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To not understand why people say reverse bay parking is easier?

(88 Posts)
crashdoll Sun 07-Apr-13 19:53:29

I was taught how to reverse bay park properly but I find it such a challenge. Everyone says it's so much easier to reverse park. However, I have practiced reversing in to spaces and driving in and I have deduced that driving straight in is easier. I don't find reversing out of spaces difficult at all, it comes much more naturally tome. Maybe it's easier for some people but not for me!


chris481 Mon 08-Apr-13 11:15:10


For the first ten years or so of driving I used to reverse park, purely to make it easier to leave. (Easier as in easier manoeuvre - was not really bothered about the visibility issue.) Then I decided it was illogical: there are two dimensions of difficulty, forwards/backwards and in/out, and I thought that generally speaking it's easier to drive a car forwards than backwards, and easier to drive out of a space (into a larger space) than in, average difficulty will be the same whatever you do, but taking maximum difficulty as a metric, reverse parking must be illogical since it combines the more difficult options from each dimension.

So I switched to forward parking.

I did not actually go into a car park and practise both to see if one felt easier than the other though. I don't understand why people say it is easier to steer a car in reverse, which contradicts one of my assumptions.

I suspect if reverse parking were really easier, more people would do it. In my office car park, where access to the boot is presumably not a factor, almost no-one reverse parks. So I suspect the people who say it's easier are simply wrong. (Wanting better visibility pulling out may be a legimate reason for doing it thought.)

BiddyPop Mon 08-Apr-13 10:13:33

I always find it easier to reverse in and go forward out. I am more terrified of not seeing something coming (and not stopping) as I reverse out while reversing in is reasonably straightforward (I am happy to move out and realign if need be) - and I have effectively stopped the cars coming around me while I do that so they won't hit me.

I learned a method of sideways on parking here in MN (or was it MagicMum?) - align your front tyre with the front tyre of the car parked in front of your spot, lock hard to the left (so you're moving left) and reverse into the space, straightening up the wheels once your back wheel is close enough to the kerb - you should make it in 1 manoeuvre (2 max if space is tight). It now also means I am able to sideways park in a right hand space as well as left!! YAY!!

But then, I learned to drive in a bit of a tank (fiat argenta), with a Volvo estate (not a titchy one) as the alternative once Dad was convinced I wouldn't scrape the paintwork. And since then, have taken on a lot of different sizes and shapes, and a few LH drives as well (mostly abroad, but once here).

crashdoll Mon 08-Apr-13 09:49:29

A couple of people asked me "why AIBU?" well, because when I've talked to family members and friends, they look at me like I'm crazy when I say I find driving in and reversing out easier. Parking choices always seems to generate debate, especially in my family.

Doyouthinktheysaurus Mon 08-Apr-13 08:52:08

I have a Ford Galaxy, it's a never ending length of car behind me! I can reverse in no problem, but I'm buggered if I can reverse out! Not a hope in hellconfused

I used to go in forwards in my Vauxhall vectra but we needed the bigger car and it's a small price to pay.

Where possible I park the arse end of nowhere anyway, all by myself and walkgrin

MiaowTheCat Mon 08-Apr-13 08:42:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Trazzletoes Mon 08-Apr-13 05:47:54

YABU. Reversing in is much easier!

Lueji Mon 08-Apr-13 05:29:40

Oh, and I hate it when twats helpful gentlemen start giving tips when I reverse park. It makes me want accidentally climb the kerb.

Lueji Mon 08-Apr-13 05:25:39

On busy roads to parallel park I often drive in and then maneuvre so that the final movements are the same as reversing.
Front parallel parking is never as neat as reverse.

Lueji Mon 08-Apr-13 05:20:20

Then he told me how impressed he was and ever since l reverse park like a five year old

My DS has been able to reverse park and parallel park (!) and do a 3 point turn since he was about 5 in his electric car. grin

BigBoobiedBertha Mon 08-Apr-13 04:43:02

"You do know reverse parking is between two cars at the side of the road, not a supermarket parking space"

No parking between 2 cars on the side of the road is parallel parking which is a specific type of reverse parking. Reversing into a parking space in a car park is, well, reverse parking.

BigBoobiedBertha Mon 08-Apr-13 04:34:03

YABU . Reverse parking is much easier, and uses less fuel and is kinder to a cold engine when you leave the soace plus it is safer.

I do drive into parking spaces for a big shop at the supermarket but it needs more room to swing into the space, it is much harder to do it neatly in one move and it takes longer to get out of the space as you risk injury to yourself, the car and other people because visibility is so poor especially if somebody with a van or a 4 wheel drive truck thing parks next to you and you can't see over the top. I would reverse in if I could guarantee the person behind leaves enough room to open the boot and stand behind the car but they don't always so front parking it is. Everywhere else, reversing is the best.

Most of all I don't want to be one of those cliched women who can't park that chauvinists would have us believe is the norm with women drivers.

sashh Mon 08-Apr-13 03:10:47

I have practiced reversing in to spaces and driving in and I have deduced that driving straight in is easier.

You do know reverse parking is between two cars at the side of the road, not a supermarket parking space.

SquinkiesRule Mon 08-Apr-13 02:26:58

I'm crap at reversing, I never reverse in to park mainly because I need to open. the boot to load up bags of food. reversing in makes that difficult.

kickassangel Mon 08-Apr-13 02:15:20

If you try to reverse off a busy road, and someone comes along to fast, it is much harder to reverse quickly into the driveway as you're negotiating into a narrower space. So you are left out on the road and vulnerable.

If you are starting to reverse onto the road, and an idiot appears, putting the car in first gear and driving forwards onto the driveway is much quicker.

So it's safer to go forwards onto the drive. Unless there's a high wall obscuring the view.

Fwiw, I can do all sorts of fancy pants parallel and reverse parking, in both the US and UK. I park according to the circumstances, not with some arbitrary rule book in my head.

IloveJudgeJudy Mon 08-Apr-13 01:31:22

I believe that if you live on a main road, you have to reverse park on your drive as it's much safer to drive out. I always reverse park, except at the supermarket as I wouldn't be able to access my boot as the spaces are tight and not very long (my Zafira takes up the whole length of the space). It's just a matter of practice. There are loads of videos on the web telling you how to do it. Like many others on here, I can reverse park within inches. If I start off wrong, I just pull out and start again, but that hardly ever happens.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 07-Apr-13 23:51:05

There's a multi story near me with tiny spaces and no way would I be able to swing the car forwards into one of the spaces. Can only get in by reversing.

boxoftricks Sun 07-Apr-13 23:47:30

At my friends work car park, they HAVE to reverse park. If not, you get a note and a warning!

sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 23:45:20

grin @ image of Tiggys passengers diving out of still moving vehicle and kissing the terra firma in supermarket car park.

'What was that ? Do we want a lift home? Err no you're alright we'll get a taxi' grin

sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 23:36:59

grin - even.

sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 23:35:46

<polishes collection of neighbours wing mirrors >


sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 23:31:30


Yeah it's daft that l cant do it to save my life now when DH is in the car or watching nearby. It's like l'm under pressure to perform now really.
So my new speciality is the 21 point turn instead grin.

LunaticFringe Sun 07-Apr-13 23:14:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tiggytape Sun 07-Apr-13 23:10:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 22:53:18

That was to Tiggytape btw.

sudaname Sun 07-Apr-13 22:49:39

My DH always says whenever we drive past anyone struggling to reverse out of their drive on a busy road. 'Reverse in,drive out,it's the way forward !'

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