Digital parking payments will leave millions isolated

Almost a fifth (19 per cent) of drivers have said that their local authority is considering scrapping parking payment machines if they have not done so already, according to a recent survey.

The RAC survey polled 1900 UK motorists which highlighted that millions of people across the nation may soon only have the option of paying for parking using their mobile phone, removing the option to pay at a parking machine.

The survey revealed that 59 per cent of respondents said they felt angry about the upcoming changes and believe they should have options to pay via a phone or machine, rising to almost three quarters (73 per cent) of adults over 65.

20 per cent of drivers agreed that they felt discriminated against due to the fact they are unable to use mobile apps to pay for parking.

Elizabeth Anderson, Interim CEO at Digital Poverty Alliance commented:

“It is worrying to see the number of people that feel so concerned about the switch to only offering digital payments for parking, highlighting that digital exclusion is something that effects millions every day. As technology develops, the digital divide becomes even bigger and those who do not have access to either devices or skills will gradually become more and more left behind, with impacts on even simple tasks such as paying for parking.” 

This is a reminder of our mission at the Digital Poverty Alliance. That we all must play our part in ensuring digital poverty iseradicated for all and this means providing individuals with access to devices, connectivity, skills and resources. As our nation becomes increasingly digital, organisations and government must come together or else risk excluding a large number of individuals from society.”

RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “While for many people a switch to purely mobile phone-based parking payment poses no problems, our research clearly shows that for others it spells bad news.

“In fact, a majority of drivers across all age groups think getting rid of parking payment machines is a bad idea.

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