Airports in the UK are hiking car parking charges by as much as 55% over Christmas, study reveals
- A review of 13 major UK airports found that 10 increase charges for festive dates
- Luton had the steepest fee, demanding £121.99 to park for a day in short stay
- On average, motorists are expected to pay 15% higher parking fees over Christmas than in mid January
The majority of UK airports are stinging holidaymakers travelling over the Christmas break with increased car parking fees, research has found.
A comparison of parking charges at 13 airports over the festive period revealed that 10 were charging steeper fees this week than in the quiet period of the middle of January 2020.
The cost of the most expensive of all airport car parks was a massive £121.99 for 24 hours in short stay at Luton.
Christmas sting: Luton Airport has been founds to be hiking the price of parking in short stay by 42% during the festive break
Parking comparison site, Airport Parking Shop reviewed the cost to park for one week in official onsite airport car parks, checking prices for both long and short stay parking, from 21 to 31 December.
It then compared these prices to the post-Christmas dates of 7 and 14 January and found that 10 out of 13 airports (77 per cent) are hiking up their prices to take advantage of the Christmas travel rush.
On average, motorists are expected to pay 15 per cent higher parking fees over Christmas than in January, the study found.
The biggest difference in parking fees was at Birmingham Airport, with charges for the festive period were higher by as much as 55 per cent for this week compared to a month later.
Most expensive parking for December 21-31
1. Luton Short Stay: £111.81
2. Bristol Short Stay: £101.26
3. Birmingham Short Stay: £95.88
4. Bristol Long Stay: £95.35
5. Cardiff Short Stay: £80.49
Source: Airport Parking Shop
Daily charges to leave a car in short stay from 21 to 26 December at the Midlands airport are £109.42, while a 24-hour short-stay fee on January 14 is £70.50.
Other airports were also found to be raising their prices significantly on key Christmas travel dates.
The most expensive place to leave a motor at an airport car park is Luton’s Short Stay facilities, where daily charges for Christmas Day, Boxing Day and 27 December are a whopping £121.99.
In January, the same car park is £85.99 a day, meaning a hike of 42 per cent.
On average, the most expensive day over Christmas to park at an airport is Boxing Day at £76, the investigation calculated.
It is also one of the busiest days, with Airport Parking Shop claiming it has received more booking requests for December 26th than any other date over the festive season.
The cheapest day overall for parking over the festive period is New Year’s Eve, with average costs being £66 each day.
The cheapest UK airport for parking is Leeds Bradford, which hasn’t increased its costs over Christmas
A review of 13 major UK airports found that 10 increase charges for festive dates, with the priciest of all being Boxing Day
Out of the 13 airports reviewed, Leeds Bradford Airport offered the cheapest parking prices overall during the Christmas week, with a consistent price of £45 to park in the long stay car park every day from 21 December to New Year’s Eve.
Least expensive parking for December 21-31
1. Leeds Bradford Long Stay: £45.00
2. Newcastle Long Stay: £48.49
3. Glasgow Long Stay: £49.99
4. Liverpool Long Stay: £50.63
5. Edinburgh Long Stay: £53.99
Source: Airport Parking Shop
That price remains consistent in January too.
Glasgow and Newcastle were the only other airports that had consistent parking rates across the December dates, the study found.
Alice Fowler, product manager at Airport Parking Shop said: ‘Consumers should watch out for this Christmas Airport Parking Levy – where some airports are increasing the price to park to cash in on the Christmas travel rush.
‘If you’re travelling on Boxing Day, then we recommend some of the offsite car parks as it’s the most expensive day to park up.’
This is Money recommends drivers do plenty of research before booking an offsite parking service, given the volume of horror stories regarding vehicles being damaged, used without the owner’s knowledge and being left in unsuitable locations.
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