Gatwick Airport Drop-off Charges

woman outside airport

Gatwick Airport Drop-off Charges

In March 2021, new charges were introduced for the drop-off zones at Gatwick Airport. Number plate reading cameras have been installed and each time a vehicle enters the drop-off zone there is a minimum charge of £5.00, which is payable online once you have exited the zone.

Exemptions are in place for Blue Badge holders and there is a local commuter scheme for commuters who are regularly dropped off at Gatwick South Terminal for the railway station. Provisions are also in place for Meet & Greet parking, to avoid penalty notices being issued.

All other vehicles must pay the new fees. Read on for more helpful information on dropping off at Gatwick North and Gatwick South Terminals.

Drop-off – Gatwick North Terminal

The drop-off zone at Gatwick North Terminal is the lower-level forecourt area, between the Sofitel and the multi-storey car park. Enter the North Terminal from Airport Way or London Road and follow the signs to the drop-off zone. Once your passengers have collected their luggage, follow the signs to exit the drop-off zone.

The drop-off charge must be paid online the same day or before midnight the following day. Failure to pay will generate a parking charge notice of £100, which is reduced to £60 if paid within 14 days.

Drop-off fees – Gatwick North Terminal

  • £5 for the first 10 minutes
  • £1 for each additional minute, up to 20 minutes
  • maximum charge: £25
  • maximum length of stay: 30 mins

Free drop off – Gatwick North Terminal

You can still drop off for free at Gatwick North. Follow the Long Stay North car park signs, take a ticket at the entry barrier, and find a free parking bay. Your passengers can take the free shuttle bus to the terminal, which is just five minutes away. The shuttles run every 10-12 minutes, so please make sure your passengers factor in enough time to get to check-in and boarding. Exit the car park using the same ticket; no charge is payable if you have stayed less than two hours.

Drop-off – Gatwick South Terminal

The drop-off zone at Gatwick South Terminal is on the lower-level forecourt area right outside the terminal entrance. Enter the South Terminal from Airport Way and follow the signs to the drop-off zone. Once your passengers have collected their luggage, follow the signs to exit the drop-off zone.

The drop-off charge must be paid online the same day, or before midnight the following day. Failure to pay will generate a parking charge notice of £100, which is reduced to £60 if paid within 14 days.

Drop-off fees – Gatwick South Terminal

  • £5 for the first 10 minutes
  • £1 for each additional minute, up to 20 minutes
  • maximum charge: £25
  • maximum length of stay: 30 minutes

Free drop off – Gatwick South Terminal

You can still drop off for free at Gatwick South. Follow the Long Stay car park signs, take a ticket at the entry barrier, and find a free parking bay. Your passengers can take the free shuttle bus to the terminal, which takes between 7 and 12 minutes. The shuttles run every 10-12 minutes, so please make sure your passengers factor insufficient time to get to check-in and boarding. Exit the car park using the same ticket; no charge is payable if you have stayed less than two hours.

gatwick people outside terminal

Blue Badge exemptions

To receive an exemption to the drop-off fees, Blue Badge holders must register their details in advance and provide passenger name(s), date of a flight(s), vehicle number plate, and a photo or scan of the Blue Badge. 

Local Commuter Scheme

For local commuters who use Gatwick Airport railway station, there is a Local Commuter Scheme, which permits two free drop-offs per day at the South Terminal, for an annual fee of £50. Those eligible to register for the scheme must live in one of three postcodes: RH6 0, RH6 9, or RH11 0. 

Automatic payments

Regular visitors to Gatwick can create an AutoPay account, so your payment card is debited automatically with the appropriate charge each time your vehicle enters the drop-off zone.

Arriving by taxi

Taxis are not exempt from the drop-off charges at Gatwick Airport, but drivers can add the charge to the passenger fare.

Are there barriers to the drop-off zones?

The drop-off zones have been deliberately left barrier-free, to allow the free flow of traffic. The new number plate recognition cameras record each vehicle’s registration at the time it enters and exits the zone, and the appropriate fee is payable online.

Picking up at Gatwick Airport

The Short Stay car parks are the most convenient place to pick up passengers, as picking up can take much longer than dropping off. In the drop-off zone, the charges increase after the first 10 minutes and the maximum length of time you can stay is 30 minutes, which will cost £25 – a lot more than the Short Stay car parks. 

Alternatively, you can use the Long Stay car parks, which offer free parking for up to two hours. Your passengers will just need to take the shuttle bus to the car park from the terminal.

