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Cornell University

Virtual Permits

Your License Plate is Your Permit!

Transportation Services is implementing a campus-wide virtual permit system using the vehicle license plate as the parking credential. Unless notified, there is no hangtag to display, your license plate is used to verify your parking privileges.

Moving to virtual permitting has the side benefit of furthering university fiscal responsibility and sustainability goals by reducing the amount of plastic and paper used to create hangtags, reducing staff labor costs, and eliminating the need to mail the permits.

Please note the instructions below pertain only to individual employee and student permits; university-owned vehicle permits and permits paid via department accounts cannot use the portal to make a permit request.

Getting Started (eligible employees and students)

  1. Register or Update Your Vehicle All Cornell University community members must register their vehicle(s) with Transportation Services for parking on campus.
  2. Link your registered vehicle(s) to your current parking permit, or use the Get Permits button to obtain a new permit (options will vary based on eligibility rules). All permits, both virtual and physical hangtags, must be linked to at least one vehicle.

Students living on campus are eligible for the virtual permit in their residence location. All other students are eligible for the commuter virtual permit. 

Eligible employees with a Cornell NetID can order an A (North Campus A Lot) or E (E areas; work location requirements must be met) permit using the parking portal at You'll be required to register and link at least one of your vehicles to the virtual permit.

To register your vehicle and obtain a permit, log into your account and follow the instructions. Once a virtual permit is issued, a confirmation receipt will be emailed notifying you that the permit is now active. Vehicle information can be updated at at any time.

Can't access the portal or the permit you want? Please use the Permit Request Form.


  • A vehicle must be registered with the University and be linked to your parking permit before parking on campus.
  • Vehicle information must be kept current. Visit to review and update your information.
  • A vehicle can only be listed on one permit.
  • Commuter permits can have up to two vehicles listed on the permit.
  • Residential permit can only have one vehicle listed on the permit.
  • Only one vehicle per permit may park in the associated permit area. While you are able to link multiple vehicles to a permit, only one may be parked in the permit area during any calendar day, unless each car has its own permit for the lot.
  • You are not permitted to register another community member's car, or a loaner or rental vehicle. Please contact us if you need to park with a vehicle you cannot add to your permit.
  • Vehicles must be parked so that a license plate is viewable from the driving lane. For vehicles registered in states that do not issue front plates (i.e. Pennsylvania), this typically means the vehicle will need to be parked “nose-in”.
  • License plates must be readable. Devices that cover or obstruct a license plate are illegal in New York State (NY V&T § 402 (b)). The presence of such devices may result in the issuance of a citation.  
  • Vehicles registered in New York: the New York Department of Motor Vehicles has acknowledged that some older license plates are susceptible to “delamination (peeling) of their printed coating”.  Replacements for license plates experiencing this issue may be obtained free of charge. More information is located at
  • E permit worksites: Hurlburt House, Africana Center, Print Services, Schuyler/Sage House, Solidago Complex.
  • North Campus A Lot: Permit limited to commuting employees (not an employee resident of campus housing).

Virtual Permits FAQ

How do I know my virtual permit is active?

If you used the parking portal to make your permit request, you will receive an email notification confirming your permit is active. If you submitted a paper or web form request to Transportation Services, you will receive an email notification when the transaction is processed.

If you have a Cornell NetID and password, just visit to check the status of your permit. You can also add and update vehicle information.

How do I return or cancel my permit?

Contact Us to deactivate your permit if you no longer need it or are leaving university employment.

Will I receive a renewal form?

Permit holders eligible to use the online portal will receive an email with instructions; all others receive a renewal form in the mail. Do not forward or share renewal notifications, as they are specific to the permit holder.

How do I add/update vehicle information?

To register and update vehicle information online, have the plate number, make, style, color, and year of the vehicle, as well as the name of the vehicle's owner. Do not register rental or loaner vehicles, or vehicles belonging to other Cornell community members. If you need assistance, contact us.

What is your LPR privacy policy?

License Plate Recognition (LPR) is a technology that uses optical character recognition to automatically read license plate characters. Cornell University Transportation Services utilizes license plate recognition hardware and software for parking enforcement and facility occupancy data.

The intended use of data collected by the LPR system is for parking lot occupancy counts to measure parking demand, and parking permit and mobile payment enforcement. LPR data can be used to determine a vehicle’s access permissions in a parking area and support the issuance of a parking citation if needed.

Access to records created and maintained by the LPR system is restricted to trained designated Transportation Services personnel. All personnel with access to the system use unique identifiers and passwords to access records and all login, record additions, and other activity is logged. Access to the system by others is prohibited. Designated personnel must gain approval from the Senior Director of Transportation Services.

LPR “HITS” that result in a citation are kept for 90 days; LPR “READS” that do not result in enforcement action are kept for 30 days.