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Anybody ever park free at or near airports?

Carol C

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I do mean "free"...not "free with one night's paid stay" or anything like that. There must be some tricks out there to get to park free at or near a major airport without getting towed. Anyone?

Also...has anyone ever gambled on a cheap hotel room at a major airport via Hotwire or Priceline if there's a shuttle bus service there? Since you don't have any guarantees of services...just a bed...via those bidding sites, is it a safe gamble that you can park for a week for free if you stay one night using a Hotwire or Priceline rate?

TIA for any success stories.
 

Carolinian

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I have a trick I have used with Washington Reagan Airport, but I would not post the details online. I have parked free on several 10 day trips to Europe using it.
 

djs

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When you search for a room on Hotwire, you can see if the particular hotel has an airport shuttle; not an option with Priceline though. My feeling is that ANY hotel billing itself as an "airport" hotel would have a shuttle of some sort (and most likely free); Priceline will allow you to select the airport as an option.

Take a look at better bidding for help on using HW and PL. Although there are no guarantees as to which hotel you're going to get this site will help you make a fairly well educated guess as to which hotel you are bidding on.

My guess is that for hotels that allow long-term parking you'd need to book under a different rate than the HW or PL rate though.
 

falmouth3

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My SIL is a firefighter and she gets free parking at the airport. That option won't work for the rest of us, though.
 

UWSurfer

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LA has a light rail line which is much maligned because it doesn't actually go to the airport, but comes close to the south east edge of the airport property. To aide with this, LAX has a nearly free airport shuttle which runs to and from the parking lot at the Aviation & Imperial Green Line Station.

Parking is free and the shuttle from the terminals to the station is free. Shuttle to the airport requires you show proof of payment from the train (paper ticket) or bus transfer. Bus/rail fare runs about $1.50 and machines are right at the station to allow you to acquire a ticket. Employee's from the airport use this lot for free parking all the time.

I used to leave a car there overnights and weekends and use the train to shuttle between my home and the car to continue onto work, saving 40 miles of driving a day. I've since used the lot for airport parking and have had no issues. I will note however there have been many piles of auto glass in the parking spaces...indicating breakins are a problem there. Also the shuttle is public transportation so don't look for any assistance getting your luggage in and out of the shuttle.

Still, it's free.
 

Carol C

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Funny!

I really wish Marriott would let MVCI "owners" park for free at their airport hotels, as a value added perk. I live close enough to a major airport that it seems crazy to me to pay for one night's hotel lodging just to park "for free". Plus I'd rather keep my parked in my driveway during the holidays so it will look like I'm at home.

Anyone with trade secrets on gate-crashing when it comes to airport parking, feel free to PM me if you don't want to publicly post. Loose lips sink ships and all that. :wave:
 

JudyH

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Park in a nearby residential neighborhood, call a cab, and take off from there.
 

Talent312

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At my small-town airport (Gainesville FL), there's a free, unlimited lot at the county jail within walking distance of the terminal.
 

Fern Modena

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Now if you lived near me, you could do exactly that. I frequently volunteer to take my girlfriends to the airport. Its a quick and easy trip for me, about 45 minutes round trip including drop off.

And out here, if you are over 65 you can get $40. worth of taxi tickets every two months for $10. Get a ride to the airport, and the way home costs you about $32., so you give the driver the whole $40.

Fern

Plus I'd rather keep my parked in my driveway during the holidays so it will look like I'm at home.
 

Passepartout

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I know that this info doesn't help anyone, but here at KTWF, our local airport, parking is free. Unlimited. 100 foot walk from the gate, including security. We used to drive to Salt Lake City, pay for a hotel going and coming, park gratis there, but on many trips, we can stay home, catch the 7am turboprop to SLC, bypass security there, go wherever we are going, and on the return, catch the 22:30 flight home. This generally adds a very small price to the overall trip cost,(if flying Delta) but is easily justified when not paying for 2 nights hotels and/or parking for the duration.

I would think that many people who live near small 'feeder' airports can do similar things to save on parking and minimize away-from-home time.

Jim Ricks
 

Carolinian

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Kinston, NC has free parking at their airport, but now that DL has moved its flights to New Bern, which charges for parking, Allegiant is the only airline flying out of Kinston.
 

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We are in No. Ca. and usually use Sacramento airport. The parking fees just keep getting higher and higher. For major trips out of SFO or LAX we now use Modesto. United runs commuter service but only to those 2 airports. Parking is free. We just went on a 3 week trip booking RT out of Modesto. The bypass of the check-in desk & security lines at SFO alone was worth the price of the extra fare which was nominal.
 

Carol C

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Now if you lived near me, you could do exactly that. I frequently volunteer to take my girlfriends to the airport. Its a quick and easy trip for me, about 45 minutes round trip including drop off.

And out here, if you are over 65 you can get $40. worth of taxi tickets every two months for $10. Get a ride to the airport, and the way home costs you about $32., so you give the driver the whole $40.

Fern

That settles it...I'm moving to Vegas! :banana: :whoopie: :rofl:
 

isisdave

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Park in a nearby residential neighborhood, call a cab, and take off from there.

Most cities have regulations that limit parking on the street, typically to 72 hours. You may return to find your car "parked" somewhere even more expensive than the airport.
 

rsnash

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Most cities have regulations that limit parking on the street, typically to 72 hours. You may return to find your car "parked" somewhere even more expensive than the airport.

That's what I was thinking. Especially true anywhere in the NYC area.

Here's a tip that isn't free, but is frugal. Rent a car! We pick up a one way, one day rental at a local agency (we use Hertz, but Avis or Thrifty or Budget are good choices too. Not Enterprise, they charge an extra $100 for a one way rental) the day before our trip, then return it when we get to the airport. This costs us around $50 or less. Parking at a discount lot near Newark Airport is at least $15/day. We are about to go away for 8 days. Parking would cost us $120+. The one day rental is $50.52, a friend is picking us up on our return, but it would cost about $60 to rent the return. Damn airport fees! A taxi to/from EWR from our house is about $80 w/tip (each way).

It sounds like a wash cost wise, but is more convenient than worrying if the car service will get here on time. And the cost is a lot more if we were flying out of one of the NY airports. A car service from JFK would cost us over $100, but the car rental is the same price.
 

Talent312

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I do like the one-way car rental idea. We did that for a recent cruise out of Miami and a saved a bundle on the outrageous port fees.

Another idea for regional airports: If the airport has a General Aviation section, you could park at one of the flight-line operations where they'll assume that you're an owner or customer who's away on a flight. Pick one that has other overnight vehicles. But you could have a nice hike around to the commercial terminal.
 

caribbean

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I have not done this for a couple of years, but in the past I have parked free at the end of the lot at one of the Light Rail stations outside Baltimore and taken the rail to the airport. I would suggest checking their website to make sure this is still good before trying.
 

Carol C

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Most cities have regulations that limit parking on the street, typically to 72 hours. You may return to find your car "parked" somewhere even more expensive than the airport.

On the streets around many major airports, you'd find your car "parked" with no tires on it and maybe worse. :eek:
 

pranas

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Some airports let handicap travelers park free,
 

BondGuy

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Often car service shops will allow you a few extra days parking if you drop your car off for service.

So, plan for an oil change, brake job, etc. while away and save on parking costs.

However, if using a garage for the first time, make sure the prices are reasonable. Also, probably not a good idea to try this for the first time with a complete engine rebuild; start small and work up as you gain comfort with the shop. Finally, you want to be reachable so the shop can discuss and problems; you don't want to arrive to find your car still in pieces.
 
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