These news may come as total shock to some of you, but I figure today is as good day as any to let you know that because of Antigua Guatemala’s preservation and protection laws there can not be parking meters. Believe me that’s a good thing. However the municipal government may not agree with me since that means they lose yet another way to tax us. Well, that’s how it used to be until not too long ago when a mayor realized that the city could by law charge for parking without installing the parking meters. Nevertheless, the government officials knew that they could not pass the legislation needed if they tax the people who actually live here. I know city governments all over the world do charge for public parking to its own neighbors, but trust me when I say this could not be possible in Antigua Guatemala. Thus, they created these parking permit decals for antigüeños that go on your front windshield and pretty much exempts your from having to pay the Q10 per day for parking as everyone else. Once a year you have to go to the transit or treasure department and prove that you live here by way of showing your DPI (Guatemala’s national ID) or the title of your property, the circulation cards for your vehicles and show your boleto de ornato (decoration ticket) which is a variable obligatory tax that Guatemalans must pay every year to their local municipality. Ornato is Guatemalan Spanish for the aesthetic or beauty of town or place.
And with today’s entry we begin a mini series about the parking problems of Antigua Guatemala. Each day I will bring different issues regarding the parking situation of Antigua Guatemala.
Día de la Candelaria (Candlemas) Aside: Around Antigua Guatemala, many people keep their Nacimientos and Christmas decorations until February 2nd, Día de la Candelaria (Candlemas), which incidentally is Groundhog Day in the United States. The day after February 2nd the Christmas lights around Antigua’s Main Plaza will be pick up and put away.
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