Flying on miles and staying in hotels on points saves a lot of money. One of our biggest expenses every time we do hit the road, however, is parking at the airport. An Uber each way would cost us around $45 and MARTA (train) to the airport is oftentimes inconvenient as parking at a MARTA station is not free for longterm parking so we found that it sometimes costs more to park at a MARTA station (and times of the train in the evenings is often inconvenient).
Atlanta Airport has so many options for parking, but what are the best and cheapest places to park at Atlanta airport? What programs have great rewards for frequent parking? What is our favourite parking option at the Atlanta airport?
1. Hotel parking - Cheapest, least convenient, no rewards programs
We came across hotel parking in Atlanta early on after we had moved here. This website has the most comprehensive search function showing hotels around the airport that offer parking and free shuttles to the airport. Rates start at $3.25 per day with a flat $5.00 service charge per booking. The website shows the distance from the airport, the full cost due at booking and when parking, as well as the shuttle times.
Parking at these hotels is easy- once you find a spot you just have to go into the hotel and sign in (probably so they don’t tow you for parking illegally!). Pickup is easy too, once you get back to the hotel you just need to go to your car and leave the car park- at the gate you just give them your name and they will open the gate for you to be on your way.
The most important thing to check on is the time that the shuttles run (every 15 minutes, every 20 minutes, every half hour or every hour). It is extremely inconvenient to see your shuttle leaving the pick up area and then to have to wait up to an hour for the next one to arrive. A suggestion if you do miss your shuttle is to take an Uber- the hotels are so close that the cost would not be that much and if it is very hot or cold, you would save yourself from standing outside as the pickup areas for these shuttles are all outside the airport.
Since this is at hotels, there is no frequent park programs that you can sign up for.
2. Off airport parking - Lots of options, rewards programs available
We have been big fans of Park and Fly recently. Costco used to sell 6 days of parking for $29.00. These recently went out of stock and now they have a new offer for 5 days of parking for $39.00. Park and Fly in Atlanta had two locations- Park and Fly (Domestic terminal only) and Park and Fly Plus (Domestic and International terminal). The international terminal pick up is about a 15 minute drive from the Park and Fly Plus parking area.
There are many different companies offering off airport parking- Peachy, Park and Fly, Wally Park, Park N Ticket, The Parking Spot, PreFlight parking are three that you will predominantly see. They offer a variety of self park, valet, covered, and uncovered options and rates vary from $8.25 per day (Preflight Parking with a reservation and a Saturday night stay) to $16.95 per day (Park and Fly Plus, Valet covered parking).
All of them offer different amenities (some for additional fees) such as EV charging, water and newspapers, baggage check, pet boarding, oil changes and complimentary car washes to name a few.
As we always used the Costco coupons for the parking at Park and Fly, we were ineligible to receive the frequent park perks- but they all of the programs widely promote these.
3. On airport parking - Convenient, no frequent park programs
The Atlanta airport does have many on airport locations to park. Hourly parking is the most obvious that most people know about from picking up their friends or relatives, but there is also long term, economy parking available. At the domestic terminal, parking lots A and C cost $9 per day. At the international terminal, rates are $12 a day. We have never used these options so can’t review them, but there are no frequent park programs.
Just be sure you don’t park long term in the hourly spots as they charge a whopping $36 a day for this.
4. OUR WINNER- FAST PARK AND RELAX
Fast Park and Relax was developed for the corporate traveler with only carry-on luggage. They have 1686 spaces at the location close to the International Terminal and are adding 1000 more spaces in the fall 2018.
The obvious downside is that if you are flying domestically with luggage to check then you would need to take the airport connector from the international terminal to the domestic terminal. However, if flying internationally or with carry on luggage only then they are a clear winner.
We tried them out for the first time in May and were blown away by how convenient it was! They advertise that they are only three minutes away from the International Terminal so we put them to the test- It took 3 mins 55 seconds from their gate to the terminal (On a Friday evening of a holiday weekend). On the return it took 2 minutes 43 seconds from being picked up at the terminal to the time when we were in our car!!! Their shuttles will pick you up from where you park, and they always seem to be waiting once we return.
Rates are $10.50 per day and they offer a great rewards program- each day you stay earns you 1 point and you can redeem your points for the below:
8 points- 1 free day
20 points- 3 free days
40 points- 1 free week
(If you use this link, you will receive a free day of parking at Fast Park and Relax, and we will as well)