German Town Designates ‘Easy’ Parking Spots for Women

Women are free to try to park in the tighter spots, insists Triberg's mayor. It's just better left to the menfolk

  • Share
  • Read Later
ERproductions Ltd/Getty

Isn’t it cute when women try to park their cars without their menfolk? The German town of Triberg has generously attempted to help out the ladies by labeling the spaces in a new car park with female and male symbols. The “female” spots are wider with lots of light, whereas the “male” spots are next to concrete pillars and can only be backed in to, according to the Daily Telegraph.

The mayor of the town said it was a natural decision, given that (of course) women find parking trickier than men do. “In the new car park, we found that two places were not rectangular, at an angle to the road and placed between walls and pillars,” Triberg Mayor Gallus Strobel told German newsmagazine Der Spiegel.  “That makes parking difficult, so we decided to allocate them to men.” Instead of, say, to motorcycles or subcompact cars.

(MORE: Woman Are Better than Men at Parking, Study Finds)

He claims the move is not sexist because women are free to try parking in the trickier man spots, and that more spots — 10 — had been allocated for women than for men: 2. He also dismisses what he calls “humourless reactions from the politically correct.”

Unsurprisingly to everyone but Strobel, the move has caused a media firestorm. “I never expected this reaction,” said Strobel. “I’ve been on the phone all day, the TV will come. I am happy, and it looks like we’ve hit a raw nerve in society. It’s been a great marketing gimmick. Women can come here and prove me wrong, and while they’re at it, they can see the town’s attractions.”

MORE: Sexist Ads from the Mad Men Era

Sort: Newest | Oldest

So the women can park in both the men's parking spots and the women's parking spots, but I suppose that men can only park in the men's parking spots? And there are more women's parking spots than men's parking spots? Yeah, that's equality. So what else is new? LOL.

Cass Andra
Cass Andra

Having read the original article on Der Spiegel's website (linked above), I must say that your article and especially its headline are highly misleading and some of the quotes are taken out of context.

The headline also has a somewhat sexist undertone to it.

It has been common practice for some twenty years or so that (underground) car parks in Germany designate special parking spaces or even small areas for women. 

These special parking spaces are, contrary to your statement above, nowhere any wider or easier to park in than the 'normal' parking spaces: 

the 'women's parking spaces' are usually located close to the exits of (underground) car parks as these spaces are better lit than those farthest away from the exit doors and the walking distance to the parked cars is shorter. 

This is done in order to make women traveling alone feel more comfortable and safer in underground car parks and less susceptible to attacks (e.g. of a sexual nature or mugging).

This measure was introduced long before CCTV (surveillance cameras) were plastered all over car parks and seemed very reasonable at that time. Apparently, it was also warmly welcomed back then.

As for the specially designated 'men's parking spaces' cited in the article above:

Mayor Strobel indicated that those spaces are possibly due to bad planning/ designing of the car park recently constructed in his city: 

[quote] "In the new car park, we found that two places were not rectangular, at an angle to the road and placed between walls and pillars" [/unquote] 

Rather than wasting these spaces, which are apparently difficult to park in, the city council apparently had a good laugh and allocated them as "men's parking spaces", taking a humorous approach to widespread gender stereotypes. 

The original article on Der Spiegel's website also reports that apparently an equal number of men and women are trying to use the rather tricky "men's parking places" to prove themselves.  

That actually sheds new light on your highly misleading and somewhat sexist headline, doesn't it?


I saw a woman in traffic the other day painting her toenails and eating breakfast.  Just sayin.


Aside from the issue of parking abilities, as a woman I'd be happier to take one of those spots.  If they are wider and well-lit, there's less of a likelihood of being assaulted.  Glass half full, ladies! :)


You're completely right =) And while the women are taking advantage of the sexist but better spaces, the men won't dare park there since that would make them feel smaller, in more ways than one..


At risk of being sanctioned as chauvinist, I don't know about parking, or so called self serving "studies", but I am invariably more careful around female drivers than male drivers.In my life experience , the woman driver is worse than the male.It is so evident it is predictable many times.Males can be bad too-reckless and competitive-i'll give you that, but female drivers are more hesitant and unsure and  sometimes become surprisingly aggressive.Women cannot "according to studies"measure space distance as well-so perhaps that is why the parking discrimination,

Donna Carnathan Gooding
Donna Carnathan Gooding

The Answer Is ...In a study released by Quality Planning, an analytics company that validates policyholder information for auto insurers, women came out on top.

The study analyzed different kinds of vehicle code violations (traffic violations) and then compared how many times men were cited versus women. The conclusion was that men break more traffic laws and drive more dangerously than women. Because they violate laws designed to make the roads safer, men cause more accidents and expensive damage.

Who do you think are better drivers: Men or Women?

"We were not surprised to see that men have slightly more violations — about 5 percent — that result in accidents than women," said Raj Bhat, president of Quality Planning. "And because men are also more likely to violate laws for speeding, passing and yielding, the resulting accidents caused by men lead to more expensive claims than those caused by women."

Topping the list is the finding that men are cited for reckless driving 3.41 more times than women. Reckless driving is considered one of the most serious traffic offenses by courts since it implies a disregard for the rights and safety of people or property.

Violations for which men scored at least 50 percent higher than women:


Reckless driving3.41


Seatbelt violations3.08


Failure to yield1.54

Stop sign/signal violation1.53

Evidence Gets Worse

Guys, when it rains it pours. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, more men than women die each year in motor vehicle crashes. "Men take more risks behind the wheel than women, and so men are more likely to get into serious crashes," says Anne McCartt, the institute's senior vice president of research. "We don't have any way of comparing their driving abilities, but on the likelihood of getting into a serious crash in which someone dies, men win handily."


Let me admit right now that I don't have a link and cannot recall any specifics, but I am certain there was a report a year or two ago that concluded women do in fact have more difficulty negotiating their cars into awkward spaces, and the report was part of a larger scrupulously scientific study. Of course there are exceptions, but the generalization stands up to study. Also, you are talking about aggressive driving, risk-taking, disregard for the law etc. I am talking about the ability align one's vehicle equidistantly between the surrounding vehicles and to accurately judge those parameters when backing into a parking space.

Bottom line...take the wider spaces and we'll all be better off.