Parking at the airport - All you should know - Flightright UK

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Parking at the airport – Everything you need to know

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The most important facts about parking at the airport

  • Air travellers should arrive at the airport early to have enough time to park and check-in.
  • When choosing an airport car park, you should consider availability, capacity and distance from the terminal.
  • The cost of parking directly at the airport can vary depending on location, airport and parking options.
  • Some airports offer free parking, but these spaces are often limited and not necessarily located directly at the terminal.
  • Some options to park or stop at the airport for free are Kiss & Fly, Park & Ride, and Neighbourhood parking.
  • Types of parking include shuttle parking, valet parking and parking within walking distance.
  • With valet parking, the car is left at the airport, parked by staff and picked up again on return.
  • If air travellers miss their flight due to a delay caused by parking problems, they are generally not entitled to compensation from the airline.
  • The airlines are not responsible for factors that are within the passengers’ control, such as time management and parking.

Did you have a flight delay or cancellation? Check your rights now and increase your chances of compensation

Airport parking can often be the most stressful part of any travelling experience. With limited options, high prices and confusing regulations, it’s no wonder that many travellers struggle to find reliable and affordable parking for their cars. If you’re about to embark on a journey and are travelling to the airport by car, there are a few important things to consider when it comes to parking. In this blog article, we will discuss everything you need to know about parking at airports. From different types of parking and parking offers to car park comparisons and the cost of parking at the airport, we will cover all the relevant information.

You’ll also find out what to look out for when booking a parking space, the costs of parking and how to find a cheap parking space at the airport. Whether you’re a frequent flyer or a first-time traveller, this guide will help you reduce the stress of airport parking and make your next travel experience stress-free. Read on to make sure you’re fully prepared and can enjoy your journey without parking worries.

Why reserve a car park/parking space?

Booking a parking space in advance is a practical and sensible way to make your journey or stay less stressful and more enjoyable. It allows you to arrive smoothly and gives you the peace of mind that you have a safe and available parking space. There are several reasons why it makes sense to reserve a car park in advance:

  • Availability: by reserving a parking space, you ensure that a parking space will be available for you when you arrive at your destination. This is particularly important in busy areas such as airports, train stations, city centres or event venues where parking spaces may be limited.
  • Time saving: If you reserve a parking space in advance, you save yourself the trouble of searching for a free parking space. This saves you time and stress, especially if you are pressed for time or have a tight schedule.
  • Convenience: With a reservation, you can be sure that you have a parking space and don’t have to worry about alternative parking options. You can drive straight to the reserved car park and park there.
  • Cost control: In some cases, you can also save money by reserving a parking space, as you may be able to benefit from special rates or discounts. This is particularly the case if you are parking for a long period of time or have to park regularly at a certain location.
  • Security: Some car parks that can be pre-booked offer additional security measures such as CCTV cameras or security staff. This can give you an increased sense of security, especially if you need to leave valuable items in your vehicle.

How much does it cost to park directly at the airport?

The cost of parking directly at the airport can vary depending on the location, airport and parking option. Prices may also depend on the duration of the car park. There are usually different car parks to choose from, which may have different price categories.

At Liverpool John Lennon Airport, there are several parking options, including Short Stay, Long Stay, and Premium parking. The pricing for these parking facilities can differ based on the proximity to the terminal and the duration of the stay. For instance, Short-stay parking might be more expensive per hour but convenient for quick visits, while Long-Stay parking could offer better rates for extended periods. Long Stay parking at Liverpool John Lennon Airport is £4.53 per day, while Fast Track parking costs £124.99 per week.

Similarly, Birmingham Airport offers different parking services like Car Park 1, Car Park 2&3, and Long Stay. Each of these options caters to different needs, with varying prices based on the distance from the terminal and the length of time you park.

For the most current and detailed pricing information, it’s recommended to visit the official websites of Liverpool John Lennon Airport and Birmingham Airport. These sources provide comprehensive comparisons and booking options for airport parking, allowing travellers to find the most suitable and cost-effective parking solution for their needs. It’s always a good idea to research parking options and associated costs in advance to make an informed decision and potentially save money.

Are you having trouble with a cancellation or flight delay and don’t want to accept it without doing anything? You shouldn’t either. After all, you are entitled to compensation in many cases of delay or cancellation.

You can rely on the support of our experts in the following cases:
Flight delay compensation, flight cancellation compensation
Compensation for overbooking
Compensation for denied boarding

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With us, you can check your claims free of charge in two minutes. You can receive up to 520 pounds compensation per person (minus the success commission).

When did the airline inform you of the flight cancellation or delay?
On the day of the flight or less than 14 days before or more than 14 days before departure.

