Crazy Airport Parking Rates

Travel Forums Off Topic Crazy Airport Parking Rates

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61. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 2539 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

The sort of 'ride service' where people meet clients with their names on boards exists here too. Depending on the contract the service has with the airport (or lack of contract) the vehicle either parks in the charged drop-off or in the on-airport taxi stand.

Newquay (a very small airport) still offers free drop-off/pick up max 30 minutes but the parking is not directly outside the terminal. As you say, there's a walk involved but the disabled parking spaces are the nearest to the terminal. That's pretty-much the same as the free options offered by other airports I've mentioned before, except that in most cases passengers have the option of a shuttle bus as well as walking.

[ Edit: Edited on 22-Aug-2019, 17:42 GMT by leics2 ]

62. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 1923 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting leics2

The sort of 'ride service' where people meet clients with their names on boards exists here too. Depending on the contract the service has with the airport (or lack of contract) the vehicle either parks in the charged drop-off or in the on-airport taxi stand.

Newquay (a very small airport) still offers free drop-off/pick up max 30 minutes but the parking is not directly outside the terminal. As you say, there's a walk involved but the disabled parking spaces are the nearest to the terminal. That's pretty-much the same as the free options offered by other airports I've mentioned before, except that in most cases passengers have the option of a shuttle bus as well as walking.

Europe and Africa are the only places I've used such a service, and I have only done it for about 5 years - just since I started using a mobility scooter. I haven't ever done it here in the US - most of the time here either family picks us up, we just get a taxi or we take a shuttle to a hotel or car rental.

63. Posted by road to roam (Travel Guru 1048 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Do some port authorities in the UK own, maintain and operate the free transport to the terminals and do some port authorities contract that transport out to other groups? Just wondering.

64. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 2539 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

We don't have 'port authorities' as such. Each airport is its own entity, as it were (UK airports were privatised in 1986), though obviously they work within all the relevant UK, EU and international laws.

It depends on the airport but, in general, UK airports either operate the shuttle buses for their own on-airport parking or, if that parking is operated by e.g. NCP (a huge UK parking company), that operator runs the shuttles too. Shuttles generally operate to a timetable but, in my experience at various airports, the wait is never more than 20 minutes or so and very often less. Obviously, the smaller airports (e.g. Belfast City, Newquay) don't have or need shuttle buses for their on-airport car parks.

There are also lots of privately-operated off-airport car parks which all include transport to and from the terminals by shuttle bus or minibus (rather like the shuttles which run to and from off-airport hotels and car rental lots at US airports). From my own experience at various UK airports, private shuttles run by demand rather than to a set timetable. But (again, from my experience) you don't have to wait long (if at all) for a shuttle to the terminal, You usually phone for the return once you're landside and they turn up pretty quickly.

There are 'meet and greet' services too: you are met by a driver who takes your car and parks it for you then, on your return, returns the car to you at the airport drop-off (charged or otherwise). That's more expensive than just parking your car yourself (on or off airport) and using the shuttle buses.

Birmingham airport also has a free, automatic monorail which runs every few minutes from the railway station to the terminal. I think the airport owns and operates that too.

[ Edit: Edited on 22-Aug-2019, 19:11 GMT by leics2 ]

65. Posted by road to roam (Travel Guru 1048 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting leics2

It depends on the airport but, in general, UK airports either operate the shuttle buses for their own on-airport parking or, if that parking is operated by e.g. NCP (a huge UK parking company), that operator runs the shuttles too. Shuttles generally operate to a timetable but, in my experience at various airports, the wait is never more than 20 minutes or so and very often less. Obviously, the smaller airports (e.g. Belfast City, Newquay) don't have or need shuttle buses for their on-airport car parks.

I was too vague with my question.....sorry.

As for the free terminal transport, I meant from the free drop areas only, not the the rest of the car parks or off-site car parks. Who shuttles passengers dropped off in the "Free Zones" to the terminals?

[ Edit: Edited on 22-Aug-2019, 19:50 GMT by road to roam ]

66. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 2539 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

No probs. Think I understand what you're asking now.

>Who shuttles passengers dropped off in the "Free Zones" to the terminals?

