Hotel vs. Airport Parking: Which Is Right for You?   

Hotel vs Airport Parking: Which Is Right for You?

When planning a trip, there’s an endless list of logistics to consider. One of the most pressing decisions you’ll have to make revolves around transportation — how you’re going to get from point A to point B, what it’s going to cost you and where you’ll park when you travel. 

If you’re flying from Boston to your destination, you’ll typically have two choices for parking — a hotel or the Boston Logan International Airport. Both options allow you to park your vehicle and pick it up once you’re back from your trip. Learn more about the hotel and airport parking advantages and disadvantages to figure out the best option for you. Once you know the ins and outs of each choice, you can decide on a strategy to ensure a seamless trip experience!

Hotel Parking Pros and Cons 

Hotel parking can be an appealing option for many travelers looking to cut costs and optimize convenience. However, there are also several drawbacks to be aware of. Let’s look at some pros and cons of hotel parking. 

Advantages of Parking at a Hotel

Advantages of Parking at a Hotel

Advantages like convenience and flexibility make hotel parking an attractive option. You’ll be able to avoid airport parking stressors and take advantage of having a place to go in case of cancellations. Here’s an overview of some of the top benefits of hotel parking. 

1. Convenience on Departure Day

One of the most obvious advantages of the hotel park-and-fly strategy is convenience. Instead of driving your car to the airport and looking for a parking spot, you can comfortably find a spot at the hotel, likely booked days ahead of time. For some, this takes a lot of stress out of the journey. You’ll only need to find a shuttle to the airport and be confident that your car is safely parked back at the hotel. 

2. Flexible Arrangements

Flight delays happen, so it’s good to have an alternative plan just in case. Booking a spot at the airport might limit your ability to leave the airport while you wait for the next flight. Parking your car at a hotel parking lot gives you more opportunities to head back to your hotel room, relax and wait for the next flight. While re-checking into your room is not always possible, there’s more flexibility with this option, giving you some peace of mind during your journey. 

3. Possible Deals

There are often deals available for hotel parking at airports, making them attractive to travelers. However, it can be challenging to find hotels near Boston with free airport parking. Finding cheap hotel airport parking options at a nearby hotel can be a benefit during your travels. 

In addition, you may find packages that bundle your room stay with a parking spot for even greater cost savings. 

What to Consider Before Parking at a Hotel

Hotels with airport parking also come with drawbacks. The park, sleep and fly strategy has risks, like lack of security and limited shuttle busses. Consider these factors before making your choice.

1. The Parking Lot Isn’t Fenced In

One of the most significant issues with hotel parking is the lack of cover. Hotels typically provide open parking spaces without fencing, exposing your vehicle to the elements and other safety risks for an extended time. Some people may be comfortable with this risk, but if you’re in a questionable area or want to ensure your vehicle is safe at all times, you may want to invest in the safety of airport parking. 

2. Hotel Lots Lack Security

Hotels with airport parking also lack adequate security. Unsecured parking lots can encourage criminal acts, like break-ins, car theft, vandalism and gasoline theft. Airports usually have cameras and security teams to monitor vehicles throughout the night. If something happens, a security guard can intervene and stop break-ins and damages. Unfortunately, hotel airport parking doesn’t always offer that type of security. While you may pay less for parking, you’ll also risk your vehicle’s safety, ultimately leading to more costs down the line. 

If you’re someone who wants total confidence in your vehicle’s security during your trip, consider parking at the airport. 

What to Consider Before Parking at a Hotel

3. You Might Be Far From the Airport

Hotel parking puts you at a distance from the airport. Although the airport is usually close by, you’ll still rely on someone else to pick you up and take you where you need to go. This creates another obstacle in your travel plans and may require additional costs to cover fuel or mileage. 

4. Expect Few Shuttle Busses and a Lack of Availability

Parking at the hotel creates another issue — finding a way to get to the airport. Although hotel parking may offer you some conveniences, it also means you have to find a shuttle to get to your flight. While hotels differ on their shuttle policies, you might find many airport shuttles are infrequent and sometimes even late. If you’re flying at a peak time, such as the Fourth of July or before the Thanksgiving holiday, it’s also likely to be challenging to access e-hailing services. 

