park like a pro

5 best parking tips to navigate Astros playoff week downtown Houston

5 best parking tips to navigate Astros playoff week downtown Houston

Houston Astros parking $80 sign downtown
Skip the $80 lots and park on the cheap.  Photo courtesy of ABC13

It's going to be a busy week in downtown Houston. The Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox face off for Games 3, 4, and 5 of the ALCS and the Rockets host their season opener on Wednesday, October 17.

These sporting events will unfortunately mix with evening commuters, but before you start to stress, remember downtown street parking is free after 6 pm. You may prefer a secure lot or letting someone else do the driving.

Near the intersection of Texas Avenue and Austin Street, we spotted $80 parking during the ALDS. When we went by on a regular weekday: that same lot was just $12.

That's why parking along the METRORail is a good option. The Convention District stops on the green and purple lines are just two blocks from the ballpark.

Use an app like ParkHouston or ParkMobile to find and pay for parking without ever pulling out your wallet. If you reserve your parking in advance, ParkMobile claims that if you simply print a parking permit, even if the lot or garage sells out, a spot will be saved for you.

One more note: Barricades are already blocking most of the street on Texas and Crawford alongside the ballpark, so in your search for the perfect spot, definitely enter downtown on the side of Minute Maid Park where you want to park your vehicle. Don't get stuck trying to get past the stadium to park on the other side.

METRO
Take METRORail to the game. A ride is just $1.25 each way and offers several Park & Ride options. Cheap parking ($3) is available at the Fannin South Transit Center Station. Free parking is available at Northline.

To access Minute Maid Park, exit at the Convention District Station Stop from the Green/Purple Line. Or, from the Red Line, exit the Preston Station stop, and walk six blocks.

Greenlink
The Greenlink Circulator operated by METRO provides curbside service to Minute Maid Park, and it's free. You can park at other cheaper, remote lots around downtown and avoid the walk.

Uber and Lyft
Lyft is offering 25 percent off two rides with code NEVERSETTLE. Uber is offering $15 off to first-time riders with the code GOASTROSGO. Pickup and dropoff is outside Centerfield Gate, between Crawford and Preston streets.

BCycle
Use promo code "2018" at any Houston BCycle station on Tuesday, October 16; Wednesday, October 17; or Thursday, October 18 to get a free 30-minute ride. There's a $3 per 30 minute overage charge. 15 stations are available Downtown, plus another 4 in East End that are a quick walk to the stadium. Find them with the BCycle station map.

$5 Parking
The virtually undiscovered parking garage at 2811 Travis $5 public parking, and it's just a short ride to the ballpark. (You may have missed it because it is located underneath Midtown Park.)

Daytime rates are just a dollar per hour with an $8 maximum. Nighttime, weekend, and special event parking is a $5 flat rate. Once you park, hop on METRORail and ride 10 minutes to the Preston stop.

Other tips

  • Download the ParkMobile App to pay for street parking with your credit card.
  • Park farther away, wear walking shoes, and embrace the walk.
  • Downtown Houston Parking interactive map can help located garages and lots (with hours and capacity), but rates are subject to change.

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For more on this story, including video, visit our content partner ABC13.