Free drop-off are in one or more of the ordinary on-airport car parks. If you enter and exit again within e.g 15 or 30 minutes (it varies from airport to airport) you don't have to pay. Passengers can then use the free shuttle buses (operated by the airport or by NCP) and in some airports it's also easy to walk. For example, it's 5 to max 10 minutes walk (mostly downhill) to the terminal from Birmingham's free drop-off car park. Oh-and there are bus shelters in the car parks, with shuttles following a set route around them. You're not expected to walk to just one stop or wait in the rain! :-)

[ Edit: Edited on 22-Aug-2019, 20:15 GMT by leics2 ]

67. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1590 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting leics2

>You also keep mentioning that this works as a security measure.

The security element is that at-terminal charges reduce the number of vehicles coming close to the terminal + pedestrian areas and also reduce traffic congestion within that area (taxis, buses, coaches, cars using other on-airport parking). Apart from the Glasgow airport terrorist ramming, the UK has experienced many car bombs etc over the decades and security issues do have a high profile. UK airports are the only place in the country where there are armed police on patrol as a norm.

Thanks for this I see where I was confused. When you said security measure I was thinking preventative security, that somehow paid parking was going to dissuade terrorists from attacking and I was struggling to understand how that was possible. What you are describing is harm minimisation so the reduction of casualties in the event of an attack which makes much more sense (talk about a face palm moment). Though it does make me wonder if security is such a priority do they have any methods (preventative or harm minimising) for the people on the free shuttles?

68. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 2539 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

A reduction in vehicle numbers makes it easier for vehicles to be monitored (on-site staff & police, ANPR & CCTV cameras) and suspicious behaviour to be noticed.

A car bomb in an on-airport car park some distance from the terminal would cause minimal or no harm to humans. A car bomb directly outside the terminal would be devastating. It isn't feasible to completely ban private cars from the terminal area isn't but taking steps to reduce their numbers reduces the risk.

>do they have any methods (preventative or harm minimising) for the people on the free shuttles?

No more than on any UK bus. The vast majority of UK buses (local or otherwise) have radio contact with control and CCTV and I assume free shuttles have those too. You don't have to show ID or scan your bags (which go inside the bus, not in a hold) ........ though of course there's no way of knowing if undercover operatives are present. :-)

[ Edit: Edited on 23-Aug-2019, 06:38 GMT by leics2 ]

69. Posted by road to roam (Travel Guru 1048 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

Quoting leics2

UK airports are the only place in the country where there are armed police on patrol as a norm.

Is the CNC routinely armed while on patrol, or has that changed? They aren't at airports of course, but they are police.

[ Edit: Edited on 23-Aug-2019, 12:33 GMT by road to roam ]

70. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 2539 posts) 1y Star this if you like it!

>Is the CNC routinely armed while on patrol, or has that changed?

CNC? Civil Nuclear Constabulary? Had to look that one up! Apparently, most of its officers are authorised to carry firearms and, according to wiki, they carry arms when patrolling a few specific nuclear sites (and only within 5km of that site ). Having (like the vast majority of the UK population) never been anywhere near any of those sites..or been interested in doing so... I wasn't even aware of their existence as a specialist police force, let alone that it was regularly armed Hence my comment about airports being the only places you'll regularly see armed officers on patrol. :-)

All UK police forces have firearms units made up of highly-trained officers, but they only carry arms after receiving specific authorisation related to a particular job/task and only for the period of time required for that job/task. Guns are taken and returned to a central store. Firearms officers never patrol with arms. That also applies to specialist counter-terrorist officers: guns are issued for specific purposes, not carried as a norm.

A very few high-security places e.g Houses of Parliament & Downing Street almost certainly always have armed officers present, but they are rarely visible (you'll just see ordinary police officers manning the HoP car park gates). I'd expect at least some of the security officers who look after the Royals and the highest-profile MPs to concealed-carry but, obviously, exactly what, when, who and where is not in the public domain.

The guards at Buckingham Palace carry guns but afaik those guns aren't loaded. The same applies to any group of soldiers marching in public. Their guns are only loaded on ranges and for exercise purposes in non-public areas.

[ Edit: Edited on 23-Aug-2019, 12:57 GMT by leics2 ]