Saturday, March 01, 2008
Ever since Muscat Municipality introduced paid parking in the CBD area I've been buying 3 or 6 months permits to avoid the hassle of having to have coins for the parking meters. However, when I'm not driving my car, I use Oman Mobile's SMS Parking service, which I think is one of the best services ever. Unfortunately it has one major shortfall: if you send the message to pay for parking during a free parking period it will just send you a reply "this is a free parking period." There's no option of sending the SMS before the paid parking period begins.
Ever since I changed cars in December I've been procrastinating in getting a new parking permit because I want to first re-register the car under my old number from the car that I sold. Otherwise, I'd have to get a permit under the present number and then go back again to the municipality when I change the number plate to amend the permit. I've been using SMS Parking every single day for over two months. But in the last week now that I've moved to the new house, I've been leaving home extra early to beat the morning traffic and I arrive at work before 7.30. Paid parking begins at 8am and I forget to send the SMS at 8am to pay for the parking. I got three parking tickets in the last week.
By the way, I've been to the police twice to do the number change and both times they found excuses not to do it. Now it looks that the only way to get it done is to have the car's ownership transferred, registered, and then transferred back to me without it's current number and registered under my old number which is reserved for me in the system (for just two more weeks or I lose it). Sounds to me like an excuse to make me pay registration fees for the car twice (thrice actually). What a hassle.