Are you also affected by a missed connecting flight? Check your flight now. Simple ✔ fast ✔ & without risk ✔

Free parking at the airport – is that possible?

Yes, some airports offer free parking. However, such free car parks are often limited and may not be located directly at the terminal. Here are some ways to park for free at the airport:

  • Kiss & Fly: Many airports have special short-term car parks designated for loading and unloading passengers. These car parks can be free of charge, but the parking time is usually limited to avoid prolonged parking.
  • Park & Ride: Some airports offer free car parks located just outside the airport grounds. From there, you can use a shuttle bus or other form of public transport to get to the terminal. This option is usually free of charge but may require a little more time and planning.
  • Parking in the area: In some cases, there are public roads or car parks near the airport where parking is free. This can be an option if you are willing to take a short walk or drive to the airport.

It is important to note that free parking is often limited and may not always be available, especially in popular airports or at peak times. Therefore, it is advisable to check in advance and explore alternative parking options to ensure you can find a parking space.

Also, bear in mind that vehicle security and the availability of surveillance or protection measures may be limited if you opt for free off-airport parking. Familiarise yourself with the local conditions and take appropriate precautions to protect your vehicle.


Car park comparison: Short-term parking and long-term parking spaces

When parking at the airport, there are usually various options to choose from, depending on how long you want to park your vehicle. The two most common options are short-term parking and long-term car parks. Here is a comparison between these two parking options:

1. Short-term parking

Short-term parking is often possible directly at the terminal, which makes the walk to check-in very short. However, the parking fees are usually higher than for long-term car parks. They are usually charged per hour or part thereof and can quickly become expensive. Short-term parking is ideal for picking up or dropping off passengers, for short business trips or for holidaymakers who are only travelling for a short time. Here are some features of short-stay parking:

  • Proximity to the terminal
  • High tariffs
  • Convenient payment
  • Hourly or daily rate

2. Long-stay car parks

Long-stay car parks are a cheaper way to park your vehicle at the airport. These car parks are usually located a little further away from the terminal but usually offer free shuttle buses to take you to the terminal. The parking fees for long-term car parks are often regulated per day or week and are cheaper than short-term parking. Long-stay car parks are particularly suitable for travellers who are travelling for a longer period and are looking for a cheap parking space. Here are some features of long-term car parks:

  • Distance to the terminal
  • Lower charges
  • Reservation in advance
  • Daily or weekly rates

It is important to note that the exact facilities, prices and availability of short-term and long-term car parks may vary from airport to airport. It is advisable to check the specific information of each airport or contact the airport’s customer service to get exact details and choose the best parking option for your needs.

How do I find a cheap car park at the airport?

To find a cheap car park at the airport, you can follow these tips and strategies:

  • Book early: The earlier you book your car park, the more likely you are to benefit from early booking discounts or special offers. Therefore, plan your journey in advance and book your car park in good time to get the best prices.
  • Compare the prices: Use online platforms or specialised websites that compare different parking options at the airport. These platforms allow you to compare the prices and services of different car park providers and find the best deal.
  • Look for alternative parking options: Sometimes car parks near the airport outside the official airport area can offer cheaper options. Look for car parks near the airport that offer shuttle services to the terminal. These car parks can often be cheaper than parking directly at the airport.
  • Look out for special offers and discounts: Look out for special offers, discount codes or vouchers for parking at the airport. Often airports or car park providers offer special promotions or discounts that can help you save money.
  • Consider car park duration: Some car parks offer tiered pricing depending on how long you park. If you know your travel dates, check whether there are cheaper rates for longer parking periods.

By following these tips and comparing different car park options, you can find a cheap car park at the airport and save money. However, remember that security and distance from the terminal are also important factors when choosing a car park.

Types of car parks: What types of parking are there?


When parking at the airport, different types of parking meet the needs and preferences of travellers. Here are three common types of parking: shuttle parking, valet parking and parking within walking distance.

Shuttle parking at the airport

With shuttle parking, you drive your car to the car park provider and are taken to the airport by a shuttle bus or van. The bus also picks you up again when you return.

Valet parking at the airport

With valet parking, the car is dropped off directly at the airport and then parked by the provider’s staff.  Valet parking staff take the vehicle and park it safely. On return, the car is taken back to the airport, where you can pick it up again.

Parking within walking distance

Some airports offer car parks within walking distance of the terminal. With in-walking distance parking, you park your car in a car park near the airport and then walk to the terminal. These car parks are ideal for passengers who would like to walk to the terminal and do not require a transfer. This is often a cheaper option than the other two but requires more time and effort.

Missed flight due to parking at the airport – Am I entitled to compensation as a passenger?


