Have moved this OP from the "Voice Your Choice" section. It is copy/pasted exactly as it was from here:
This is not a choice of a consumable ITEM issue, but a choice of a PLACE where we spend more than a quarter of our disposable income each week.
I am speaking about Supermarket car parks.
We do not own a 4WD vehicle - we had a nice one in the past and enjoyed using it (real estate sales in a Queensland country town).
Today, when we go to shop in Coles or Woolworths car parks, we have the frustration of having to find a car park that is not right beside or in between one or two 4WD's.
Why is this an issue for me? Three reasons:
- After I have put the groceries in the car, I have difficulty backing safely out of the car park space, when my vision is obscured by the elevated back end of a 4WD vehicle.
- The doors on 4WD's are on average much bigger than the doors on a small sedan. So when the owner returns to his 4WD, it is difficult for him/her to open the door without that door contacting the paintwork of the vehicle beside them.
- Some 4WD owners have cashed in the super, and opted for the "big, safe" vehicle, which they sometimes have difficulty manoeuvering into tight parking spaces. The vehicle is simply too big for them to manage, though some will surely contest this. I am speaking of a very small minoritry here - but these are the ones who come under notice when they get into a tight spot. This can result in a poorly parked vehicle, and if they park after I have, then at times they are so close to my vehicle, that either myself or my wife has difficulty getting into ours.
On the flip side of this, owners of 4WD must also be frustrated that the available carparks are too tight to accommodate their naturally larger vehicle.
This is even more pronounced when a smaller vehicle is badly parked, making it even more difficult for the 4WD to park.
And let's face it - smaller vehicle owners can be even more lazy or incompetent in their parking abilities than any 4WD owners - facts of life.
I am not picking on 4WD owners and drivers - they have the same rights as I have.
But in order to improve the experience of all shoppers, I believe it is time to begin segregating the types of vehicles that may park in designated areas.
To begin with, the major supermarkets need to do some surveys to arrive at a rough estimate of the numbers of smaller and 4WD's that patronise their businesses.
Then they should consider separating the parking allocation areas roughly in those proportions, ensuring that both parking areas have equally close access to the front doors of their supermarkets. It would not be fair to force either party to park further away than the other. And it should not be permissable for small vehicle owners to use the larger spaces that are (or hopefully will be) provided for the larger 4WD's.
This would instantly improve the shopping experiences of both types of vehicle owners.
Currently Woolworths have much larger car park spaces per vehicle than do Coles.But that is immaterial to this issue, and just my opinion from where I live.
And let's not forget Bunnings - very tight car parking spaces in my experience.
What is needed is a change of attitude by the major supermarkets/stores, so that they begin to care about how their clients are feeling about "doing the shopping."
We know that on "pension day" we need to avoid Coles in the mornings, and instead go to the larger carpark offered by Woollies if we need anything.
Better to plan ahead, and know when it is "safe" to shop
Similarly, we avoid the "after school" rush, when carparks fill up again.
But I'd like to hear a bit of feedback from people who have the same problems - damaged paintwork from the door of a 4WD and vice versa (or other vehicle in a tight car parking space). And difficulty getting the groceries into the car (and yourself) after a big vehicle (or small) has parked up beside you, snaffling what space was available.
I would also like good feedback (is there any other kind) from 4WD owners, so that I can understand how they are feeling about all of this too.
Do 4WD owners also get frustrated by paint damage caused by the owner of a smller vehicle trying to extricate themselves from a tight car park space?
This is not an "us and them" issue - we are all entitled to take whatever vehicles we choose to own, to any designated car park.
And I'd like to know both sides of the story. Maybe you can also help me with other factlets surrounding these issues.
I will then compile a letter to both Supermarket head offices, (and perhaps other stores) and ask for their understanding, co-operation and certainly action on this issue.
Your feedback will allow me to fairly present both sides of the story. And I am certain many of us have an opinion and an experience on this.
As consumers, we need choice in where we get the best shopping experience - not only in the price and quality of groceries, but also in how much the supermarkets respect the value of our vehicles.
Ivan Ballin ( Ingot54 at gmail dot com )