“How to get a discount on Gatwick Airport car parking” is a difficult and long-winded question. This article has a particular focus on the ‘miles and points’ angles but there should be an option for everyone below.
Save money on official Gatwick Airport parking
The official Gatwick Airport car parks (click here) are certainly not the cheapest option but are convenient.
Earn Avios from offsite airport parking
You will usually save money by parking at an unofficial car park near an airport, although the trade off is a longer transfer time to and from the terminal.
ParkVia is the British Airways Executive Club parking partner and you earn 5 Avios per £1 when you book with them. You do not need to be flying with British Airways. The booking page for these offers is here.
(Interestingly, ParkVia has just been bought by Manchester Airports Group, which now feels confident enough post covid to be making acquisitions.)
Earn Virgin Points from offsite airport parking
All Flying Club members get a discount – even those on the free Red level – and you will earn 250 to 500 Virgin Points depending on what service you book. ‘Meet and Greet’ is available.
Use Tesco Clubcard vouchers for offsite airport parking
If you are stuck for a good way to use your Clubcard points now that Avios has left the scheme, Tesco Clubcard has a partnership with airport parking group APH. You can see details of the deal here.
You receive 3x the face value of your Clubcard vouchers if you redeem them for APH parking. This drops to 2x from 14th June 2023.
Use Zipcar Flex and avoid parking altogether
If you are a member of the Zipcar car sharing club, you may be familiar with Zipcar Flex. This allows you to pick up a Zipcar as usual and take it on a one way journey, with no requirement to drop it back at its original location.
The only rule is that, obviously, the place where you drop the car has to be an approved Zipcar Flex location. You can find these at Heathrow and at Gatwick Airport’s North Terminal.
Earn hotel points with ‘hotel and parking’ packages
I wrote an article here on the semi-secret ‘park and fly’ rates offered by IHG One Rewards via a little-known corner of their website. You may find that you can book a hotel room for the night before plus solve your parking problem for less than the cost of an official car park.
The benefit of booking an ‘official’ IHG package rather than using a consolidator like Holiday Extras is that you will earn IHG points for your stay and your elite benefits should be provided if you have status. The booking page is here.
Another option is Bloc Hotel, located inside (literally inside) the South Terminal. It offers Park, Sleep, Fly packages in partnership with Official London Gatwick Parking, using either the North or South short stay car parks. Guests also receive fast-track security vouchers.
Get an ‘under the carpet’ deal at one of the Gatwick hotels
For a three week stay or longer, a monthly subscription slot booked via YourParkingSpace is likely to be the cheapest option. You can cancel your subscription with 30 days notice.
…. or borrow the drive of someone nearby
There is no simple answer to the cheapest airport parking at Gatwick Airport or indeed elsewhere in the UK.
It is all about the trade off between the distance from the airport and the price you want to pay. If you would need a hotel the night before anyway, then a ‘hotel plus parking’ package is probably your best option – but remember that these packages, unless booked direct, are unlikely to earn hotel points or give you elite status benefits.
If you are price conscious, then don’t be distracted by the points on offer from various operators like Holiday Extras. Focus on the bottom line price.
If you are spending your employers money, of course, the official Gatwick car parks are the quickest and easiest choice as well as arguably the most secure.