Question for the Americans... as seen on TV

I hear it on movies and American TV shows. What is the purpose and process of “validating parking”? I’m curious about how it works and what it is.

Here we have parking that’s free but for the sign posted time limit. You can be ticketed with a fine if you go over and the inspector catches you.

We also have parking with meters that you feed coins into, the modern meters have electronic paying, these will still cop you a fine if you don’t shift your car before it expires.

We also have commercial parking structures that are costly, but you’ll avoid a parking fine if you aren’t back by a set time, you’ll just pay loads more.

Here is the U.S. Validated parking is usually in a parking building that charges for parking by the hour. Some businesses that use those parking buildings for their customers stamp the back of the ticket you get when you enter the parking and you don’ t have to pay for the parking.

What @Lorantell said. Although it can also be an automated system. I was recently visiting a hospital “campus” in order to visit sick a family member. You pull a ticket from a ticket dispenser which triggers the lifting arm to let you drive in to the parking building. There was a per hour rate, with a maximum daily amount. In order to leave, you use an ATM like machine to pay for parking. The ticket scanner next to lifting arm reads the ticket and lets you out, if paid. For those of us visiting patients, the front desk would scan, or “validate”, the ticket so that it showed as paid, i.e. no parking charge. In this instance, I believe that system is meant to discourage casual visitors who are just out for a walk, visiting the shops, etc, to keep parking available for hospital visitors.

Thank you both for explaining it. Unfortunately that doesn’t exist anywhere I’ve been.

It’s said in so many movies and tv shows, generally following the receipt of something negative, as some kind of consolation prize. “You don’t get the job, but get my assistant to validate your parking on the way out.” Something to take the sting out of rejection, must be so great, I’ve gotta get me some of that… LoL but WTF is it?

I’m certain if they surveyed all productions made in the USA, on whether or not they mention Validating Parking, I believe the “does mention” count would exceed the “does not mention”.