New study finds some parking charges have increased by 100%


According to a new study by the RAC, drivers picking up passengers from the airport are now having to pay parking charges that have increased by around 100% at a number of the busiest airports in the country.

Their research showed that eight out of the top 20 airports have increased their pick-up charges in 2017, whilst some airports have brought in tariffs for the first time.

The airport charging motorists the most was London Luton at £7 for a 40 minute stay, with London Stansted following closely behind at £5 for 30 minutes, whilst at Birmingham the fee is £4.90 for a one hour stay.

New study finds some parking charges have increased by 100%

Airports across the UK hike prices for collecting and dropping off passengers © Copyright Alex McGregor and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


A total of five airports in the UK have also hiked up charges for drop-offs too.

The highest drop-off fee is at London Stansted – just 10 minutes to drop someone off to catch a flight will cost motorists £3.50, which is 50p more than what London Luton charge for the same time of 10 minutes.

The third most expensive airport is Liverpool John Lennon at £3 for 20 minutes, however they do provide a secondary drop-off area that’s just a short walk away and costs nothing.

According to the RAC spokesman Simon Williams, motorists will see these increases as ‘another way of making money out of them’ and warned anyone dropping off or picking up family and friends at the airport to check in advance what the charges are ‘or be prepared for an unpleasant shock’.

“Drop-off charges are the biggest bone of contention as for many they appear severe when they are simply pulling up for less than five minutes and often don’t even get out of the car themselves,” added Mr Williams.

Seven airports in the UK do however provide free drop-off parking – Belfast City, Cardiff, Jersey, Manchester, London City, London Gatwick and London Heathrow.

The Airport Operators Association’s spokesman said that income made from parking goes towards investment in facilities and ‘allows airports to keep charges to airlines low, benefiting travellers through lower air fares’.

He also added that airports provide clear information about parking costs so passengers are well aware of the fees and have the option to choose other modes of transport to get there.

According to the spokesman, drop-off charges are set for a number of reasons, including to regulate congestion.


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