There are a lot of things to consider when booking a trip away, especially if you are flying somewhere.

Booking flights and accommodation are the two main things to consider, but what about getting to the airport and parking?

Travellers worry that parking at the airport is going to cost them an arm and a leg or think that to get a cheaper option you need to leave your car in a muddy field half an hour away.

This isn't the case. 

Barking and Dagenham Post: A number of airports across the UK offer 'budget' on-site parking.A number of airports across the UK offer 'budget' on-site parking. (Image: Canva)

Which? said there are a number of airports across the UK with 'budget' on-site parking that won't break the bank. 

The UK consumer champion researched the cheapest on-site and off-site parking at 10 of the UK’s most popular airports

From this research Which? have come up with six tips to help you find the cheapest airport parking deals.

How to find cheap airport parking deals?

On-site airport parking can be cheaper than off-site

Which? said: "It’s generally cheaper to park off-site than on-site, because on-site car parks are closer to the terminal.

"In the most extreme example we found, it’s a three-minute walk at Heathrow T4 versus up to 30 minutes on a shuttle from the EasyHotel. 

"However, to counter off-site competition, many airports now offer a ‘budget’ parking option."

Never just drive up and park

Which? said: "It may seem obvious, but definitely plan in advance.

"Not only does pre-booking guarantee you a parking space, but it’s also considerably cheaper.

"Some car parks even allow you to pre-book as little as two hours in advance.

"When choosing and booking, price comparison sites such as or are a good place to start if you want to see the range of options available.

"Sometimes there are exclusive deals, so always check multiple websites, including the airport’s own."

Barking and Dagenham Post: Which? said to plan in advance when it came to airport parking.Which? said to plan in advance when it came to airport parking. (Image: Canva)

Which is more expensive: self-park or meet-and-greet parking?

Which? said: "With most on-site and some off-site car parks you’ll be able to self-park, therefore keeping hold of your keys.

"Otherwise you have to leave your car and keys at a meet-and-greet reception and staff will park for you – which might also mean that they’ll move your car if they need to while you’re away.

"There’s not necessarily an issue with this, but it’s something to weigh up if you’d rather have peace of mind over price.

"We didn’t even find massive price differences between self-park or meet-and-greet parking so definitely factor this in if it’s an issue for you."

Consider hotel-package parking

Which? said: "Choosing a hotel-parking package is an alternative to traditional airport parking.

"However, it’s unlikely to be cheaper than just parking your car without a hotel stay.

"Even if you do find a good deal, be aware that not all parking is actually at the hotel you book with."

Other cheap alternatives to airport parking

Which? said: "Another option is parking in someone’s driveway or garage.

"Sites like or allow you to search for available spaces – usually from entrepreneurial private owners.

"This option is unlikely to be considerably cheaper than traditional airport parking and there are no security guarantees.

"While you’ll agree to a ‘lease agreement’ this option is probably not for the risk-averse."

How your flight delay could cost you more in airport parking

Which? said: "You could be charged if you turn up too early, or more likely, collect your car later than booked for –  fees are typically at the car park’s ‘on-the-gate’ daily rate.

"Some car parks may have a grace period where you’re covered for a certain amount of time, but always check the smallprint.

"Sadly, though, if your flight is delayed or cancelled and you have to pay for extra parking costs it's unlikely you'll be able to claim anything back from your airline other than the usual flight delay compensation.

"It’s also worth checking how frequent the parking transfer service is, especially if your flight is early in the morning or late at night."