Is It Legal To Sleep In Your Car?

Wondering sleeping in a car overnight is illegal or not

When you have a feeling of being dizzy, you are advised not to take a nap in your car because this may be a dangerous act.

Sleeping in your vehicle is not illegal, but when you do it, you should take all the necessary precautions.

You should also ask yourself whether the location where you have pulled over to take a nap is not against the act.

For instance, some locations in different states are against sleeping in the car, some of the cities include this article will concentrate on whether it is illegal to sleep in your car are:

  1. Florida
  2. Georgia
  3. North Carolina
  4. Tennessee

Therefore, you can sleep in your car because no law prohibits you from doing that.

It would be best if you always were careful in which area you are sleeping since some areas are against the act and always remember to be cautious once you decide that you want to sleep in your car.

You Should Be Cautious When Sleeping In Your Car In The Following States

It is usual for you to have a dizzy head and want to catch some Z’s before continuing with your journey. Even though no law prohibits you from taking that rest in your car.

In the following cities, you should be careful if you are in one of them, and you want to take some winks in your vehicle.

1. Florida

In case you were having a long trip and happened to be in this sunshine city, you could be drowsy and feel like you need to rest.

If that’s the case, it is better that you have a lodging plan.

In Florida, some parts, for example, keys announced it is illegal snoozing in your car, and this is because the highway authorities do not encourage pulling over and sleeping in your vehicle.

After all, the place is a reserve for emergency cases and crashed vehicles.

2. Georgia

Resembling the laws of Florida, highway shoulders are off bounds when it comes to pulling over and dozing.

They are reserved for emergency cases, and therefore if you are looking for a place to pull over, be sure that you are not trespassing or pulling somewhere you shouldn’t.

Whether you are sleeping or not. Despite these measures, there is no law that states’ sleeping in your car in Georgia is illegal.

3. North Carolina

Not only is sleeping in your car prohibited in North Carolina but also South Carolina.

In case you pull over to take a rest, keep in mind that you have a maximum of four hours, and honestly, this will not give you ample time for you to take a good rest.

When you are in the cities of Carolina, it is difficult for you to stay parked for a long time, and if you are not caught, you will be told to continue with your journey.

4. Tennessee

This is the state with the most limited amount of allowance time given to anyone to pull over and rest.

In Tennessee, camping and overnight parking are not tolerated, and this means that it will be tough for you if you are that kind of sleepy person.

To see the toughness in this city, you cannot sleep in your car if you are in public or private property.

How About Sleeping In Your Car Overnight At Some Other Places Illegal?

No law will charge you for sleeping in your car so long as you are not trespassing or actively sleeping.

Below are places that you should consider when sleeping in your car:

Is Sleeping In Your Neighborhood Illegal?

After the research was done and it was realized that most of the people live in their vehicles that are parked in the neighborhood streets during the night.

Most cities banned drivers and anyone from sleeping in their car on residential streets between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. it was ascertained that sleeping near schools and parks is illegal.

Can You Get In Trouble For Sleeping In Your Car In A Parking Lot?

When you are on a long road trip, you could feel dizzy and decide to sleep, but be cautious because some states are against sleeping in your car.

Consider sleeping in a hotel, and if you don’t have enough cash for booking a room in a hotel, feel free to sleep in your car in a retail parking lot or even truck stops.

1. Walmart Parking Lot

People are welcome to have stay overnight at Walmart parking lot because it is cheap.

Still, once you are there, you are requested to behave since the retailers in Walmart are forced to restrict overnight parking because some people are disrespectful.

Once you park in Walmart for an overnight, ensure you behave.

2. Costco Parking Lot

No, it is not illegal to park your car at Costco overnight.

Even though you are allowed to park your vehicle, you are advised to park far away from the shop so that customers have space to park closer.

Only a minority of the Costco does not allow parking at their stores overnight.

3. Target Parking Lot

It is not actually illegal to sleep in your car because no law states one shouldn’t do so.

