Parking up! Most fined areas for parking tickets in NI – as 25% worry how they will afford to pay


Data analysed by shows the council areas that received the most and least parking tickets in Northern Ireland as they exceed 39,000 in one year.

The data showed that, out of the ten council areas reviewed*, Fermanagh and Omagh was the most fined area for parking tickets, with 6695 issued in the most recent 12-month period with a total cost in excess of £301,275.

The council estimate the total figure is between £301,275 – £903,825, ranging from the minimum to the maximum fine enforced, depending on when the driver pays the fine and not including tickets that were successfully appealed.

Derry City and Strabane had the second highest number of parking tickets issued with 6478 tickets issued, with a total cost of £153,229.

Ards and North Down had the third highest number of parking tickets issued at 6,035.

Belfast had the fourth highest with 5748 fines issued, followed by Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon with 3676, Mid and East Antrim 3007 and Mid Ulster 2910.

Other areas had much lower amounts of parking tickets. Antrim and Newtownabbey saw the lowest amount of fines issued with 488 and a total cost of £17,752.

Lisburn and Castlereagh and Newry, Mourne and Down also had low amounts of parking fines issued with 2087 and 2295 respectively.

In a recent survey by 77% of respondents said parking tickets were too expensive, with 66% saying they should be more lenient.  Parking fines are currently £90, dropping to £45 if paid within 14 days.  

When asked how they should be made more lenient, the most popular answers were; to get a warning before a fine (51%), make the fines cheaper (37%) and give people more time to pay their fine (10%).

A quarter of those surveyed also said they have been worried about how they are going to pay a parking ticket.

For survey respondents that had received a ticket, there were a number of reasons cited. The most popular reasons were being unsure of parking rules (29%) and not knowing that a payment was required (23%).

Some of the most popular reasons people get parking tickets:

-Parked with some of the car covering a double yellow

-Parked outside the given parking hours for that particular spot

-More parking time was purchased after the maximum stay had been reached and the vehicle had not moved

-Returning or continuing to park in a ‘no return’ area

-Parking on a single yellow line or area with kerb markings – designed for loading only

-Not parked correctly within the parking markings

Ian Wilson, Managing Director of said: “With the rising cost of car insurance, fuel and repairs, paying out money for parking fines is added pressure for NI drivers at an already difficult financial time.

“To help avoid tickets, it’s important drivers always check their surroundings thoroughly for signs and signals on parking requirements, as the majority of drivers we surveyed got their ticket due to uncertainty around rules and payments.  If in any doubt, drivers can look up parking restrictions in that area online to double check.

“If you think you have been unfairly fined you can always appeal the ticket. It’s important to act quickly and have sufficient evidence if you’re appealing. Drivers may be put off by the hassle of challenging a ticket, but it can be done quickly online through the NI direct website. Our survey also showed 56% of respondents who challenged a ticket won the appeal.” helps hundreds of thousands of drivers every year find savings on car insurance plus niche items such as taxi and van insurance, and car finance. 

District CouncilParking tickets in last yearTotal cost of fines (min.-max.fined)**
Fermanagh and Omagh6,695£301,275 – £903,825
Derry City and Strabane6,478£153,229
Ards and North Down6,035£271,575-814,725
Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon3,676£135,885
Mid and East Antrim3,007£105,075
Mid Ulster2,910£261,900
Newry, Mourne and Down2,295£103,275 – 309,825
Lisburn and Castlereagh2,087£93,915- 281,745
Antrim and Newtownabbey488£17,752
Causeway Coast and Glens  Pending information
*Gathered via a Freedom of Information Request Jan 2024.  At the time of writing this article Causeway Coast and Glens council area was pending information.

**Fines vary between £45 – 90 dependent upon when they were paid and, in certain circumstances, can elevate to £135.

Survey QuestionResponse
Do you think parking tickets are too expensive? Yes-77%
Do you think parking offences should be more lenient? Yes-66%
If yes, how?Get a warning before a fine-50%              
 Make the fine cheaper- 37%                                                                  
 More time to pay the fine-9% 
 Get penalty points instead-2% 
Have you ever been worried about how you are going to pay for a parking ticket?Yes-25%
If you have gotten a parking ticket in the past, what was the cause?Unsure of parking rules-30%    
Didn’t know payment was required-23%
Parking app wouldn’t work-4%
No change available for meter-3%
Didn’t have enough money to pay-1%       
If you have appealed a parking ticket, did you win?Yes-56%
N/A- 1%
*’s findings are based on a randomised survey of 500 respondents across Northern Ireland in March 2024, which represents a margin of error of approximately 5% at a 95% confidence level.

This article is intended as generic information only and is not intended to apply to anybody’s specific circumstances, demands or needs. The views expressed are not intended to provide any financial service or to give any recommendation or advice. Products and services are only mentioned for illustrative rather than promotional purposes.