Nightmare Parking in Kuwait City!

Kuwait City is Magical; it is the perfect fusion of modern and classic, of past and future, of business and pleasure, of fine dining and shopping.

The 2 years I spent working there were amongst the favorite of my career, as it was amazing to be “in the middle” of the City, literally and figuratively!

Lunch was always an adventure, with the plethora of restaurants offering a multitude of dishes, catering to every taste imaginable.

However, despite the obvious attraction of working in Kuwait City, the bane of anyones existence there is undoubtedly the same: Parking.

Unfortunately, Kuwait is experiencing a growth spurt in its driving populace, and the streets are not fit, nor are the parking areas, to accommodate the sudden spike in drivers.


Parking in Kuwait

I love Kuwait City, but Parking is a nightmare! How are those parked meant to exit the parking lot, theres no physically possible way of doing so, unless their cars fly!

I Remember two incidents from my days in the City; I worked in the KAC Building opposite Muthana Complex and Jashnamal, I had to visit the Ministry of Finance often, which was just literally down the road, so most of the time I would just plug in my music and foot it over there, as it took the same time to walk on foot as it did to drive, go there, find a parking spot, do my business, walk back to car, drive back to office, find parking spot again.

One such incident I decided to take my car to the Ministry of Finance’s parking lot. A.K.A hell on earth. It is not an uncommon sight to see a bright “FULL” sign outside parking lots in Kuwait City.

Parking in Kuwait

At the early hours of the morning, all parking lots are already packed to Capacity. How do they even pack those cars in so?


Still I waited in line, got my ticket, and got in.

As I was on the hunt for a spot, I saw a car leaving to my side. Success?

No. I was near the exit, and there was another car coming in from the proper side, vying for the spot that I had mentally staked as mine.

Not to be discouraged, I entered through the exit. In my defense, the parking lot was in total disarray, with people parked in turns, on sidewalks, pavements, wherever they wished. So my daring feat was not out of place, survival of the fittest I say.

Now, the guy on the other side got wind of my treachery, and attempted to intersect, on that day, I was the better driver, and managed to squeeze in before him.

Better luck next time old chap, you would think right? I looked in my rear view, and the man was parked directly behind me, cutting me off. I figured the most I was in for was a few choice words, so I gathered my papers, took a deep breath, put on my “sorry-I-beat-you-to-it” smile and walked out.

The man had something pointed at me; an ID card or something (could have been an AA card for all I know, I’m not good with seeing small objects at a distance), and was yelling. I gathered he was, or he believed himself to be, some Ministry of Interior official or something, bedecked in a dishdasha and giant sunglasses, and was ordering me to show him my “licence and registration“.

The car I was driving was a rental, and with my wallet in my pocket, I told him here is the registration, I left my license in the office.

He went on and on and on about how he would revoke my license, have me retake the test, how there was no respect anymore.

Etc. Etc. Etc.

I wouldn’t have minded the verbal lashing, had it taken place in an environment that supported his claims that “the likes of me” were the ones ruining driving in Kuwait.

He then gave me the registration and sped off.

I was under the impression I would return to find my car towed or my tires slashed. Luckily neither happened.

The second incident, also at the parking lot of the Ministry of Finance, involved my colleague, who was driving at the time, and I was his passenger. As we were leaving the Ministry and getting into his car, he accidentally, and very lightly, bumped his door into the car beside him, which happened to have its owner seated right there inside.

He took offense and honked his horn, motioning wildly inside his car with his windows rolled up.

My colleague apologised, then got in his car, and on the way out again, rolled down his window to issue another apology to the man.

At this point, what would you have done? I was expecting the guy would just say, no harm no foul.

Not this guy.

He was like, yes just make sure you don’t do it again.

Another day of driving in the City!

People are creatures of disorganization. Parking lots quickly turn into scenes of chaos during peak times, with people parking over sidewalks, next to “NO PARKING” signs, or even in the middle of the street!

A bit of a live demonstration, behold, an empty parking lot infront of the building I work in:

Early in the morning, the parking lot is empty, a vast expanse of black, tarmac ocean, calm, serene even.

The Roundabout, no stragglers or lazy parkers... Yet

A short while later:

As you can see, people have already started parking around the edges of the Roundabout, despite the parking lot having PLENTY of empty space, albeit a short distance farther from the buildings where these parkers wish to go.

The parking lot, midday, HAVOC


August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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