United Kingdom

Different Types of Airport Parking

We parked our truck at a lot near Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport for 2 months when we were in the UK. The neighbourhood was not the best, the parking lot was uncovered and our battery was dead when we finally got back to it in early June. The truck had sat in the hot sun, (an average of 100 degrees Fahrenheit and up) and we felt like there must have been a better option out there.

The truck batteries had gone through high and low temperatures for 72 days and were completely drained. A man who worked at the lot came over with a jump box, giving us only one shot at a jump for some reason, and with a low powered device. The truck started and ran for a bout 15 seconds when the man removed the jump box, immediately killing the truck. The truck needed a serious charge not a jump from a handheld device.  He shrugged and went back to the office, I guess you can’t blame him for not wanting to hang out in 111 degree heat when he was informed we didn’t have any American cash for a tip.


We had no choice but to call our insurance and wait for a mobile mechanic.  We had already been on a plane for 10  hours, in airports for 3 or 4 hours and we had a lot of driving head of us the next day. We went to the lobby of the parking lot/travel planning office and awkwardly waited about half an hour before someone showed up. He also had a jump box and gave it a shot as well, though we kept saying it had been tried and we needed a proper charge and jump from a running vehicle. He didn’t even have jumper cables, even knowing why he had been sent by the insurance, but the prepared people we are, we had a set and after a few minutes of charging the truck was able to keep itself running. Although tired and hungry, we drove around Phoenix for an hour, doing loops on the freeways in the areas, charging up the battery so we wouldn’t find it dead in the morning.

Had we been looking for parking in the UK it seems like there might have been better parking choices – we also should have disconnected our batteries and looked harder for a better parking lot, even if it costed more it may have meant better service and shelter from the elements.

UK Parking

Wherever you need to get to, whether you need Glasgow, Bristol or Gatwick Airport parking, virtually all airports have the same types of car parking – and they can usually all be booked online too. Here are some of the most popular airport parking facilities found at airports around the country:

On-site Parking

On-site parking can be within a multi-storey, underground or open-air car park. Some are within walking distance of the main terminal and as such, these are usually priced at a premium. Space is limited, in demand and quickly fills up, so be sure to book as early as possible if you want to secure on-site parking that’s close to the terminal. In larger airports, on-site parking is also available that’s slightly further away from the terminal building. These car parks generally include a free shuttle service that transports customers and suitcases to and from the terminal.

Off-site Parking

This is one of the cheapest methods of airport parking as it involves parking at a location outside of the terminal grounds. Most locations offer a good standard of parking with appropriate security, and typically provide a shuttle service to and from the airport as part of the booking cost. Most locations are approximately 10-20 minutes away, which makes this a cost-effective option. Additional savings are usually available if you book in advance and take advantage of early bird booking discounts.

Convenience Services

Many on and off-site airport parking operators now offer convenience services, like Valet Parking or Meet and Greet parking. This means that you are met at the airport, either to drop off or collect your car – or both – which saves you the hassle of finding a parking space and taking shuttle buses. It’s a more expensive option but the most convenient, which makes it popular with busy customers and vulnerable groups like families or older travelers.

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