Review: SpotHero should be called SpotZero

It sucks when you reserve and pay for a space and find out when you get there that the garage is 3/4 empty and charging drive-ups less than you paid for your reservation. I have not used SpotHero but another app.

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Sounds like they handled it surprisingly nicely. Honestly I’m surprised you’re putting them on blast for this.


That’s cool. You should give them a try!


There’s certainly nothing in this review that would prevent me from using them. Maybe I just have lower expectations from these apps, but I was expecting them to ghost you and keep your money. But they struck me as professional, prompt, and downright nice, dealing with a tough situation. Surprisingly so, to me at least.

But that’s why I drive an old metermaid car, so I never have to worry about parking, ha.

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So be it. Maybe people who do not drive old metermaid cars will read this review and SpotHero will win their custom.


Huh? It should pretty clearly be on the app that’s renting you a parking spot to be sure that they’re allowed to rent the spot they’re giving you. They kinda failed at their most basic job.


Charging for parking is wrong, full stop.

If a business wants your patronage, it should provide parking.

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How exactly is a business with 30’ of curbside supposed to manifest an entire lot for their customers? What about businesses who ARE parking companies?


I’m sure the many thousands of businesses without their own dedicated parking lot will have no problem inventing a time machine to go back and re-do how the cities they are in were laid out.


I would suggest that average time and cost to park is what you should compare against, i.e what is the normal amount of time you would have allowed to park and walk to the restaurant? Add the cost to park. That would be the basis for comparison for the cost - convenience tradeoff. Not best case where nothing goes awry. I get the urge to want a do-over (credit for both parking charges), but I don’t get the double-credit for hassle. Parking in Hollywood is a pain with or without an app.

Your offer for a credit is a nice gesture, but I think the following is more fair:

  • A refund of $14 ($6 for my SpotHero charge [receipt attached] and $8 for the parking meter [receipt attached]).

  • A $20 SpotHero credit as a token to compensate me for the hassle of looking for another parking spot, the stress and embarrassment of being late for a business meeting, and the time it has taken for me to work with SpotHero to correct the problem.

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But I paid in advance not to have the pain. That seems to be the point of SpotHero, no?


Find a crack in the modern world, insert your app and charge rent. Market capture would be when so many lots are part of it that you have to use the app to get a spot.

Speaking of cracks, how about if I make an app, HereISit, for reserving washroom stalls? You reserve a slot, it takes care of queuing, tells you when you’re up, and your phone unlocks the stall. Add a rating system, personal walls, etc.

Market capture would be when if you don’t use the app, you’re … shit out of luck. :sunglasses:

Anyone want to drop half a billion investment?


Lol. Do you live in Wyoming or something?


Boston. Real estate ain’t exactly abundant, nor cheap. But if you don’t provide parking, and I can’t ride a bike to you, I’m shopping/dining/going somewhere else. Let the tourists pay to park.

I had a similar experience from them in Philly. I won’t be using them again.

Personally I think a far better idea is to completely get rid of cars (except deliveries) in dense urban areas… Or at least to enact policies that discourage their daily use.


But they’re disrupting parking! Sounds like your parking experience has been disrupted.

Mission Accomplished!


But if parking is free then you’re subsidizing the car drivers every time you walk or bike to the place. Parking has a real cost and it makes sense to separate that cost from the separate transaction you’re making with the business. Otherwise you’re just externalizing the true parking cost. Products and services then get more expensive to pay for that and inefficiencies creep in raising costs more than the parking used to cost.

Living in Boston and railing against paid parking sounds like a very frustrating hobby. :wink:


If you can’t pay for parking: Boston isn’t interested in your patronage.

By my math Mark is out of pocket $8, not to mention no compensation for the hassle and embarrassment. Maybe there is something in their T&C that they reserve the right to screw you over, but if that’s the case we’re lowering expectations a bit, no? Their agents’ language may have been pleasant but that doesn’t change the fact that the remedy was inadequate.