You cannot park your car for an overnight sleep at Target Parking Lot because the business does not have an official overnight parking policy despite their ample parking space.

4. Home Depot Parking Lot

When considering a Home Depot for your overnight, keep in mind that they don’t have the policy to allow you park your vehicle overnight and this has changed because the depots have sold off the portions that have not been used to small retailers and this has made many Home Depots have a small space for you to park your car because the area is congested.

5. Lowes Parking Lot

When you hit the road and feel like having a rest over the night, assuming that you are at Lowes, it is useful to check with the manager and see if they allow you to sleep in your car over the night.

After you are allowed, you should behave yourself and thank you to the management for allowing you to park for free for an overnight in their lot.

6. Hotel Parking Lot

Even though it is not illegal to sleep in your car, you should not risk sleeping in the hotel parking lots without permission because, typically, hotel parking lots are private property.

If you sleep there, you could be charged for trespassing, or the management may kick you out the lot if you are found sleeping there without paying for a room.

7. Churches Parking Lot

A church parking lot is private property, and if you park your vehicle overnight, charges may apply, or you can receive a warning because they can be a little understanding.

After all, overnight parking is not encouraged in many areas.

What Are The Reasons Why People Sleep In Their Cars?

Because of different reasons that one cannot overcome, they are forced to sleep in their car and some of the reasons are highlighted below:

  • If you have a cumbersome work schedule: You will prefer to sleep in your car rather than go home for a rest.
  • In the case of college students: They prefer sleeping in their vehicle because the tuition fee and other school expenses may be hard for them to acquire; thus, they are not at the point of affording the right house for the student to stay.
  • In some states: The cost of paying for a real estate for some families is a big task, and therefore they prefer living in a vehicle rather than an estate, which is hard for them to afford.
  • If a person has a tight budget and they are traveling: They will prefer sleeping in their vehicle rather than sleeping in a hotel room.

Is It Safe To Sleep In A Car?

There are many dangers of sleeping in your vehicle, and if you really feel like spending a night in your vehicle, it is better if you do not sleep in a deserted place.

Sleep near Walmarts or in church parking lots, and always remember to be cautious of anything that may endanger you.

10 Tips On How To Sleep Safely In Your Car

After you find a safe location to park you’re your car and spend a night in it, it is good that you keep yourself warm by following the tips listed below.

Before you lay your head, MAKE SURE YOUR DOORS ARE LOCKED!

  1. Make a comfortable bed that will keep you warm.
  2. Make sure you find an excellent place to park your vehicle because if you park in some areas where you shouldn’t, you may be charged for trespassing.
  3. Have a few gadgets that will keep you entertained.
  4. Ensure that your engine is turned off.
  5. Ensure your windows are slightly open to allow air circulation so that you cannot suffocate in the vehicle.
  6. Make sure you curtain your windows for privacy.
  7. Ensure that the area in which you have parked your car is not against sleeping in the vehicle.
  8. Always be prepared with a short story in case you are forced to get the authorities.
  9. Visit the bathroom before you settle for the night in your car.
  10. According to what location you took the rest, consider the time you will be awake.

Can Your Oxygen Be Depleted While Sleeping In The Car?

Even though cars are not airtight even when you completely close your windows, you should open the window a crack so that you do not suffer from oxygen depression, which will make you fatigued.

Sleeping in your car with the windows completely closed may not kill you, but it is not advisable to do so.

Can You Sleep In A Car While The Engine Is Running? What Are The Dangers?

It is not right if you sleep in your car while the engine is running, and the AC turned on because the engine fumes will enter the cabin, and as a result, carbon monoxide, which is odorless, will fill your cabin and chances of dying are high.


Sleeping in your car may be a shortcut to saving a few dollars rather than getting a room for spending a night.

It would be best if you remembered sleeping not only saves you money but may lead you into problems in cases where you park your vehicle where you are not supposed to.

Always be cautious when selecting an area to spend the night in your car.


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Written by Kane Dan

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