Free drop off at Manchester Airport, Gatwick, Heathrow and all terminals

With air passengers keen to avoid packed trains and buses as the Omicron variant hits the UK - with returning air passengers allowed use public transport before being tested - many are asking family and friends to take them to the terminal - but what airports offer free drop off points to help avoid big bills? We have a full list of free and paid options at UK airport such as Manchester, Gatwick, Heathrow, Stansted, Luton and many more.

Drop off zone at an international airport - but what are the charges?Find out how much you will have to pay for airport drop off charges - and avoid big bills  (Credit: Pixabay)

How much to drop off passengers at UK airports

Here we look at prices charged at individual airports across the UK for drivers dropping off passengers ahead of flight...

Aberdeen Airport

Drivers dropping passengers off at Aberdeen Airport will have the option of £3.00 for 10 minutes in the Express Drop Off or 30 minutes free in the Long Stay car park. See table below for more information.

Belfast City (George Best) Airport

Drop off at Belfast City Airport is free for up to 10 minutes, after which you will pay £3.00 for 11 - 30 minutes. If you need more time, 30 - 60 minutes costs £6.00. See table below for more information.

Belfast International Airport

Using a car to set passengers down at Belfast International will cost £1.00 for 0 - 10 minutes, £3.00 for 10 - 20 minutes and £5.00 for 20 - 60 minutes. Keep an eye on your watch though, exceeding 60 minutes will cost a whopping £35.00. More information on the table below.

Birmingham Airport

Motorists dropping family and friends at Birmingham Airport will benefit from up to 20 minutes free, before charges starting at £1.00 for 20 - 25 minutes kick in. These rise sharply with 45 - 50 minutes costing £20. Get full pricing on the table below.

Bournemouth Airport

At Bournemouth Airport, drop off costs from £3.00 for 30 minutes, rising to £6.50 for 30 - 60 minutes. See further details on table below. 

Bristol Airport

The Express Drop off costs £4.00 up to 10 minutes, £6.00 for 10 - 20 minutes. The Waiting Zone car park is free for up to 60 minutes. See links to car parks in table below. 

Cardiff Airport

Drivers get up to 5 minutes free in the drop off area at Cardiff Airport, with £3.00 added for every 10 minutes thereafter. Details of this and pick up charges can be found in the table below. 

Doncaster Sheffield (Robin Hood)

The Express Drop Off and Pick Up area is £4.00 for up to 10 minutes. Short Stay Pick Up is up to 15 minutes free, then £5.00 for up to 30 minutes. More details in the table following below.

Durham Tees Airport

Dropping off at Durham Tees Airport will cost £2.50 for up to 15 minutes, then £5.00 for 15 - 60 minutes. More information in our table below. 

East Midlands International Airport

Head to the Rapid Drop Off, where you will pay £5.00 for 15 minutes, increasing by £1.00 per minute thereafter. The Short Stay car park is £6.00 for up to 30 minutes. The Long Stay car park is free for up to 60 minutes. Get more details in the table below.

Edinburgh Airport

The Drop Off Zone is £4.00 for up to 10 minutes, while the Long Stay car park offers free parking for 30 minutes - with transfer to the terminal by bus. Find further details below. 

Exeter Airport 

Car Park 1 offers up to 30 minutes for £3.00, with the same for pick up in Car Park 2. Links to the airport can be found in the table below.

Glasgow Airport

Drop off charges start at £4.00 for up to 10 minutes - but eco-friendly drivers in electric cars can pre-register and get 10 minutes of parking for free. Short Stay car park offers up to 20 minutes for £5.00. See the table below for more details. 

Glasgow Prestwick Airport

The drop off and pick up area cost £2.00 for up to 30 minutes for those setting down friends and family. The table below has more information. 

Inverness Airport

If you are dropping off at Inverness Airport, you can enjoy free parking for up to 10 minutes in the Short Stay car park. See below for more.

Leeds Bradford Airport

Heading to Leeds Bradford Airport to drop passenger off? Look for up to 60 minutes of free parking in the parking zone. Table below includes links.

Liverpool Airport

Express Drop off and Pick offer up to 10 minutes' parking for £4.00, jumping to £10.00 for 10 - 20 minutes. Drop off 2 is free for up to 40 minutes. See below for more details and links.

London City Airport

Find free drop off on the forecourt next to the terminal. Short Stay car park offer up to 10 minutes' parking for £3.80. More below in the table.

London Gatwick Airport

The Drop Off zone for both the North and South terminals (when open) are paid by entering your registration online after your visit - so turn up and drop off, but don't forget to afterwards. Charges are £5 for 10 minutes and £1 added for each additional minute up to 20 minutes. A maximum charge of £25 is charged for stays exceeding 30 mins. Unattended cars could be towed away. 

London Heathrow Airport

All terminals have the same charges for drop off. Short stay is £5.10 for up to 60 minutes, with long stay free for up to 30 minutes. Check links in table for bus transfer requirements. 

London Luton Airport

Drop off charges for Luton Airport as follows. Mid Stay car park free for up to 15 minutes, and £3.00 for 25 minutes - a bus transfer is required to the terminal. Long stay is free for up to 60 minutes, also with a bus transfer. The closer Drop off zone is £5.00 for 10 minutes. More info in table. 

London Southend Airport

Expect to pay up to £4.00 for 10 minutes' parking in Short Stay, with Long Stay 3 free for the first 15 minutes. More information below. 

London Stansted Airport 

Drop off at this airport is £7.00 for up to 15 minutes in the Express Set Down, with more than 15 minutes being charged  at £25.00. There is also a £20.00 charge if a vehicle re-enter the zone within 30 minutes of leaving. The Express Set Down will be closed due to works from 9th of November 2021 from 08:00 – 12:00. The Mid Stay car park is free for up to 60 minutes. See the table below for more. 

