson parking website also lets you search for and book a carpark online If you’re looking for all-day parking, the cheapest option is usually early-bird parking.

Get around multi-modal style with GoGet

Multi-modal transport is more and more common, and helps reduce the demand for parking in Melbourne. Multi-modal transport could mean getting a train to a tram stop, then a tram into the city. Or you could catch a tram to Fitzroy, then walk a few blocks to somewhere else.

With GoGet cars all over Melbourne’s CBD and suburbs, car share is now a big part of the multi-modal shift. If you need to be somewhere not served by public transport, GoGet lets you use public transport some of the way, then grab a car for the last part of the trip.

While GoGet might not help you park in Melbourne today, it could help you never have to park there again! Tens of thousands of Australians use GoGet to replace a car – you can do it too! (It could also save you thousands, by the way!)

Learn More about GoGet