This creates another variable in your travel plans — one that could potentially add a lot of stress to your trip and even cause you to miss your flight. In the already chaotic travel world, a delayed shuttle or failure to hail a ride could be the thing that makes you miss your flight. Many people want a spot at the airport simply because it ensures they can get where they need to go without relying on another ride. 

5. Hotels Have Different Parking Policies 

One of the most challenging things about hotel airport parking is that each hotel has different policies. You might wonder how long you can park at a hotel or if you can even park in hotel parking lots. You’ll have to keep in mind things like safety, security and shuttle departure times, which takes some additional research and attention to detail. This only adds to the numerous things you need to research before a trip. Finding an airport parking spot may be more sensible if you don’t think you’ll have the time for extra research.

Hotel airport parking can offer a lot of benefits, including convenience and cost-effectiveness. If you can find Boston airport hotels with free parking or hotels with long-term parking, then hotel airport parking can be even more of a draw. However, airport parking at hotels also means dealing with varying policies and lacking safety — lots are open and usually lack adequate security. Your car will be exposed for days at a time. Catching a shuttle from a hotel may also be more challenging than expected.

Because of these complications with hotel airport parking, many people opt for the latter option — airport parking.

Hotels Have Different Parking Policies 

Airport Parking Pros and Cons 

Airport parking is a go-to option for many travelers because of the convenience it offers. Instead of worrying about getting to and from a hotel, you’ll be at the airport already. Without having to factor in additional time to get from the hotel to the airport, you’ll have the opportunity to grab a coffee or freshen up before your flight. Still, some may prefer hotel parking because of possible drawbacks airport parking provides. 

Below, we’ll take a more in-depth look at the pros and cons of airport parking.

Advantages of Parking at the Airport 

From perks like enhanced security to convenient shuttle access, there are multiple things to like about the airport parking option at Boston Logan International Airport. 

1. Airport Lots Are Safer

Many people wonder whether it is safe to park at the airport. Fortunately, one of the main advantages of airport parking lots is that they are surrounded by a secure fence. Instead of a hotel lot that is open to the elements and unprotected, airports offer the advantage of safety with a fenced-in, closed lot. This gives you a lot of confidence during your journey that your vehicle — and anything left inside — remain safe.

2. Airport Garages Offer Better Security

Airport parking lots are generally more secure than hotel lots. Airports usually have guards on duty and security cameras monitoring the on-site vehicles for safety. Hotels normally don’t offer this type of protection. 

If you want to make sure your car is protected at all times, you’ll likely want airport parking. Rather than worry about your vehicle during your whole trip, you can gain some more confidence in your car’s safety by parking in a closed lot with fencing. 

3. You Get Access to 24/7 Shuttle Service 

Once you’re at the airport, you can access shuttle service around the clock. While hotel parking lots offer infrequent shuttles that are often late, airport shuttles run continuously. Even if you miss one, you can expect the next shuttle soon. This adds some flexibility to your schedule and won’t throw you into a panic if you’re running behind.

Equally important is getting home quickly after a long flight. If you’re traveling with kids or pets, this is even more of a priority. Parking your car at the airport allows you to catch a shuttle soon after you’ve landed, get to your car and drive home. You can then enjoy a hot shower sooner rather than later after your travels. 

It's Less Hassle

4. It’s Less Hassle 

Airport parking takes the stress out of getting to and from your hotel. Since you’re already there, you’ll be prepared for any changes in your travel schedule. If your flight gets delayed, you can stay in the airport lounge for as long as you’d like. You can even sleep overnight at the Boston Logan International Airport if needed, though you’ll have to find a spot in the pre-security area.

Ultimately, this means you’ll be in the right place when your flight comes instead of waiting idly at a hotel. A shuttle service makes things even easier by taking you where you need to go. Whether you’re flying American, JetBlue, Frontier or Delta, shuttle services make it easy to find your terminal at Boston Logan International Airport.

You can get there early and stay at the airport after arrival for as long as you’d like. Airport parking eliminates an extra step from your travel plans, helping you feel relaxed before your flight. For some, this is reason enough to get a parking spot at the airport. 

