Martin Lewis’ Money Saving Expert reveals how to dodge airport drop-off charges as prices soar since pandemic
Airport drop-off charges have increased substantially since the pandemic, with drivers forking out up to £7 to wave off a loved-one - see full list of UK’s most expensive airport drop-off charges.
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Martin Lewis’ Money Saving Expert has revealed how to dodge hefty airport drop-off charges after prices soared since the pandemic. Fees have doubled in the past few years, it has been reported, while three airports - Heathrow, Gatwick and Norwich - have introduced charges for drop-offs outside the terminal since the pandemic began.
A total of 16 airports already have high fees in place. Stansted has hiked its free for drop-offs of 15 minutes or less from £4 to £7.
Another 16 travel hubs have increased fees already in place - according to MSE, Stansted has hiked its fee for drop-offs of 15 minutes or less from £4 to a whopping £7. This makes it the most expensive in he country, along with Bristol where a 10 minute drop-off has increased 400 per cent from £1 to £5.
Aberderrn, Exeter, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newcastle are among several airports that have doubled their charges or more. Newquay and London City are among the few remaining airports across the UK that don’t charge a fee.
Oli Townsend, assistant deals & features editor at MoneySavingExpert.com, said: “The cost of dropping people off at an airport has soared since the pandemic. Many passengers will rightly be shocked when hit with a charge as much as £7 just to set someone down outside the terminal.
“But the good news is that in most cases there’s no need to pay anything when saying goodbye to family and friends, as almost all airports have a free area for drop-offs – as long as you’re willing to take a short walk or shuttle ride to the terminal.”
UK’s most expensive airports drop-off charges
- Aberdeen - The price of a stay up to 10-minutes is up from £2 to £4. Long stay car park is free for up to 30 minutes - free shuttle bus to the terminal.
- Bristol - A 10-minute stay has increased from £1 to £5. There is a free one-hour waiting zone by the ‘Silver Zone’ car park to the south of the terminal.
- Cardiff Airport - Free if the drop off takes five minutes or less, with a £13 charge if it takes 10 minutes, plus £3 more for every ten minutes after.
- East Midlands Airport - A 10-minute drop-off now costs £5, having previously been £3 to £5. The Long stay 2 car park is free for up to an hour, is a 15-minute walk to the terminal or a two minute bus ride.
- Edinburgh Airport - The minimum charge has doubled from £2 for five-minute to £4. The airport’s long-stay car park is free for up to 30 minutes and is eight minutes from the terminal.
- Exeter Airport - A 30 minute drop-off has risen from £1 to £3.
- Gatwick Airport - Whereas before dropping off at Gatwick was free, now it costs £5 for up to 10 minutes and £1 for each additional minute after that. A free shuttle bus can be caught from the free long stay car park.
- Glasgow Airport - A 10-minute drop-off used to cost £2, now it’ll set you back £4. Electric vehicles can drop off for free while blue badge holders can drop off for free in Car Park 2.
- Glasgow Prestwick - The airport now charges £3 for up to an hour’s wait, up from £2
- Heathrow Airport - A £5 charge has been introduced to enter the drop-off area, with no waiting allowed. Drop-offs of up to 30 minutes are free in the various long-stay car parks.
- Leeds Bradford Airport - The charge for a 10-minute drop-off has risen from £3 to £5. The airport has a one-hour free parking zone, with a three to four-minute walk to the terminal.
- Liverpool Airport - A 10-minute drop-off now costs £4, up from £3. The ‘Drop Off 2’ car park is free for up to 40 minutes and is just five minutes walk from the terminal.
- Luton Airport - 10-minute drop-off by two-thirds, from £3 to £5. The mid-term car park is free for up to 15 minutes and is a 10 to 15-minute walk to the terminal.
- Manchester Airport - Drop off now costs £5 for five minutes and £6 for 10 minutes, compared with £3 and £4 respectively. The airport has a free drop-off area located in JetParks 1 which is connected to the terminal by a free shuttle bus.
- Newcastle Airport - The price of a ten-minute drop off has doubled from £2 to £4. The short stay two car park is free for up to 15 minutes.
- Norwich Airport - A £3 charge for drop-offs of up to 30 minutes has been introduced.
- Southend Airport - The airport now charges £5 for up to 10 minutes, up from £3, while drop-offs between 10 and 30 minutes have risen from £5 to £7. The long stay 3 car park is free for up to 15 minutes
- Stansted Airport - The cost of drop-offs of up to 15 minutes now cost £7, not £4. The airport’s mid-stay car park is free for an hour.