[Hack] Melbourne Airport T123 & T4 Parking 2.5 Hours for $7 Anytime (Online Booking Required)

3240

Please advise if this doesn't belong here, but a neat workaround if you need to park at Melb airport to send someone off or meet someone arriving.

Drive up rates at T123 are $12 for the first hour and $24 for 90 mins. But if you book online you get a grace period of 1 hour either side of your booked entry and exit times. So say you book 3pm to 3.30pm. You can enter as early as 2pm and exit up until 4.30pm without incurring additional charges. All for $7. Same applies to T4.

Related Stores

Melbourne Airport
Melbourne Airport

Comments

  •  

    Cool thanks, will try it in a few weeks.

  •  

    Have you checked that the one hour after grace period is not brought forward to begin one hour after your actual entry time? This seems like a surprising result.

    • +6 votes

      T&Cs state entering early doesn't impact your exit grace period. Take the scenario of booking for a 3 day stay. Entering an hour early doesn't change your exit time. The same rules apply to all bookings, irrespective of duration.

  •  

    Does it have any validity date..as it can be used rarely though with me.

  • +11 votes

    Can confirm, have done this a couple of times in the past and has worked consistently.

    Pay for half hour, get 2.5 hours parking - makes airport runs more reasonable/tolerable.

    • +13 votes

      Why didn't you let us know? Leave your OzBargain license on the way out please.

      • +1 vote

        Because then the loophole will get closed just like any other good deal. I have a few hacks that I hope nobody will ever post here because of this very reason.

  • +2 votes

    Great find.
    I wish I knew this earlier.
    Been paying full price for up to 3hrs everytime
    Thanks

  • +1 vote

    Does anyone know if this works in Brisbane Airport? I will check their T&Cs when I can but just wondering.

    •  

      I have "overstayed" on a booked period in the long term by what would have been less than an hour and was charged extra when leaving. It was a while back so don't have exact details. There is some grace period but I don't think it will be an hour either side.

      Only way you'll really know is to try and be prepared to pay the extra if it doesn't work out.

      •  

        As per OP's confirmation from reviewing the terms, if the terms are quite clear and the machine tries to charge you extra, you should call an attendant and argue.

  •  

    I have booked online for car parking in the CBD as well and remember noticing some notes about a 1 hour grace period. So probably can be done at other car park booking sites as well potentially. Anyway nice hack! I hate having to pay $20 or whatever whenever I go to pickup or drop someone off at Tullamarine

  •  

    Still requires advance planning though. The website doesn't take bookings with less than 2 hours notice.

    • +8 votes

      How many flights are you booking that depart in less than 2 hours?

      • +32 votes

        Yes I could confidently say I've never been randomly driving past the airport and thought, "I'll just pop in".

      • +3 votes

        Planning arrivals is a challenge as a flight could be delayed and you can't change a pre-booked parking time.

        • +7 votes

          If you pay an extra dollar you can book a flexi rate which you can cancel anytime prior to entering. And if you get delayed after arrival then you'll pay the same as you would have had you not prebooked.

        •  

          Just checked. You can basically book up to 3 hours before the booked time.

          If you are meeting an international flight that's enough time that it's already in the air. So you should have a good idea of it's arrival time.

        •  

          @sane:

          Use Flightradar to help estimate arrival time.

    • +1 vote

      So when you say advance planning, you mean similar to the kind of advanced planning you need to do when booking a flight?

  •  

    Awesome hack! Thanks for sharing.

  •  

    I did this last year, and got scared as I was over my 30minute pre-booked time, but I still got out :)

    •  

      Even if you're 30 mins over the 1hr grace period they're not going to trap you forever….
      They just charge you the extra.

  •  

    Fyi this also applies to private parking companies Secure Parking and Wilson's Parking. Wilson's is 1h grace period. Secure parking used to be 30m, but looks like it may have reduced to 15m

  • +1 vote

    Nah!! I would still try to coordinate pickups and drop offs instead of giving these leaches any money. They got T4 now and the car park is empty.

    • +5 votes

      20 minute free park and wait area is handy. If there's no one behind me when I arrive I also idle in front of the boom gate and read all the T&C's thoroughly, that gives me another 10 minutes free.

      • +4 votes

        My MO for the free parka and wait, wait for 18 min, go out (20 second loop) and come back in again for another 18 min. I think my record is 4 times due to a delayed flight.

        OzB has thought me well.

      •  

        Great idea!!!

  •  

    Awesomeness, thanks OP.

  •  

    This is great! I want to try this next time I pick someone up from the airport. How does this work? I understand that you put in your registration when you book online. Do you just skip the pay station and go directly to the exits (assuming you're within the 1hr grace period) with the ticket?

    • +1 vote

      you just use your chosen credit/debit card on entry/exit, it works as your ticket

    • +1 vote

      You book online with a credit card. Then when you go through the entry and exit gates, instead of taking a ticket, you insert and remove the same credit card used to make the booking.

