How do I 90-degree park a car?

Updated July 20, 2017

Parking at a 90-degree angle, also referred to as a perpendicular parking, is often used in car parks, shopping centres and sometimes along street curbs. With a little practice, parking at a 90-degree angle can become an easy task.

Select a parking space that has enough room on each side for you to enter and exit your car comfortably.

Turn on your right or left signal, according to the direction you will turn to enter the space. This communicates to other drivers and pedestrians that you are preparing to park.

Approach the space by slowly swinging your car away from the row of cars containing the space. The further away you are from the space, the easier it will be to drive into it. A good distance is at least eight feet between your car and the row of cars in which you are parking.

Position your car so your front bumper is slightly past the taillights of the car immediately before your selected space. Your car should be facing straight forward. Pay close attention to the parking space you are about to pull into, particularly the lines on either side of it.

Turn the wheel sharply, and enter the space slowly. Straighten the wheels as you pull into the spot, centring your vehicle as you enter the space.

Check to verify that your car is centred in the parking spot. If it is too close to one side or the other, shift your car into reverse and back straight out until you can see the yellow lines in front of you. Correct your angle as you move your car forward, centring your car so there is equal space on either side of it.

Pull far enough into the space so that your rear bumper does not extend into the driving lane of the car park. The front of your vehicle should not cross the vertical line in front of the space. Stop with your wheels straight and your vehicle centred in the space.

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About the Author

Rhonda Dents began writing professionally in 2010. A life-long resident of New Orleans, Rhonda Dents began writing for corporate America in 1995. Dents' areas of expertise are business, cooking and family. She is currently working on a screenplay, and is a contributor to several online websites. Rhonda studied journalism at Marquette University.