Trade body urges Government to investigate airport drop-off fees  

By Lisa James
Home » Trade body urges Government to investigate airport drop-off fees  

The Business Travel Association (BTA) is demanding a Government investigation into ‘unfair and excessive drop-off and pick-up fees at UK airports’ and is asking the trade to support its campaign.

The BTA has published a White Paper, ‘Drop the Drop Off Fees’, in response to hikes in charges by as much as 25% this year at some UK airports.

The most expensive drop-off and pick-up fee is £17, at London Stansted Airport, a chart compiled by the BTA (below) for the White Paper shows.

BTA CEO Clive Wratten said the intention of the White Paper is to ‘urge the Government to launch a review into the principle and price of airport fees and to encourage airports to drop the charges altogether’.

Clive said: “It is utterly illogical that these fees have soared to such unprecedented levels. To get dropped off and picked up kerbside is a necessity for so many travellers.  

“The airport drop-off and pick-up fees only add more stress to travellers who have already faced too many challenges and uncertainties in recent years. Ultimately, these fees add another barrier to recovery for travellers and the travel sector. We urge UK airports to re-evaluate this policy and eliminate these fees altogether.”

Fees table, from the BTA’s White Paper, ‘Drop the Drop Off Fees’

The White Paper says the charges affect vulnerable members of society, including people with mobility difficulties or women travelling alone late at night, who rely on lifts and taxis as the only option where they feel safe.

There has also been an increase in people getting dropped off or picked up outside designated zones to avoid the charges and taking unsafe roads that were not designed for pedestrians.

In the White Paper, Clive said: “Airports claim that the higher drop-off and pick-up fees lead to more sustainable travel decisions by passengers, but, at the same time, they heavily promote discounted longer-term parking on site for customers – encouraging car journeys!

“Also, in most cases, no incentive is offered by the airports for the use of electric cars by making it free or lower cost to drop off or pick up in an electric car. This only serves to fuel suspicions that the drop-off and pick-up Fees are a revenue-raising measure rather than a green one.

“I conducted a LinkedIn poll on this issue recently, and the results were overwhelming. Out of the 466 respondents, 88% of them said that airport drop-off and pick-up fees should be abolished, 9% said that they were too expensive, and only 3% said that they agreed with them.

“These fees are not only a financial burden, but also a source of frustration and stress for travellers and their friends, families and business colleagues. They ruin what should be a simple and smooth start to a trip, also making goodbyes with loved ones harder and more stressful than they need to be.”

Click here for the White Paper.

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