Opinions on Stealth Hotel Parking?

Hey guys,

I was just wondering what you all think about stealth parking in hotel parking lots? One female car-dweller on YouTube suggested to look-up “hotels with free parking” through google maps or Booking.com.

I’m planning a trip soon and part of my plan was to stay in hotel parking lots, but my concern is getting caught and safety. Also does anyone have experience parking in hospital parking lots? Thanks guys!

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Most parking lots are private property, and are considered to be used by paying customers only, and only while shopping in the store, or staying in a motel/hotel etc. Unless it’s something like Walmart & okay, I’d avoid them. Many private parking lots are regularly patrolled by tow trucks, especially hotel/motel lots, because they keep close track of who’s coming & going.

When traveling, I prefer rest areas or truck stops. Truck stops have the advantage of food if I don’t feel like cooking.

If I’m going to be in a town for a while, I prefer street parking. Just pick somewhere where you’ll blend in, and there are other cars parked overnight. With written permission, but ONLY with written permission, would I consider most parking lots. Park & Rides can be hit or miss, but often a target for break ins.

Sometimes you can get away with telling the cops, security, or tow trucks, that you’re from out of town and waiting for the business to open, but this can be risky, especially with tow trucks.


“Everything should be made as simple as possible." ~ Einstein

I won’t be on the road until a few months from now and will rarely be staying in town but I know others also suggest:

  • larger hotels or areas where there are several hotels with lots of cars

  • airports

  • industrial/warehouse areas

  • office parks

  • churches

  • Cracker Barrels

  • truck stops (don’t take spaces from the truckers)

  • Cabela’s

In my online research, I was surprised to find many rest stops that don’t allow overnight parking. Seems like more of them are keeping city park hours now.

I’ve noticed nomads reporting what @Van_Dweller said, more businesses are using security guards now. I was disappointed to learn that parking overnight is banned at more Planet Fitnesses now.



For hotels/motels, industrial/warehouse areas, office parks, & churchs, I would only park on the street if it’s allowed.

I wouldn’t park in a church parking lot without written permission.

I’ve never camped at an airport, but I would suspect it would be too noisy for me.

Many rest areas seem to post 8 hour limits, but don’t specify which 8 hours. I’ve stayed longer a few times, maybe closer to 12 hours, without problems. That could be changing though, and can vary by area. Usually the ones closer to towns are likely to only allow shorter stays.


“Everything should be made as simple as possible." ~ Einstein


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