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8 Out Of 10 Airports Have Increased Drop Off Charges

One of the biggest pet hates amongst UK travellers, is that while low cost airlines have driven the cost of flying down, this has not been reciprocated by the hosting airports and on fact they all getting more expensive. The RAC has picked up on the fact, that 8 out of 10 airports within the UK, have increased their “Pick Up” and “Drop Off” charges this year.

airport parking

How times have changed, there was a time when driving your vehicle to the airport to drop someone off for a flight or pick them up, was totally free, after all the flyer had paid good money to access the airport and flight. The airport operator would make their money through landing changes and the retail side of things, when passengers bought duty free or bought food and refreshments

But even though most airports are busier than ever, 8 out of 10 have increased their pick up and drop off charges, to up to £4 for a drop off.

This is what the RAC article says.

It states that Stansted and Luton are the most expensive in Britain, charging £4 for 10 and 13 minutes respectively drop off time.

Several others charge £3, but with varying times allowed, including East Midlands, Birmingham and Liverpool.

The £2 drop offs, include Newcastle and Edinburgh. But a big well done to Heathrow and Gatwick, who do not charge for drop offs.

Pick Up Location May Be Different

It gets more complicated, when comparing pick up. As we know, exact flight times and getting through security can not be predicted exactly. So either short term parking is needed or some form of waiting outside the airport has to happen, on order just to be charged that single drop off fee.

Where passengers come out of the terminal on arrivals may also be different to that of the departure, hence different car parks and costs.

Stansted for example, charges £8 for 30 minutes parking, quite shocking really when it was only £2.50 a short time ago. Other prices included, Birmingham £5.50 for an hour, East Midlands £4 for 30 minutes.

As you can see some varying prices and options at different airports, we have to assume based on availability and demand.

Do Your Research

Simon Williams from the RAC states “Doing your research on the fees charged before heading to drop off or pick up at an airport has to be the best advice”

It is difficult for the consumer to understand why these changes need to be applied except to increase profits. Retail rentals within most of these airports are at a premium and much of the seating space has been taken away form general seating and replaced with bars and retail establishments. You can understand, why visitors just don't get the charges.

One reason why high street shops are struggling versus retail parks, is being charged to park potential shoppers’, vehicles. It will cost, just to go and browse, or return something.

Airports are fortunate that they have the monopoly of a traveller needing to fly somewhere. The alternative may me a more expensive flight or a long journey to the next airport, that offers a flight to the same destination.

So it seems to the time being, we need to grit our teeth and just expect the charges and hope they do not increase next year also.