Manchester

Manchester Airport axes free 'kiss and fly' drop-off parking lanes

Manchester Airport Image copyright Manchester Airport
Image caption Traffic congestion caused by drop-offs at Terminal 3

Manchester Airport says it is scrapping its free "kiss and fly" drop-off lanes in order to ease traffic congestion.

Unless they pay £3 to stop for five minutes outside the terminals, bus and train stations, from June their passengers will have to catch a free shuttle bus from about a mile away.

Up to 10 minutes' parking will cost £4.

Regular taxi drivers will be offered a discount while pick-up fees remain the same - £4 for up to 30 minutes in the airport's multi-storey car parks.

Image copyright Manchester Airport
Image caption Traffic congestion caused by drivers dropping off passengers for flights

Airport officials claim "extreme congestion" has left its terminal forecourts "broken".

Their research estimates that increased passenger numbers next year could see the "kiss and fly" lanes experience 20-40% more cars than they can handle.

At peak times, one in five drivers has to do an extra lap of the airport before they can find a drop-off space, even though 84% stay for less than five minutes.

The free "drop-off and ride" service will be introduced in the long-stay Jet Park 1 in Thorley Lane.

Image copyright Manchester Airport
Image caption The new free drop-off parking area is about a mile from the terminals

This add seven minutes to passengers' journeys to cover the half mile to Terminal 2, and 12 minutes to Terminals 1 and 3, which are more than a mile away.

Chief operating officer Tricia Williams said: "As passenger numbers have grown, we have increasingly experienced major congestion problems on our terminal forecourts, exacerbated by a high percentage of visitors repeatedly re-circulating at peak times.

"The simple fact is our forecourts were not designed to handle the number of vehicles they do today and do not have the capacity to cope with any further growth in the number of people being dropped-off immediately outside our terminals."

Image copyright Manchester Airport
Image caption Police officers monitor traffic at Terminal 3

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