It’s a typical scene in every romantic comedy – girl meets guy and romance blossoms. Inevitably there will be a sad goodbye as the girl gets dropped off at the airport, but what if that intimate moment is interrupted by said guy dashing off in order to have to pay a parking charge at the airport – kind of ruins the moment no?
Eight major airports have increased the cost for drivers dropping off passengers in the last twelve months. In fact, one airport – Southend have increased their charges to £5 for people staying ten minutes or more.
The report (undertaken by MoneySavingExpert) found that eight airports in the UK had upped their prices and a further two airports had increased charges for certain drop-off periods but lowered others.
Steve Nowottny, news and features editor at MoneySavingExpert.com, said: "The cost of dropping a loved one off at an airport terminal has soared in the last year, with over a third of airports which charge for 10-minute drop-offs upping at least some of their costs.
"Many passengers will rightly be stunned to be hit with this kind of charge for a 10-minute drop-off – frankly, it's hard to know how airports can justify such eye-watering fees.
"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."
However, there are ways and means to try and avoid the drop off fee. Even if there's a charge to park right outside the terminal, most airports do have an alternative free drop-off area.
These areas are normally a little bit further away though – but they are free. You may need to take a shuttle or walk a little way, so it is important to ensure that you factor in some extra time to account for this.
How you can beat the kiss and fly charge
Here is a breakdown of how to avoid the ‘kiss and fly’ charges at each of the UK airports who currently charge. Any airports that have not been included do not currently offer any options to park for free. At London City, Gatwick and Heathrow, it is free to drop passengers off - but there is no waiting allowed.
Aberdeen - You can park in the long-stay car park for up to 15 minutes and there is a free shuttle bus to the terminal.
Belfast – You can park in the long-stay car park for up to 15 minutes and then it’s a six-minute walk to the terminal.
Doncaster Sheffield – You can park for free up to 15 minutes and then it is a two-minute walk to the terminal.
East Midlands – One of the best options for avoiding the ‘kiss and fly’ charges out of all the UK airports. Here, you can park for free up to an hour and there is a regular bus that gets you to the terminal in just five minutes.
Edinburgh – You have ten minutes grace to park for free and there is a free shuttle bus that takes just seven minutes to get to the terminal.
Exeter – You can park for free for up to ten minutes in car park P4 and passengers can take the free shuttle bus which takes just two minutes to get to the terminal.
Glasgow – You can park for free for thirty minutes and there is a free bus that gets you to the terminal in just three minutes.
Leeds Bradford – There is a one-hour free parking zone at Leeds and then it is a three-four minute walk to the terminal.
Liverpool – At Liverpool, you can park for free for up to 40 minutes at the Drop Off 2 car park.
Luton – Drivers can park in the mid-term car park where they can park for free for up to 15 minutes.
Manchester – There is a free drop off area which is just a short shuttle ride away from the airport.
Newcastle – Park for free for up to 15 minutes at the short stay 2 car park and then passengers can take a short walk to the terminal.
Southend – Beat the prices at Southend by parking for free for up to 15 minutes in their long stay 3 car park.
Southampton – You have 30 minutes free parking at Southampton long stay car park and there is a free shuttle bus from the car park that runs every ten minutes or so.
Stansted – Impressively, you can park for free for up to an hour at Stansted and take the shuttle bus every ten minutes which takes just seven minutes to reach the terminal.
If you want to read more about the change in parking charges then you can find the full article here.