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New Yorkers Share Their Secrets For Scoring The Perfect Parking Spot

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- New Yorkers can lose as many as 107 hours a year trying to find parking.

It's a task made even harder during the holidays. But there are those who pull into the perfect spot every time with little to no searching.

CBS2's Dana Tyler explored the secret to scoring a spot.

Free street parking is like finding the Holy Grail.

"It's very difficult. We've got nearly two million registered vehicles in the city," said AAA's Robert Sinclair Jr.

But there are things you can do to increase your chances of finding a free spot.

In the city, look on the avenues first, because commercial and metered parking typically end between 6 and 7 p.m., opening up more spaces.

In the suburbs, instead of circling a mall parking lot, survey the outlying areas first. That's where you'll find more spaces and less traffic.

Wherever you are, employ the help of some new technology.

Parknav, for example, uses location data from users' cellphones to help you find open parking spots. BestParking is another service that collects and organizes available parking spaces in an area on a Google Map.

Sinclair said there are so many options.

"There are apps that exist where a person who is in a parking spot can post up that they're in a space and they'll be leaving soon," he said. "It can notify you and you can scurry to that location."

Tzvee Zahavy says he's honed a sort of instinctual parking radar.

"You need to not get angry. Take a deep breath," he said. "I would say 75-80 percent of the time I find a spot."

His No. 1 suggestion?

"Go to the place where you want to be and start looking there. That's my principle No. 1 of my parking radar," he said.

Arlene Murphy shares a similar parking philosophy, which she calls the ask-believe-receive method.

"You're just basically getting in your car, visualizing where you are going, and fully expecting a parking spot to be right there," she said.

You might be skeptical of her parking positivity, but Murphy swears by it.

"For me, it works 100 percent of the time," she said.

"Whatever your mojo might be that you need to be able to find a parking space, use it," Sinclair added.

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