View Full Version : Lidl Parking Scam

Harold Gough
14th January 2016, 01:26 PM
Lidl is introducing a scheme where you can park for 10 minutes without charge but will have to pay 90 if you exceed that time.


The answer: shop at Aldi!


14th January 2016, 02:36 PM
They tried this at our local Tesco, and there was uproar... Tesco lost a lot of money over the fiasco. One of the shop workers had over 900 in fine notices.

It is a scam, as only a legally issued PCN needs to be paid or challenged.

Google "anpr scam" and it's all there to read...

14th January 2016, 02:48 PM
They tried this at our local Tesco, and there was uproar... Tesco lost a lot of money over the fiasco. One of the shop workers had over 900 in fine notices.

It is a scam, as only a legally issued PCN needs to be paid or challenged.

Google "anpr scam" and it's all there to read...

I got stung for a 100 "fine" last year for staying over 2 hours at a Motorway service station (I stopped for a meal and a rest). It was all documented through ANPR. I sent them a strong complaint, complete with receipts for the meal, and also mailed Starbucks to complain. I never heard back and certainly haven't paid. Private parking "PCNs" are always worth contesting.

14th January 2016, 02:57 PM
Wondering how you differentiate between legal and private PCN - what do you look out for? My wife got stung at a similar set up to you Paul, she paid! I wasn't aware of the difference.

14th January 2016, 03:05 PM
I believe only Central & Local Government can issue a Penalty Charge Notice.

These "parking" charge notices are issued by private companies. Many of them are in breach of the rules set out by the British Parking Association Ltd (BPA) Approved Operator Scheme.

They make them look "official" in the hope that you will pay... :mad:

14th January 2016, 05:59 PM
Without entering into the debate on the legality of PCNs (this is a seperate issue in its own right) I think supermarkets should be able to restrict car parking on their own premises to their own customers with some financial recompense for those parking who are not their customers. Such parking fees should be at a level which is a deterrence to avoid general parking.

My own LIDL operates a similar scheme of free to customers and 90 for non customers which is clearly stated. Perhaps in the reported case the 10 minutes is to allow a driver to enter the car park and determine if there is a parking space available, and if not drive out without penalty. 10 minutes is quite sufficient for what is typically a small cra park of around 30 spaces.

Where I strongly disagree is the short term parking in motorway service stations where for reasons of safety (to prevent falling asleep at the wheel) the limit should be dramatically increased from the usual 2 hours.

14th January 2016, 06:52 PM
I also contested a parking charge at a railway station where I paid late using the RingGo phone service. After almost a year of letters from successive debt collection companies they eventually gave up. My argument was simply this:

- As a private operator, they can't fine me. All they can do is say I'm in breach of contract (terms of which must be clearly displayed and which I accept by parking there).

- If I've breached contract, they can levy a charge to cover their loss due to breach. But, they must provide a so-called "pre-estimate of loss" which must be reasonable.

- In my case, I had in fact paid so they suffered no loss of revenue. The only cost they had was persusing me for 100. I actually received a letter which basically said their estimate of loss was for the costs associated with getting 100 from me. So, they wanted 100 for their costs of getting 100 off me. AKA - a scam!

- I had threats about loss of credit rating etc, but it was all baloney. There is no debt until a court rules that I'm in breach and they agree damages.

- Of course, parking companies do take non-payers to court and sometimes win, but if you've got even a half-decent defence it's unlikely they will. In the meantime, they'll get debt collection companies to try strong arm tactics on you but it's all bluff. Don't fall for it.

- Even the big parking companies like MET etc are there to extract money off you anyway they can. Don't fall for it!

Naughty Nigel
14th January 2016, 08:44 PM
How do they know whether you are a customer or not?

Presumably you don't receive a letter for several days by which time any receipts will have been disposed of. If you paid by cash there would be no record at all.

If they tried it on with me I would demand that they took me to court. I doubt that a Judge would consider their actions or their charges 'reasonable'. :mad:

I had a similar issue with nPower who sent me an electricity bill six years after I had left a business premises. They tried every scare tactic in the book including phone calls from debt collectors and letters designed to look as if they were written by solicitors, but try as I might they would not take me to court. *livid

14th January 2016, 10:29 PM
Worth having a read here;
http://www.pepipoo.com/search-results.htm?cx=002954149332536547518%3Aurx9dzjvubm&cof=FORID%3A9&ie=UTF-8&q=athena+lidl&sa=Search&siteurl=forums.pepipoo.com%2Findex.php%3Fshowforum %3D60&ref=forums.pepipoo.com%2Findex.php%3Fact%3Didx&ss=5312j2970610j11

The Technician
15th January 2016, 09:09 AM
Have a look at this web site.

15th January 2016, 11:15 AM
How do they know whether you are a customer or not?...
You give your registration number at the till and they tap it into a machine that brings up a picture of your registration plate.

Harold Gough
20th February 2016, 10:10 AM
I visited our local Lidl this morning, the large one on its own site. Sure enough, it has a new parking regime. However, it is 90 minutes free, then 90. I kept my receipt in case of a problem, having been there for maybe 15 minutes.


20th February 2016, 12:40 PM
There is no Lidl near me but quite by chance I visited a Lidl earlier in the week to kill some time while my daughter was taking her driving theory exam (she passed :)) - the Lidl in question was in Stanmore near Watford and the car park is around the back of the parade and a short walk from the store itself. I shop regularly at Aldi and I also rarely carry change (not needed at Aldi) so when I entered the car park I was surprised to see that there was a refundable car parking charge payable to an attendant. I explained I had no cash but I was still allowed to park as long as I showed the attendant my till receipt (5 minimum spend) on my return from the store. All was well. Lidl is actually surprisingly different to Aldi inside the store, but that is for a different discussion :)