  •  

    OMG. Thanks for letting us know. I have to go to airport on avg around 8 times a year. (mother-in-law flying in and out).
    Nervous to try out, however will be testing this on Friday. (although I don't really need 2.5hr for a pickup, unless the plane is late: Last pick up the plan due to Melb fob meant 5hr delay)

  • +1 vote

    Also note, you can also go to the 4hr short stay for $10. They have a shuttle bus leaving every 10 mins.
    https://www.melbourneairport.com.au/Passengers/Parking/value...

    (This is a simple drive in and pay. You can't pre-book this online)

  • +1 vote

    Also for those wanting to double check: Here is what Melb airport officially state in their FAQ:
    You can enter the car park within 1 hour either side of your confirmed booking time for no additional charge. If you enter outside of this grace period, your credit card will be debited with the cost of the additional time spent in the car park, based on the overstay rates.

    •  

      Thanks.
      I always thought the grace period only relates to the entry time, and this quote seems to agree with that:
      "…can enter the car park within 1 hour either side of your confirmed booking time…".
      So only the entry has the grace period?

  • +1 vote

    Also, be careful with the 10min short stay. It may be obvious to many, but its really UP TO 10mins. Last time I tried, I timed it VERY TIGHT to the second and I think I must have been 3 seconds over. The ticket was printed to the minute and was exactly 10mins (no seconds) and I was charged $10. I tried to challenge it, however got the typical response of: That it was correct and I was charged accordingly!.

    Also note, 10 minutes isn't enough time for you to park, run inside to find your loved one, run back to the carpark, load up the luggage and then drive out to the gate!. They need to make this a 20 minute pickup!!

  •  

    In any case, hope the above helps everyone make the right parking decisions from my lessons learnt! Good luck!

  • +2 votes

    Absolutely any way of shoving it to these profiteering son of b@%$ches is good IMHO

  • +1 vote

    Not a hack per se, but a feature, as this has been the case for a very long time (re: year(s)) and they encourage pre-booking. In saying that I've used this maybe twice (ever) and in all other instances pay $0 for the Ring & Ride option :D.

  •  

    Hi,
    Just booked for tomorrow. Usually they allow you to park in T123, however they didn't give me the option and only allowed me T4 parking! WTF?
    Booked b/w 9:30am and 10:00am.
    Looks like they are reserving T123 for Premium and Valet!

    Another questionable change from Melbourne airport without notifying customers.

  • +1 vote

    Terminals 123 not showing up in search results. Only Premium T123 showing up at $20. Anyone else having the same issue?

    • +1 vote

      I’d say this has been ozbargained

    • +1 vote

      Must be related to the dates you chose; I put in some dates in Aug and the result showed all T123, T4, plus the long-terms + others.

    •  

      I had the same problem when I had a look last night, but it seems to be working now.

  •  

    Simple calculation can be -
    Book a parking starting 90 minutes after the flight arrival time.

    For example -
    Flight land time: 8 PM
    Parking start time/end time to be booked : 9:30 PM to 10 PM
    You can enter car park at: 8:30 PM (Assuming enough time given till flight lands and bags are collected and also minor delays)
    You can leave the car park by: 11 PM

    •  

      I have no problem getting $7 30 min at T123 for tomorrow. Select terminal first (T1 Qantas), entry date and time, exit date and time and "get my quote". Shows up no problem

  •  

    Is this hack works on Sydney airport too?

  • +1 vote

    Thanks!!! I just tried it this morning and it works!!!

  •  

    Great hack! Just booked for tomorrow!

  •  

    Sorry for some reason didn't work for me :( I made booking last night & used same Amex cc to enter & exit but for some reason got charged $12 again. In total it cost me around $20. I entered & exit parking within 1.5hour.

  • -1 vote

    Even for i could able to see the $7 for 2.30 hours parking. I am trying to book on 16th from 1.30 pm to 4.00 pm. It came to 22$. Am I missing something? :(

    •  

      If you plan to be at the airport from 1:30 to 4pm, book 2:30 to 3pm (30 minutes). The one hour grace period on either side allows entry at 1:31 and an exit of 3:59. I like to err on the safe side.

  •  

    Thanks, heaps bg. Not I got it and done the booking.

  • +1 vote

    Thanks OP! T1, T2, and T3 online booking sold out 3 hours prior to flight arrival. Not to worry! - booked T4 for $7 as the pick up flight was Virgin (T3 terminal). Extra 2 min walk, just park at T3 end. Used my credit card to swipe in and out of the car park. Easy. Flight landed at 6:45pm. I booked for 7pm in and 7:30pm out.

  •  

    Thanks OP!

  •  

    Did this on Saturday, can confirm it works

  •  

    Tried today and it didn't work… Booked 530AM to 6AM. Entered 510 and exited 637,got charged the drive up rate when exiting.

  • +2 votes

    Update: It's still on. Melbourne Airport confirmed that I was overcharged due to a system error.

  • Top