Information for Parents of Students

Freshmen/Sophomore Parking Prohibition
First and second-year students with less than 90 units that reside in University housing facilities, including University Town Center, are not eligible to purchase a permit (except motorcycle permits) to park on-campus. Detailed information is available on the Residential Freshmen/Sophomore Parking Prohibition page. Also see the Determining Undergraduate Student Parking Permit Eligibility section below.

Leave the Car at Home
Because parking is such a limited resource at UCSC, it is strongly recommended that students who are not eligible to purchase an on–campus parking permit not bring vehicles to Santa Cruz. Residential streets near campus and in downtown Santa Cruz have strictly enforced parking permit requirements managed by the City of Santa Cruz Permit Parking Program.

Off-campus paid parking options are extremely limited, and usually sell out by mid-September. Detailed information is available on the Off-campus Parking Lots page.

Determining Undergraduate Student Parking Permit Eligibility Status for 2021-2022
Permit eligibility status for residential students is determined by the number of units (90 units) completed by Fall of the current academic year. This status remains in place and does not change throughout the academic year. Residential students who have completed less than 90 units or achieve this threshold by Winter or Spring are ineligible for parking, including day passes, but may pursue parking through an appeal process. 

All commuting students, and residential juniors and seniors, are eligible to apply for a campus parking permit, but there is no guarantee of a permit as they sell out quickly.

Move In Parking
All new student residents should receive instructions from their colleges about their Move In day process. Please read that information for details about your assigned Move In time. When you arrive at the Move In staging area for your campus residence there will be college staff present who will give you a “Move In Unloading Pass” to serve as both a temporary parking pass to allow you to unload vehicles near dorms, and a remote parking permit for your assigned Move In day only. This “Move In Unloading Pass” is only valid in parking lots posted “Move In." After Move In weekend is over, these passes will no longer be valid. Do not contact TAPS regarding Move In parking passes; contact your college (i.e. Porter, Merrill, Kresge, etc).

Airport Shuttle Information
Detailed information on airport shuttles that offer service to and from UC Santa Cruz is available on the Airport Shuttles page.

Public Transportation to Bay Area Airports
Detailed instructions on how to use public transportation connections to get to and from airports within a 100 mile radius of Santa Cruz is available on the Airport Public Transportation page.

Visitor Parking
Visitors may purchase one-day temporary parking permits at the Main Entrance Kiosk (located just inside the campus main entrance) from 7:00am to 1:00pm on weekdays. From 1:00pm to 5:00pm permits must be purchased at the TAPS Sales Office. One-Day temporary permits cost $10; One-Night parking permits cost $5. Visitors that want to purchase temporary permits for more than one day, for up to a maximum of three consecutive days, must do so at the TAPS Sales Office. Sales Office hours are 7:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday. A picture ID is required at the time of purchase. Information about weekend parking is available at parking/park-for-free. If you have questions about visitor parking email

Commencement Parking
Each graduate receives two commencement parking passes (general or disabled) from their college or celebration, as well as specific information about the location and time of their ceremony. Do not contact TAPS regarding commencement parking passes; contact your student's college (i.e. Porter, Merrill, Kresge, etc).

Commencement ceremonies take place at either the Quarry Amphitheater or the East Field. The location of your ceremony will be designated on your parking passes by either a large Q (for Quarry) or E (for East Field.) When you get to campus, follow the signs for your commencement location. 

See Also