5. Airport Parking Offers Convenient Amenities and Services

Aside from the convenience of a continuous shuttle service, airport parking offers several other amenities to make your trip even easier. You can pick a spot on the day of your flight, or you can book a spot ahead of time with an airport parking provider and enjoy additional benefits. 

Here’s a breakdown of some of the services you can enjoy when you book a spot with a reputable airport parking provider

  • Luggage assistance: Whether you’re lugging around one or three heavy bags, shuttle drivers can assist you with your luggage. This makes getting on and off the shuttle that much easier. 
  • Accessible vehicles: People who use wheelchairs can board accessible shuttles or vans. 
  • Vehicle cleaning and detailing: Getting your car cleaned while you’re away is an effective use of time and gives you something to look forward to post-trip. If you’re coming home to chilly temperatures after a nice and warm vacation, even the simplest things can make that transition easier.
  • Loyalty points: If you travel frequently for work or pleasure, you can earn loyalty points when you stick with one airport parking provider. The rewards you earn can help ensure there’s more room in your budget for holiday treats. 
  • No-move policy: When you book with a reliable airport parking company, you can rest easy knowing that your car will be in the exact parking bay where you left it. Knowing where to find your car makes leaving the airport a much simpler task. 

6. You Can Make Online Reservations

Reserving a parking spot ahead of your trip helps minimize pre-flight stress. Additionally, if you encounter any changes to your travels — such as changed flight times — you can manage your reservation with a few clicks. Simply update your booking to reflect your new arrival times. 

If you’re traveling over the holiday season or other peak times, an online booking system is especially useful. Booking and paying via the portal helps you avoid lengthy queues that could cause further delays. 

7. There Are Multiple Parking Options

Whether you’re flying out of Boston Logan for a one-day business trip or a three-week vacation in Southeast Asia, there are various parking options to meet your needs. Here’s a quick overview of the options you can select: 

  • Long-term: Anything over seven days constitutes long-term parking. Whether you’re away for a few weeks or months, this is a secure option to meet your needs. 
  • Short-term: The short-term parking option is an ideal choice for business trips or holidays spanning a few days.
  • Economy: Economy parking options can help you save time and money if you want to fit airport parking into your travel budget. 
  • Pre-paid: Paying for parking ahead of your trip helps you save precious time and money. You’re also able to leave the airport directly after you’ve landed, ensuring you get home quickly.

Hotel vs. Airport Parking: Which Is Right for You?   What to Consider Before Parking at the Airport

Even with all the benefits of airport parking, there are drawbacks to consider. Look at costs, and think about the added time it will take to park at the airport. 

1. Potential Costs 

One of the main disadvantages of airport parking is the accompanying cost. Although airport parking costs vary, they can be costly. However, you pay for the convenience and efficiency of already being at the airport, so many people consider the costs worth it. 

In addition, the ability to park your car in a secure lot means there is less chance of theft or other damages that will result in costly repairs or even having to replace your vehicle. 

2. Time Spent Parking

Although parking at the airport offers the convenience of already being near your terminal, you still need to find a parking spot. This adds time to your departure — time you’ll have to factor in when leaving. The challenge of finding a spot varies depending on what time of day it is. For example, if your flight leaves at a peak time, you may have more trouble finding a spot and navigating traffic. 

Finding a spot at the airport can add some stress to your journey — make sure you plan ahead and allocate enough time to find a parking spot. Planning accordingly will help you get to your gate in time.

You may be able to liaise with a shuttle service that can handle your vehicle for you once you get to the airport. This eliminates the need to find a spot — just take your vehicle to the shuttle service lot, and they’ll find your spot while you are transported to your gate. This makes the trip a lot easier and cuts down on wasted time. 

3. Differing Rates 

Airports have different rates based on how long you’ll keep a vehicle in a spot. It may take some extra time to figure out which option works best for you and fits into your budget. Rates vary from short-term parking over a couple of days to long-term parking that may span weeks. 

What to Consider Before Parking at the Airport

How to Decide Between Hotel Parking or Airport Parking 

If you’re still unsure whether to go with hotel parking or airport parking, that’s OK — it comes down to your unique situation. Use a few actionable steps to lead you toward the right decision. 

1. Consider Your Needs 

What do you consider most important during traveling? Make a list of your top priorities and relate it to hotel and airport parking — you should find some common themes to help you pick one over the other. 

