NEW ORLEANS -- No more fumbling around for loose change. Most parking meters in New Orleans will now take a payment over the phone.
Tuesday, the city started taking payments using the new Park Mobile smart phone app.
"Over the last few days, we transitioned to a pay-by-phone provider that will allow citizens to either call in and pay through the service and or to use the app on their phone to pay," said city spokeswoman Garnesha Crawford.
The city's older pay by phone app no longer works. The whole system was down since Friday.
That caught some users like Lorin Gaudin by surprise.
"I went up to the actual meter itself and looked at the tag and noticed that there was a whole new app that no one seemed to no about," said Gaudin. "I sure didn't know about it."
The social media entrepreneur says she tried to use the new app on Monday, it took her money, but parking enforcement was still about to give her a ticket.
"How is it possible that the city can have in place a new system that's live that works from a user end, but the enforcement people don't have access?" said Gaudin.
Crawford said it took several days to install the new service, but the park mobile system is now up and running.
"If citizens are having any trouble, they can go to the Park Mobile website to make sure their registration is complete," she said. "Citywide, we will transition for all of our parking meters by the end of the year."
The city's new parking app is relatively easy to get. All you have to do is go to www.parkmobile.com or go to the app store on your phone. You can also capture the QR code on the side of a parking kiosk.
Despite her problem with the system, Gaudin said she still likes the app.
"I loaded it. It took no time at all. It's fast. It's efficient. It's secure. It's phenomenal. Yes I am a digital person. I think it's fantastic."
The city is also installing new solar powered parking meters in the downtown area.