A missed flight can have various causes, and the question of who is responsible for the delay is crucial for the right to compensation. If you miss your flight because of a delay at check-in due to parking at the airport, you are generally not entitled to compensation from the airline under the UK261 Regulation. If you booked your flight through a travel agent, you should contact them directly.

UK261 Regulation regulates the rights of air travellers in the event of flight delays, cancellations and overbooking. It stipulates that passengers can receive financial compensation of up to 520 pounds for delays of more than three hours, depending on the flight route and duration of the delay. However, these claims only apply if the delay is due to reasons for which the airline is responsible.

  • Short-haul (up to 1500 kilometres): You are entitled to compensation of £220
  • Medium distance (up to 3500 kilometres): You are entitled to compensation of £350
  • Long distance (over 3500 kilometres): You are entitled to compensation of £520

According to the UK261 Regulation, the amount of compensation is calculated according to the flight distance:

Short distance up to 1500 kmMedium distance up to 3500 kmLong distance from 3500 km
e.g. London – Edinburghe.g. London – Athense.g. London – Tokyo
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However, if the delay and missed flight are due to your fault, such as a delay at check-in due to parking at the airport, the airline is exempt from its obligation to pay compensation. The reason for this is that the airline cannot be held responsible for delays or problems caused by individual circumstances or actions of the passenger. Parking at the airport and the associated logistical decisions and time management are the responsibility of the passenger. In this case, the airline is not responsible for the delay or missed flight. In such cases, it is assumed that the responsibility for timely arrival and check-in lies with the passenger.

If you have missed your flight due to a check-in delay caused by parking at the airport, you should contact the airline directly to enquire about possible alternative solutions or goodwill services. However, there is usually no legal entitlement to financial compensation under the UK261 Regulation in such a situation. It is therefore important to arrive at the airport on time and to observe the specified check-in deadlines to avoid unpleasant situations.

Missed flight due to parking problems at the airport – tips to avoid such incidents

  • Arrive early / arrive early: Allow plenty of time to get to the airport, especially during peak times or if you are travelling in an unfamiliar area. Experts usually recommend arriving at the airport at least two to three hours before departure to allow enough time for check-in and other formalities at the airport. If you arrive earlier, you will also have enough time to find a suitable parking space.
  • Book in advance/plan ahead: Many airports offer the option of reserving parking spaces in advance. Plan ahead and reserve a parking space at the airport in advance. This will give you enough time to find a suitable car park that meets your needs.
  • Check parking options: Find out in advance about the various car parking options at the airport. Some airports have several car parks or car parks to choose from, and some are closer to the terminal than others.
  • Use the shuttle service: Some airports offer a free shuttle service from the car park to the terminal. Use this option to save time and avoid stress.
  • Alternative means of transport: Consider whether there are alternative transport options, such as public transport, taxis or carpooling, to reach the airport. These can often be more reliable and avoid the stress of parking.
  • Online check-in: Use the option of online check-in to save time at the airport and make your way to the gate. This also saves time when checking in baggage.
  • Park & Ride: Another option is to use a “Park & Ride” service. This involves parking your car in a secluded location, from where a shuttle bus will take you to the airport.

By following these tips, you can reduce your chances of missing your flight due to airport parking issues. Planning and forethought are key to ensuring a smooth journey to the terminal.


Parking at the airport – What to look out for when booking a parking space

What should you look out for when booking a parking space? By considering the following points, you can find a car park at the airport that meets your requirements and offers you a carefree parking experience.

1. Opening hours – open around the clock?

Check the opening hours of the car park to make sure it is open during your travel times. Some car parks are open 24/7, while others may have specific closing times.

2. Key handover – do you have to hand over the keys?

Find out whether you have to hand in your car keys. Some car parks require you to hand in your keys, while others allow you to take your keys with you.

3. Surveillance – Is there camera surveillance of the car park?

Make sure that the car park has adequate surveillance to ensure the safety of your vehicle. Ask about camera systems or other security measures in the car park.

4. Distance – How far is the car park from the airport?

Note the distance of the car park from the airport. Find out about the transfer service or walking time to the terminal to ensure you can allow enough time for your journey.

5. Covered – Simple car parks or multi-storey car parks?


Determine whether the car park is covered or whether it is simply an open-air car park. Covered car parks offer additional protection from the weather.

6. Cost of transfer – Is the transfer to the airport free of charge?

Check whether the transfer service to the airport is included in the car park price or whether additional charges apply. Some car parks offer a free shuttle service, while others may charge an additional transfer fee.

7. Make sure you choose the right type of car park

Choose the type of parking that best suits your needs, such as shuttle parking, valet parking or parking within walking distance. Make sure that the car park offers the type of parking you require.

