How much does it cost to leave your car at the airport?

February 6, 2023

As the travel industry begins life post-pandemic, air travel is just as stressful as ever. People are traveling either because of pent up demand, or because they’re getting great deals on flights. Still, the cost of parking at airports hasn’t gone down. 

Paying high fees for long-term parking can be a key stressor for anyone who gets on a plane. But, making sure your car is safe while you’re away doesn’t have to take a bite out of your wallet. Here, explore how you can save money on parking at airports. 

  • Long term vs short term parking at airports
  • The typical cost of airport parking 
  • 6 actionable tips for major savings 

Let’s learn how to save so you can buy an extra souvenir on your next trip. 


First, Long-Term vs Short-Term Parking at Airports

Prices and locations vary for long-term and short-term parking at airports, so it’s important to understand the difference. 

What Does Short-Term Parking Mean? 

At most large airports, short-term parking lots are typically located near the terminals. These areas provide more convenient, yet higher-priced spaces to leave your vehicle while you travel. Short-term parking lots aren’t designed to leave your car overnight. Instead, they are intended for dropping off and picking up passengers. 

What is Considered Long-Term Parking at the Airport?

Long-term parking lots or “satellite” lots are usually located some distance from airport terminals. From one of these areas, it will take longer to get from your vehicle to your terminal, but you will pay less to park here. Long-term parking lots are intended for passengers who plan to park at the airport through the duration of their trip. An even better option, off-airport parking, gives you the opportunity to leverage long-term parking with sizable cost savings. 

Next, The Typical Cost of Airport Parking 

Depending on how many days or weeks you will be away, your airport parking costs could vary. Here’s how much long-term airport parking can cost, on average. 

So, How Much Does it Cost to Leave Your Car at an Airport for a Week? ...a Month?

According to Travel and Leisure, short-term parking can cost from $17 at Orlando International (MCO) to $59 at New York LaGuardia (LGA) per day. Long-term parking ranges from $6 at Houston George Bush Intercontinental (IAH) to $39 at New York LaGuardia (LGA)

So, parking at an airport for a week in a long-term, on-site lot can cost from $42 to $273. A month of parking at an airport might cost $180 to $1,170, depending on your location. Parking expenses are a significant travel cost. Luckily, there are several ways you can save. 

Now, Actionable Tips to Save on Parking at Airports

If you live in Hawaii and you drive an electric car, you might be able to park for free. For everyone else, we’ve created this list. If you’re ready to save, explore these ideas to find out how you can save on long-term parking during air travel. 

1. Look for Coupons and Deals 

When planning a trip, check out coupon websites for deals. You could save up to 90% on local parking deals at your local airport. With a quick Google search, you never know what you might find. 

2. Avoid Short-Term Parking Lots at All Costs

As stated above, short-term parking lots are intended for picking up and dropping off passengers. If you plan to leave your vehicle overnight, take care to never park in a short-term lot. You will pay more than necessary for the mere convenience of a shorter walk. 

Note that some small airports only have short-term lots on airport property. In this case, you should find somewhere nearby to leave your car rather than being price-gouged upwards of $70 per day for a lack of preparation. 

3. Book Long-Term Parking in Advance

A secret you may not know is that you can sometimes save on long-term parking when you book in advance. So, call your parking lot and ask about prices for last-minute vs booked pricing. At The Parking Spot, reservations are always less expensive than drive-up rates, so reserve a spot online before you fly.

Be warned that if you book ahead of time, then cancel before your flight, some parking lots may charge a cancellation fee. So, if you choose this route, find out if this is a risk and plan accordingly. 

4. Research Your Current Memberships

Examine all of your credit cards, insurance, phone company, credit union, and other memberships to see if you have access to any deals on travel, transportation, or parking at airports that you’re not aware of. For example, AAA members can save a ton on parking at The Parking Spot

Many people don’t even know all of the perks they’re not leveraging because they don’t read the fine print when they sign up for services and memberships. So, there’s a chance you have access to exclusive discounts that you don’t even know about. 

5. Travel Outside of Peak Times

During peak travel times such as holidays, parking and other travel-related expenses can be higher. Furthermore, deals may be harder to come by. So, if you travel during off-peak times of the year or month, you are more likely to find cost savings. 

Depending on where you are in the world, peak times may vary. Certainly, air travel during the winter holidays and Spring Break are likely to be the busiest air travel times of year (avoid these times if you’re looking for deals). 

6. Join The Spot Club

By joining The Spot Club at no cost, you can enjoy affordable airport parking with additional perks including waived reservation fees and touchless entry and exit with The Parking Spot app. Spot Club members also earn free parking and get access to exclusive deals and upgrades. 

The Spot Club is free of charge and helps you save on already awesome airport parking deals at The Parking Spot locations across the country. Our lots are well lit, fenced, and always open. Select locations also offer valet parking and charging stations.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, you found some advice here that you can use to save on parking at airports. If there’s a tip we missed, be sure to let us know how you save money when traveling by air. Download The Parking Spot app for free today and take advantage of affordable short and long-term airport parking. 

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