Parking spaces in your church parking lot are a lot like the chairs in your auditorium. There is a fine line between having too many empty ones and having none available (or viewable). As your church starts to grow and you begin getting visitors every weekend, your parking situation needs to be a key consideration. If visitors feel that finding a parking space is too hard, they will turn around and leave. You need to make it as easy as possible for your visitors to park and get into church in time for services.
Creating an Efficient Church Parking Lot
- Set up a special parking area just for visitors. Make it viewable from the driveway. If it’s not viewable, banners and signs should be used to point the way.
- Start a parking lot ministry. Ask volunteers to greet and direct traffic during high volume times. Purchase safety vests or bright colored volunteer t-shirts to be sure your team is visible. (Get custom t-shirts with your church name or logo.)
- Ask staff, ministry team members, worship team members and regular attenders to park in less convenient spaces. Leave the “prime” spots for visitors, the elderly, expectant mothers or families with young children. Promote this policy in your announcements and bulletins.
- If your parking lot is going to consistently be too small, ask local businesses nearby if you can use their parking area on Sunday mornings when they are likely not open.
- Set up a drop-off zone so only the driver has to walk from a parking location that is further away. Be sure to have greeters available to assist the elderly into church.
Through following these simple steps, you can make it simple for visitors to find a place to park—and take one barrier out of the way of new people coming to your church!