8. Cancellation – pay attention to cancellation conditions

Observe the car park’s cancellation conditions. Find out whether you can cancel the parking space free of charge and when this is possible.

Park offers: The best offers at a glance

Offer and overview

1. Terminal parking – park directly and conveniently in the terminal car parks at the airport

Terminal Parking allows you to park your vehicle directly in the multi-storey car parks near the terminal. This offers you convenient access and shortens the distances to check-in.

2. Business parking/business car parks: Extra wide parking spaces and short distances to check-in

Business Parking offers special parking spaces that are wider and more convenient than standard parking spaces. This option is ideal for business travellers who need extra space for luggage or comfort. The routes to check-in are usually short and convenient.

3. Holiday parking for holidaymakers – cheap parking spaces in the car park

Holiday Parking offers affordable parking options for holiday travellers who want to park their vehicle at the airport for a longer period. These car parks are often located in multi-storey car parks and usually offer competitive prices for longer parking periods.

4. e-Parking – conveniently charge your electric vehicle


eParking is a special option for electric vehicle owners. These car parks have charging points where you can conveniently charge your electric vehicle while you are travelling.

5. Attractive and exclusive parking offers: Premium and corporate parking for frequent travellers and companies

There are attractive and exclusive parking offers such as Premium Parking or Corporate Parking, which are specially tailored to the needs of frequent flyers and companies. These car parks often offer additional amenities such as reserved parking spaces, preferential access and special services.

6. Park, sleep & fly

Park, Sleep & Fly is an option for travellers looking for overnight accommodation near the airport. This offer usually includes an overnight stay in a hotel near the airport as well as parking facilities for your vehicle during your journey.

These different parking offers allow travellers to choose the option that best suits their individual needs and preferences. Each offer has specific features and benefits that enhance the comfort and convenience of parking at the airport.

Special car parks at the airport

The following special car parks at the airport offer special benefits and amenities for specific target groups. They are designed to meet the individual needs and preferences of travellers and to make parking at the airport as pleasant as possible for everyone.

Barrier-free parking

Barrier-free parking

Barrier-free car parks at the airport are designed for people with reduced mobility or disabilities. These car parks are usually located near the terminal entrance and offer additional space for wheelchairs or other aids.

Coach parking

Coach car parks at the airport are specifically designed for coaches picking up or dropping off passengers. These car parks offer sufficient space for coaches and facilitate the transfer of larger groups.

Motorbike parking spaces

Motorbike parking spaces at the airport are reserved for motorcyclists. They offer special areas or parking spaces that are tailored to the needs of motorbikes and ensure safe parking.

Women’s car parks – Is parking for men prohibited here?

Women’s car parks at the airport are special car parks designed for the safety and comfort of women. They often offer additional lighting and are located near the terminal entrance. It is important to note that men are not specifically excluded from parking in these spaces unless explicitly stated.

Cost comparison for parking at the airport – an overview

1. Airport car parks in the UK

If you are travelling to the airport by car, you can expect high parking costs at some British airports. The table below provides an overview of car parking prices at some of the airports in the UK. Please note that prices tend to fluctuate significantly throughout the year, influenced by factors such as availability and demand.

AirportLowest Parking Fee (Per Day)Highest Parking Fee (Per Week)
Liverpool John Lennon Airport£4.53 (Long Stay Parking)£124.99 (Fast Track Parking)
Birmingham Airport£10.00 (Economy Lot)​​£19.95 per day (Valet Parking – no specific weekly rate provided)​​
Bristol Airport£43.99£176.99
Southampton AirportFrom £34.99 (2 days)From £95.99 (Priority parking)
Manchester Airport£50 T3 Arrivals (Pick Up)Long Stay Parking from £55.99 8-day stay

2. Airport car parks in Europe

How can Flightright help you?

Are you stuck at the airport due to a flight delay? Your flight has been cancelled or you have been removed from the passenger list (denied boarding)?

In each of the situations described, you as a passenger have a right to compensation.

According to the UK261 Legislation, passengers are entitled to compensation in the event of a delay, cancellation, overbooking, or missed connection. They can receive up to £520 compensation per person (minus the success commission). This compensation is independent of the ticket price. Flightright enforces your rights for you. If necessary also in court.

Tip: Flightright helps you to enforce your passenger rights! With us, you can check your claims free of charge in two minutes. ✔️Easy, ✔️fast ✔️& without risk

As the market-leading consumer portal, Flightright fights for the enforcement of air passenger rights. We stand up for your rights in the event of a flight delay, cancellation or denied boarding and refer to the UK261 Regulation. Flightright’s air passenger rights experts are also happy to help you with ticket refunds and refunds for cancelled package holidays.

As experts in the field of air passenger rights, we enforce your right to compensation against the airline!

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