Open Market: It's a win-win

The Open Market is a big shift in mobility that unleashes competition between phone parking providers and drives innovation. Parking operators benefit from lower implementation and operating costs, creating a nationwide infrastructure for parking payments that benefits motorists – no matter where they park.

Transforming the way we park

A full roll-out of the National Parking Platform (NPP) in autumn 2024 will establish an Open Market for parking. Research reveals high demand for greater choice and convenience – 83% of parking app users would prefer to use a single app across the UK. The majority (69%) of motorists currently feel frustrated when downloading or redownloading an app to pay for parking.

By bringing hundreds of parking sites into one system, which connects to the apps and payment methods motorists already use, the NPP means:

  • Motorists can pay for parking using their favourite app in any town or city

  • Parking operators (local authorities and private operators) can benefit from cost savings, greater efficiency and no tender process, where applicable

  • Service providers (mobile phone parking operators) can offer better apps and value-added services

  • Towns and cities can access richer parking data to support local policymaking

That’s the Open Market. Follow us on LinkedIn and X for all the latest news and developments.

The future of parking is an Open Market

Discover the Open Market

In an Open Market, motorists choose which parking app is best for their needs: quality of service, user experience, unique features, value – and in the future, additional services such as EV charging.

Open Market: Case study

In 2021, Manchester City Council launched the first NPP pilot. Since then, several other local authorities have joined the scheme, which allows multiple service providers to compete for motorists.

What is the NPP?

The National Parking Platform (NPP) is a DfT-funded, publicly-owned 'parking hub' aimed at simplifying data exchange and digital payments for local authorities and private operators.

An Open Market benefits everyone

Parking operators

  • Provide more choice for drivers: happier motorists, fewer complaints

  • Save money through increased cashless adoption

  • Create fair competition with lower barriers to entry for new providers

  • Remove complex and costly procurement processes

  • Increase resilience by having multiple suppliers to rely on

  • Enhanced data to support informed decisions


  • Can choose their preferred app for parking, wherever they are

  • No need to download multiple apps

  • Improved customer experience as additional services are offered

  • Better connected to mobility services

Service providers

  • Gain focus to provide value for motorists

  • Deliver innovation driven by competition

  • Invest in better apps and smarter ways to pay

  • Create services that appeal to different groups of people

  • Work with simpler, more sustainable business models

  • Easier for new providers to enter the market

Councils can join the Open Market now – and it’s coming soon for private operators

The Open Market is already live via the National Parking Platform (NPP) pilot scheme. Several local authorities – including Manchester, Oxfordshire, Coventry, Peterborough, East Suffolk, Buckinghamshire, and Cheshire West and Chester – are involved in the trial, with others expected to join throughout 2024. Results show that more motorists than ever are choosing to pay for parking and mobility solutions without using cash. 

Local authorities – If your town or city supports greater consumer choice and innovation, and you are keen to increase uptake of mobile phone payments, then Open Market parking is for you. 

Private operators – If you are looking for improved efficiency, greater resilience and enhanced data to support informed decisions, then Open Market parking is for you. 

For more information, visit the NPP website and read our Open Market overview and the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) report.


What is the NPP?

Does it replace the current tender model?

When will the NPP be available nationwide?

Are councils ready for the NPP?

Do councils want a government-funded parking platform?

Can private operators join the NPP?

Is the Open Market in operation elsewhere?

What does the future look like?

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