Manchester Airport

Dropping off friend and family at Manchester Airport costs £5.00 for up to 5 minutes in the Short stay drop off, rising to £6.00 for up to 10 minutes' parking. The free drop off area accesses the terminals via bus.  More below in the table. 

Newcastle International Airport

Drop off charges in the short stay car park start at £6.00 for up to 15 minutes, increasing to £8.00 for stays of up to 30 minutes, Short Stay 2 offer free parking for up to 15 minutes. Express Parking is £3.00 for 10 minutes and £5.00 for up to 30 minutes. 

Newquay International Airport

Dropping off here will allow you 30 minutes of free parking. See the table below for airport links. 

Southampton Airport

Setting down passengers at Southampton's airport, will cost £2.00 for 15 minutes' parking. More below. 

Is airport drop off free on Christmas Day?

No. Drivers will need to pay charges where applicable on Christmas Day and across the festive season.

Quick at-a-glance guide to drop off charges at airports around the UK



Aberdeen Airport Express Drop Off:
£3.00 up to 10 minutes.
Long Stay:
Free for 30 minutes
Belfast City (George Best) Airport Short Stay Car Park:
Free for up to 10 minutes.
11 - 30 minutes: £3.00.
30 minutes - 60 minutes : £6.00
Belfast International Airport Drop off/Pick up Zone:
0 - 10 minutes £1.00
10 - 20 minutes £3.00
20 - 60 minutes £5.00
1 hr - 24 hrs £35.00
Birmingham Airport Birmingham Airport Drop Off
0 - 20 minutes: Free
20 - 25 minutes: £1.00
25 - 30 minutes: £3.00
30 - 35 minutes: £5.00
35 - 40 minutes: £10.00
40 - 45 minutes: £15.00
45 - 50 minutes: £20.00
Bournemouth Airport Pick-up and drop off area
Up to 30 minutes: £3.00
Up to 1 hour: £6.50
Bristol Airport Express drop off:
Up to 10 minutes: 
10 – 20 minutes: £6.00
Waiting Zone car park: up to 1 hour free.
Cardiff Airport Drop off area:
Up to 5 minutes: Free
£3 for every 10 minutes thereafter
Pick up area:
Up to 10 minutes£1 for .
Long stay: free for 20 minutes.
Doncaster Sheffield
(Robin Hood)
Express Drop off/Pick up:
Up to 10 minutes: £4.00
Short Stay pick-up:
Up to 15 minutes: Free
Up to 30 minutes: £5.00
Durham Tees Airport Drop off:
Up to 15 minutes: £2.50
15 to 60 minutes: £5.00
East Midlands International Airport Rapid drop off
Up to 15 minutes: £5.00 for 15 minutes (then £1 per minute after)
stay car park:
Up to 30 minutes: £6.00
Long stay:
Free for 1 hour
Edinburgh Airport Drop off Zone: 
Up to 10 minutes: £4.00
Pick up zone:
Up to 10 minutes: £4.00 
Long stay:
Free for the first 30 minutes (via bus)
Exeter Airport Car Park 1: 
Up to 30 minutes: £3.00 for drop off
Car Park 2:
Up to 30 minutes: £3.00 for for pick up
Glasgow Airport Drop off and pick up area:
Up to 10 minutes: £4.00 
Pre-registered EV owners get up to 10 minutes free in drop off pick up area
Short stay car park: 
Up to 20 minutes:  £5.00 
Glasgow Prestwick Airport Drop off and pick up area: 
£2.00 for 30 minutes.
Inverness Airport Short Stay Car Park: 
Free for up to 10 minutes
Leeds Bradford Airport Free for up to one hour in the parking zone
Liverpool Airport Express Drop off and Pick up:
£4.00 up to 10 minutes - £10 up to 20 minutes
Drop off 2: 
Free up to 40 minutes
London City Airport Free drop off on the forecourt next to the terminal building - vehicles must not be left alone or fines will be issued
Short stay car park: 
£3.80 up to 10 minutes
London Gatwick Airport Drop off zone for both North and South terminals (when in use). Charges paid online after using the drop off zone by entering registration number.
£5 for 10 minutes
£1 for each additional minute up to 20 minutes.
Maximum charge of £25 and maximum stay of 30 mins.
London Heathrow Airport All terminals
 Short Stay Car Park: 
£5.10 for 1 hour 
Long stay car park:
Free for 30 minutes
London Luton Airport Mid Stay Car Park: 
Free for 15 minutes
£3.00 for 25 minutes (bus)
Long Stay:
Free for 60 minutes (bus)
Drop off zone: 
£5.00 for 10 minutes
London Southend Airport Short Stay 1: £4.00 for up to 10 minutes.
Long Stay 3: Free for first 15 minutes (in any 24-hour period).
London Stansted Airport Express Set Down
Up to 15 mins : £7.00
Over 15 mins - £25.00
(£20 charge if vehicle re-enters within 30 minutes)
The Express Set Down will be closed due to works from 9th of November 2021 from 08:00 – 12:00
Free drop off:
60 minutes free Mid Stay car park
Manchester Airport Short Stay drop off: 
£5.00 for up to 5 minutes
£6.00 for 10 minutes
Free drop off area: 
Free (bus shuttle to terminal)
Pick up:
Arrival car park and multi-storey facility: £6.00 up to 30 minutes.
Newcastle International Airport Short Stay Car Park 1: £6.00 up to 15 minutes
£8 for up to 30 minutes
Short Stay Car Park 2: 
Free up to 15 minutes.
Express Parking: 
£3.00 up to 10 minutes
£5.00 up to 30 minutes.
Newquay Cornwall Airport 30 minutes of free parking
Southampton Airport £2.00 for 15 minutes
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