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You can also avoid a lot of stress by parking at the West Ocean City Park and Ride lot in West Ocean City. It's only $1.00 to park your car and ride the shuttle to the beach. Here's the info on Park and Ride. http://oceancitymd.gov/Public_Works/inlet_parking.html
You may park for free at the park and ride just outside of Ocean City and take a shuttle in.
You can park at the convention center for free on 40th St and ride the bus around.
Or you can park on the many non metered side streets for free.
The Inlet Parking lot is the easiest and most convenient choice - southern most end of Coastal Highway. There are several public lots from Somerset to 4th Street - these are right off Coastal Highway. There is free parking on many side streets near the Boardwalk as well. This will put you about 4 blocks from the beach.
Have a fun day in OC!
Have a great trip!