Ringstead Bay parking prices anger Dorset tourists | United Kingdom | New
Visitors to Ringstead Bay in Dorset fear the £6 charge at a private car park, a five-minute walk from the attraction, could harm the area’s tourist industry. The fee is fixed, regardless of the duration spent in the car park and payable at the entrance.
The owner of the car park has been accused online of ‘defrauding tourists at the expense of locals’.
And staff at the adjacent kiosk cafe, which serves meals, snacks and drinks, and is separate from the parking lot, say they are “sorry about it”.
One tourist wrote online: ‘Atrocious parking charges and you’re accosted by cafe staff for payment before you’ve even finished parking. £6 flat fee – locals don’t take advantage of their own neighborhood to short walks so will not support this a local business again.
“Should be a variable parking charge. I would recommend using the National Trust car park instead. Very poor, just intended to scam tourists at the expense of locals, and it’s not even peak holiday season. “
A more recent review suggested there should be a varying price structure depending on how many hours visitors want to stay, reports Dorset Live.
He wrote: ‘Very disappointed that this off map location is charging an extortionate £6 fixed parking charge. Before the engine was turned off bags of money were there demanding that we pay, this could easily be resolved by having charges that only apply for a few hours instead of the whole day.”
However, some reviewers were more sympathetic to the £6 parking charge, with one person calling it a “bargain” and welcoming the choice of car parks. She commented: “Anyone who complains about the cost, go straight back to the top and walk down – people still want it all for nothing!”
A tourist who recently visited Ringstead Beach felt it was a small price to pay to bypass a longer coastal walk. He said: “I didn’t know the parking charge until I arrived but was happy to pay it. It was either park at the National Trust car park, walk a mile and end up at the beach or pay a little extra but being closer to the beach and a cafe.
“It’s up to visitors whether they want to pay or not and they are free to choose where to park.”
Dorset Live has attempted to contact the owner of the car park for comment.