Some might look for a cost-effective option while working under a strict budget. Some people may prefer to search for the easiest and most convenient solution for their travels. Whatever your top priority, identify it before continuing with your decision.

2. Determine Your Budget 

Don’t forget to budget for parking when organizing travel expenses. Think about how much you’re willing to pay for parking and factor this into your decision. Although the final amount may vary, having an idea of approximate costs narrows your decision. Consider the following transportation expenses while budgeting your trip:

  • The commute to and from the hotel, airport or both — including the cost of fuel and highway tolls
  • Hourly, daily and overnight parking fees wherever you choose to leave your vehicle
  • Your total travel distance before departure and when you return
  • Fluctuating fuel costs and peak-season pricing

3. Think About Safety

Safety should always be a top priority when it comes to travel. When you’re on a flight, you shouldn’t have to wonder whether your vehicle is safe in an open parking lot. Whether you’re on a business trip or taking a much-needed vacation, you want a clear mind to focus on your destination. In many cases, the advanced security of an airport or shuttle lot makes them some of the best parking options. 

You can rest easy knowing that your car will be in good hands while you’re away. 

4. Consider Convenience 

Another significant factor in travel is convenience. Boston Logan has been seeing a steady flow of passengers, with authorities screening around 70,000 passengers daily in the summer of 2023. Navigating large crowds when you’re rushing to your gate can be stressful, so it’s important to make your journey as convenient as possible. Think about each step of your departure day and how you can break it into manageable chunks. Getting rid of extra trips from the hotel to the airport can be a convenient way to make your day flow easier. 

Airport parking takes you right to where you need to be. With a shuttle service, you can then go straight to your terminal. It’s a simple, convenient solution that takes a lot of stress out of getting to your flight. 

5. Do Your Research

Make sure you look at deals or prices for parking at hotels and airports. Guides like this one are great resources to sort through the pros and cons to see which is right for your situation.

Find a reliable service to help you find a spot and take you to your gate. Working with a trusted service is an effective way to remove travel stress and put you in a good place on departure day. 

Should You Choose Hotel Parking or Airport Parking?

Planning a trip is often a time-consuming process. It involves a lot of different logistics and factors. In planning your travels, try to control the variables you can so the journey goes smoothly. Hotel airport parking can be attractive due to its cost-effectiveness, but parking at the airport is usually the best way to go for a few different reasons:

  • Convenience: When you park at the airport, you eliminate another variable in your travel journey — getting from the hotel to your gate. This adds convenience during your trip and lets you plan for any hiccups. Once you’re at the airport, you can wait comfortably until departure. 
  • Easy navigation: Since you’re already at the airport, you’ll have easy access to your gate. You won’t have to worry about catching shuttle A or finding a way to get to terminal C — you’ll have plenty of time to get where you need to go with ease. 
  • Safety: Airport parking lots offer enclosed areas with fences and security for optimal safety, but this is uncommon for hotel lots. Airport lots will make you feel better about leaving your vehicle behind. 

When it comes to travel, it’s better to choose the safer option — airport parking can give you that. An even better strategy is finding a shuttle company to help guide you through the parking process so you don’t have to waste time going back and forth between airport parking and hotels!

Hotel vs. Airport Parking: Which Is Right for You?   Reserve Your Parking Spot With Park Shuttle & Fly Today

There’s nothing more exciting than getting on a plane and heading to a new destination — don’t let travel stress impact your enjoyment. Park Shuttle & Fly has a comprehensive solution that allows you to book your spot before you even leave. You can meet one of our attendants at our lot, where we’ll take your car and shuttle you right to your gate. Once you arrive back in Boston, we’ll return your vehicle. 

It’s a simple, effective solution to parking your vehicle. Avoid unnecessary stress about airport parking. Book your spot and meet us at the lot on the day of your departure. From there, you can enjoy your trip free from concerns about your vehicle. Make a reservation today! 

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Traffic Notice:

The Sumner Tunnel closure from 11pm Fridays – 5am Mondays has caused an increase in traffic from Logan Airport to our parking facility during the afternoons and evenings on Saturdays & Sundays. Please give yourself extra time if traveling to and from Logan during these times.

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