The pleasure of air travel has been limited in recent years to the relief of finally getting through security and finally sitting down in the departure lounge, knowing you are clear of all the pre-flight worry. The stress of every moment leading up to that point – getting to the airport, checking in, processing luggage and running the gauntlet of ever-tightening security – has taken much of the enjoyment out of air travel. Few airports have put effort into alleviating this stress but those that have, such as Manchester Airport, have seen a marked improvement in passenger satisfaction.
Two measures at Manchester Airport have made a significant contribution to this rise in positivity: the ease of using trains to get to- and from the airport and their sophisticated systems of airport parking Manchester.
Stream-lined ticket services
Being a regional hub, serving massive airlines such as Emirates and Cathay Pacific and hoping to expand its offering into Asia, Manchester Airport has focused continuously on improving its service offerings throughout the past decade. In order to support those traveling last-minute or those newly arrived in the country, the airport has installed banks of ticket machines to service their train lines, which sees trains leaving the airport every ten minutes, during peak times. A dedicated information desk is manned throughout the day and into the evenings to offer assistance to travelers who may be unfamiliar with these ticket machines. Passengers can take trains directly from the airport into Manchester city center, to Leeds, Birmingham or various London stations.
As these are premium rail services, tickets are costly, however, the convenience of knowing that the trains are reliable, safe and comfortable is worth a huge amount to any traveler, whether you are arriving or departing.
For those who prefer to drive themselves or wish to fetch people personally at the airport, it is worth mentioning the sophisticated parking system at Manchester Airport. Making every effort to control the volume of traffic in and out of the airport precinct, the airport’s development team have aimed to incentivize pre-booking parking bays by adding services such as valet parking. These valets meet you at the terminal doors, taking your car to a reserved parking spot, which you have prepaid for, so there are no nasty surprises when you return. Even if you choose not to use the valet service, booking ahead of time allows a choice of zoned parking, ranging in distance from the terminal buildings. These operate in the same way that standard parking garages, with timed tickets which you pay for once your business at the airport is concluded. The major difference is that you are guaranteed a parking bay.
You are free to simply take your chances on any given day, but the airport’s website is at pains to state that parking spaces cannot be guaranteed without a booking.
Many airports have taken similar measures in recent years. Luton charges for stays longer than fifteen minutes in their pick-up-and-go area, which is fair enough when you consider that airports experience high traffic throughout any given day. They need to do what they can in order to keep traffic flowing. That said, Manchester Airport aims to add 3800 more parking spaces by 2023, a further indicator that this airport aims to continue upping its game.