One of the biggest complaints that many students have is parking. There are parking lots all over campus, but when you factor in commuters, faculty, and residents, there just doesn't seem to be enough space to accommodate everyone who has a car. Residents often complain that commuters park in residential spaces, and vice versa, creating an endless cycle of people "stealing" spots. Within the lots, certain spaces are marked "faculty only"; Public Safety will issue a ticket to anyone parked in one of these spots (who isn't faculty) without a second thought. Some spaces, however, aren't as clearly marked, and students often complain that they have received tickets even though they weren't aware they were doing anything illegal. These tickets can usually be contested, but it's always best to make sure that there was absolutely no signage forbidding anyone from parking in one of these spots. A minor oversight just isn't worth the cost of the ticket.
If you have early classes, one of the best places to find parking is behind C.V. Starr, even though this lot tends to fill up after 10 a.m. It is close enough to most of the academic buildings—with the exception of Hagedorn—that it shouldn't be much of a problem to anyone who doesn't mind a short walk. The general consensus seems to be to park on either the north side of campus or by the sports complexes which, again, may be too far away, especially during the winter. If you're just running into a building quickly and you park in front of it, make sure you have your hazards on so Public Safety doesn't write you a ticket. Students who will be bringing a car to campus will be happy to know that the permits are free, and that first-year students are allowed to bring their cars. You just have to register the car with Public Safety and make sure the permit is visible so that it doesn't get towed or ticketed.