Over the years I have filed many reports on airport drop-off fees.
Most recently I featured the new charges being introduced at Edinburgh airport from November 9.
And now London Stansted and Manchester have quietly raised their drop-off fees to recoup lost revenue caused by the pandemic.
Both Stansted and Manchester are under MAG (Manchester Airport Group) ownership.
Stansted’s drop-off fee has risen to a minimum of £7 for up to 15 minutes. Stay any longer and the fee in question rises to £25.
But that’s not all. Any drivers who re-enters the drop-off zone “within 30 minutes of first entering” will be charged a further £20 re-entering fee.
If the term “re-entering fee” sounds familiar it’s because Manchester first introduced what it calls a “re-circulation fee”.
For its part Manchester now charges £5 (from £3) for five minutes spent in the drop-off zone. Ten minutes costs £6 (from £4) while a longer stay (over ten minutes) will set you back £25.
Back to Stansted. Its new £7 drop-off fee represents a significant rise on the £4 it was charging only last year.
This means, to the best of my knowledge, that Stansted can now claim the distinction of having the UK’s highest (minimum) drop-off fee.
I have checked a number of other UK airports and the minimum drop-off fee ranges between £2 for Glasgow, £3 for Aberdeen or Birmingham and £4 for Luton.
However these prices may change in the weeks and months ahead as airports are desperately short of cash owing to falling passenger volume.
MAG has provided Business Traveller with the following statement:
“Like any business faced with such challenges, it has been necessary to look realistically at how we can plan our recovery from the biggest crisis ever faced by our industry.
“This includes reviewing income from car parking, retail and other products and services which is key to remaining as competitive as possible.
“Like the vast majority of airports we charge for access to our terminal forecourts as part of our long-term commitment to reduce the number of “kiss and fly” car journeys.
“Passengers will continue to have access to a free drop-off facility from where they can be transferred to their terminals.”