by Sharon Hurley Hall
If you’re planning a holiday getaway, don’t forget about airport parking. Travelers who neglect this part of travel planning until the last minute often pay the price – literally! Making airport parking reservations is just as important as taking care of other travel arrangements – and you don’t want to leave it to chance. Here are five tips on getting the best deals on airport parking.
1. Avoid the Airport
This may seem like a strange piece of advice, but one of the best ways to save money on airport parking is to avoid the airport. Airport parking lots can be expensive, so unless you have absolutely no choice, don’t park there. A recent survey by the UK’s Travel Supermarket found that parking off airport could result in savings of 572% across an 8 day stay.
Another disadvantage of airport parking lots is the amount of time you waste driving around looking for a space and then lugging your cases to the nearest pickup point. Why risk missing your flight when there’s a much better option?
2. Choose Off Airport Parking
This goes hand in hand with the previous tip. Off airport parking lots are usually located at suitable distances from airports and the process is much easier than at the airport. All you do is drive in, hand your car over and board a shuttle to your terminal – you even get help with your bags. Best of all, this option will cost much less per day than parking at the airport – the potential savings are huge! You’ll also have peace of mind, as there’s usually security in place to make sure your car is safe. One tip: check the actual location of the parking lot before making your reservation so you can be sure it’s as convenient as you need it to be.
3. Book Online
While you can turn up and park at an offsite airport parking lot, you will save even more if you book in advance online. Most providers offer discounts for online booking and it makes the whole arrival and departure process much more convenient too. While you’re on the site, look out for coupons. Your local off airport parking provider might also have a promotion in local media channels so don’t forget to check out local advertising for additional savings.
4. Double Dip
Points – don’t we just love ’em? Since airport parking providers often team up with other travel industry professionals, you might be able to score additional savings via your existing points schemes. Perhaps you can save on airport parking by paying with a particular credit card, while still earning points for what you spend. Check out your airport parking provider’s website to see who the company partners with in order to make additional savings.
5. Check for Rewards
If you’re a regular traveler, then it makes sense to join the rewards scheme for your local offsite airport parking provider. Once you’ve been a member for a while, you’ll be able to get additional services (think warming or cooling your car before pickup, a valet service, car wash or free parking days) which will help you to get more bang for your buck. You won’t have to pay for them and they will make your travel experience much more enjoyable.
Follow these tips and you’ll get to have a great airport parking experience at an affordable price.
Sharon Hurley Hall is a professional writer and blogger who runs the Taking Off Travel Blog for off airport parking provider Park Ride Fly USA.