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7 Tips for Saving Money on Parking at the Airport

Updated on January 20, 2011

It is never cheap to travel by plane. Between ticket costs and baggage fees and the price of those snack boxes that they sell on the plane in place of meals now, flight travel can be really pricey. Luckily there are lots of little things that you can do to reduce the cost of traveling by plane. One of those things is to make sure that you aren’t wasting money paying exorbitant fees to park your car at the airport while you’re away.

Here are seven ways to save money on parking at the airport:

1.     Get someone to drop you off at the airport. The cheapest option for dealing with parking fees at the airport is simply to not park at the airport. Parking fees by the day are really expensive and they’re an unnecessary expense for most travelers. When you have to go to the airport, find someone who is willing to drop you off and pick you up.  That way you’ll only need to pay their in-and-out fees (usually just a few dollars) and perhaps give them some gas money for taking you to the airport. That’s a lot cheaper than the daily fees of parking your car at the airport while you’re away.

2.     Take public transportation to the airport. If you want to avoid paying to park your car at the airport but don’t want to bother anyone in your life by asking them to drop you off at the airport then consider taking public transportation to get there. Most airports have buses or other forms of public transportation that take you directly to the airport. Even if you don’t normally take public transportation, this can be a really smart money-saving alternative to parking your car at the airport during your trip. If public transportation isn’t an option then consider the similar alternative of taking a taxi to and from the airport. Although cab rides can be expensive, they still may be cheaper than parking fees especially if you’re taking a long trip and would have to leave your car at the airport for an extended period of time.

3.     Park at a nearby off-site parking lot. There are usually several privately owned parking lots outside of an airport where you can choose to park your car. These lots have shuttles that run to the airport regularly. It can still be expensive to park in these lots but it’s usually a cheaper alternative than parking in the airport parking lot. Make sure that you get to the lot early so that you don’t miss your flight if you have any shuttle delays.

4.      Park at a lot even further away. One really important thing to realize is that the further away from the airport the parking lot is the cheaper it usually will be to park there. There are lots even further away than the ones outside of the airport that will offer better rates. Most of these also offer shuttle rides or van rides to the airport although they may do so with less frequency than the lots that are located right outside of the airport. If you’re going to have to park your car for many days then you should compare the prices of all of the parking lots in the extended area around the airport.

5.      Park in the lot or garage associated with a nearby hotel. Every airport has hotels that are located in close proximity to the airport. Sometimes these hotels will make some extra money by operating parking garages or parking lots on their property. Although some of these hotels only allowing their guests to park here, others open their lots to the general public (usually for a fee). This can be less expensive than parking in other nearby lots and is usually much cheaper than parking at the airport.

6.     Park in the economy spots at the airport. If you must park at the airport for one reason or another then you should find out if there are any economy lots or economy parking spots at the airport. Many airports charge a premium rate for their most convenient parking lots and charge a lower cost for parking in the areas of the lot that are further away from the airport entrances. Also make sure that you compare the cost of parking in the long term parking lot as compared to the price of parking in the short-term lot since the long-term lot is usually cheaper per day for people who will be parked at the airport for an extended period of time.

7.     Always look for coupons, discounts and deals on parking before you head to the airport. Make sure that you do all that you can to reduce the cost of parking regardless of what lot you are parking in. Do this by doing your research online to find the lowest cost parking options. Many websites offer coupon codes and printable coupons to reduce the cost of parking at or near the airport. In some cases you can also get the cost of parking reduce or waived when you book your flight through an online search engine.

Remember that the more money that you are able to save on parking at the airport, the more money you’re going to have available to actually enjoy your vacation. Although it can seem a little bit inconvenient to park at a lot that’s far away or to take the time to find parking lot discount codes, it’s well worth the cost that it can save you.


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  • earnestshub profile image

    earnestshub 7 years ago from Melbourne Australia

    I found some new ideas here, so thank you for the hub. I am astonished by the parking fees at Melbourne airport. If you had a cheap car and stayed away a month the fees would cost more than the car's value.

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

    You have got some very good tips in your hub.

  • ocbill profile image

    ocbill 7 years ago from hopefully somewhere peaceful and nice

    All great tips I regularly use especially the further away lots.

  • Trsmd profile image

    Trsmd 7 years ago from India

    really worth tips about parking

  • wsupaul88 profile image

    wsupaul88 7 years ago from Seattle, WA

    Very helpful, I will be using some of these tips!