What is the CashKey?

The CashKey is a programmable key that provides a cashless way to pay at parking meters. The CashKey can be carried on your key chain and eliminates the need to carry coins for the meters.

CashKeys can be used at any City of Champaign, City of Urbana or University of Illinois parking meter. Each key carries three accounts (a separate one for each parking provider) and $10 to $100 of value can be purchased for use at each type of meter.

How to Use a CashKey:

The CashKey functions like an American quarter. The first time the key is inserted into a meter, the amount of value on account for that parking provider is displayed. Each subsequent time the key is inserted is like depositing a quarter into the meter providing the user with the minutes of parking in accordance with the rate posted at each meter. For example, at a $.75 per hour meter, each insertion will provide 20 minutes of time at the meter; at a $.25 per hour meter, an insertion will provide one hour worth of parking time. The CashKey will not register more than the posted time allowed for that meter, but it will continue to deduct $.25 from the account each time it’s inserted. If the key is left inserted for more than 5-seconds, the meter will flash in the out-of-order mode until the key is removed. This is to alert the user in case the CashKey is inadvertently left in the meter.

The CashKey doesn’t guarantee you a parking space. Parking meter spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The CashKey can be used in conjunction with coins.

Purchasing a CashKey and/or Time:

The initial cost of the key is $19.50 new or $10 used and $10 to $100 of time can be purchased for each parking provider. Keys and/or time can be purchased at the following locations:

  • Keys & time – City of Champaign Parking Programs Office (702 Edgebrook Dr.)
  • Keys & time – City of Champaign Finance Department (2nd floor of City Building, 102 N. Neil St.)
  • Time only – City of Urbana Finance Department (400 S. Vine St, Urbana)
  • Time only – University of Illinois Parking Department (1201 W University Ave, Urbana.)
  • Purchases must be made in person at one of the above locations. There is not an online purchase or reloading option.

If you find you aren’t using time loaded for one meter provider, the value can be transferred over to a different one.

Refund Policies:

Lost Keys:

The CashKey works the same as cash and is similar to carrying up to $300 in your pocket. If you lose your key, none of the parking offices are able to determine how much value was left on the key so no refunds are issued for lost keys.

Returned Keys:

CashKeys can be returned to any of the purchasing locations listed above and a reimbursement for the value remaining on the key will be issued to the registered owner of the key. A $10 refund will be provided for returned keys that were new when purchased as long as the key is functioning and programmable. There is no refund given for the return of CashKeys bought used.

Malfunctioning Keys:

The Parking Programs Office will replace any malfunctioning CashKey at no charge to the customer for any key returned within 90 days from the date of purchase. After the 90 day period, the customer will be required to purchase a new CashKey subject to the current purchase price. Once a replacement has been made by the City, the damaged key becomes the property of the City.

Time Remaining on Malfunctioning Keys:

Refunds for time remaining on malfunctioning keys shall be calculated according to the following guidelines:

  • 100% refund for keys purchased within 1 week of the request
  • 75% refund for keys purchased within 2 weeks of the request
  • 50% refund for keys purchased within 3 weeks of the request
  • 25% refund for keys purchased within 4 weeks of the request