Red Routes

Watch out for red routes on the airport roads, which are marked with double red lines. Red routes mean no stopping, no waiting, no parking, or unloading. Any vehicle contravening the red route restrictions will receive a penalty of £100 (reduced to £60 if paid within 14 days).

Parking at Gatwick

There is a wide range of parking options at Gatwick for those wanting to drive their own car to and from the airport. For the best value, you can’t beat APH Park & Ride or APH Self Park, which are both based in a modern, purpose-built car park fitted with all the latest security technology. Or select a chauffeur service, such as I Love Meet & Greet, where you simply drop your car at the terminal and walk straight to check-in.

Get an APH Gatwick parking quote here.

Hotel & parking at Gatwick

Staying overnight at the airport before your flight makes for a relaxing start to a trip away, especially if you have an early flight departure or are travelling some distance from the airport.

We offer a variety of airport hotels; some located next to the North or South Terminal, others just a short drive from either the airport or one of our great-value off-airport car parks. The 4* Holiday Inn Gatwick Worth, for example, offers free overnight parking and is just a few minutes from the APH Car Park, where you can leave your car in the morning and take the free shuttle to the airport terminal.

Alternatively, the 4* Hampton by Hilton London Gatwick is connected directly to the North Terminal and the 4* Hilton London Gatwick is a few minutes by a covered walkway to the South Terminal. Both of these hotels can be booked in conjunction with the APH Car Park to make a cost-effective hotel and parking package.

Get an APH Gatwick hotel and parking quote here.

Getting to Gatwick Airport – by road

Lying just off the M23 Junction 9, Gatwick is 28 miles south of London and offers easy access to the southeast of England and the rest of the UK via the national motorway network. 

If you are approaching Gatwick from the north, it’s just 10 minutes down the M23 from the M25, Junction 7. If you are coming from the south, it’s 27 miles from Brighton via the A23/M23 or 75 miles via the A3 from Portsmouth. 

From Junction 9 of the M23, Airport Way takes you to the entrance of the South Terminal at the first roundabout and then to the entrance of the North Terminal at the second roundabout.

Getting to Gatwick Airport – by train

Gatwick was the first airport in the world to have a direct railway link – back in 1958.

You’ll find the railway station in the South Terminal, close to the shuttle that whisks you to the North Terminal in just two minutes.

For a non-stop 30-minute service to London Victoria, take the Gatwick Express. Alternatively, take the slower but cheaper local Southern train to London Victoria via East Croydon and Clapham Junction. Southern services will also get you to Brighton, Eastbourne, Southampton, and Portsmouth, while Thameslink connects you to London Bridge, St Pancras, Luton Airport Parkway, and Bedford. There is an hourly GWR service to Reading via Redhill, Reigate, and Guildford.

Tickets can be bought online or at the station. You can also use contactless payment at the ticket gates.

Getting to Gatwick Airport – by bus

Metrobus runs most of the local buses that serve Gatwick Airport. From the North Terminal, the bus stops are on Furlong Way – a five-minute walk. In the South Terminal, take the lift down from Arrivals to the A23 for northbound buses, and for southbound buses, take the lift from the shuttle station near the train station to the other side of the A23. There is a pedestrian subway under the A23 if you find yourself on the wrong side of the road. 

Bus routes include Crawley, Horley, Redhill, Reigate, Dorking, Horsham, East Grinstead, and Caterham.

Getting to Gatwick Airport – by coach

National Express operates services to 70 destinations direct from Gatwick, with connections to 900 more. Buy tickets online or from the National Express desks in the North and South Terminal. In the North Terminal, the National Express coaches arrive and depart from the lower level, outside International Arrivals. In the South Terminal, they arrive and depart from the lower forecourt, stops 1 to 5.

In addition to National Express services, The Airline (Oxford Bus Company) shuttles between Gatwick and Oxford via Heathrow.

Guide to Gatwick North Terminal

Guide to Gatwick South Terminal

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5 comments for “Gatwick Airport Drop-off Charges

  1. Humphrey Jaeger says:

    I did a drop off on the 28th of match this year around 10 am
    After drop off I had a call from work and went straight to work,
    On the 29th of April it was only when seeing a tv programme about paying traffic warden fines during the day that I realised I had not paid the £5! drop off payment!
    I immediately called the NCP customer services and enquired about payment .
    I was told I would have to wait for a penalty notice to be sent. So far nothing has arrived !!
    Can you clarify please. I appreciate I will have to pay ba fine BUT I do not want to worry amount paying an enormous amount. It was my first visit to Gatwick since the new system came into operation.
    is there a time after so many days that a notice is sent out? I was very willing to pay when I phoned on the 29th of April.
    A reply very much appreciated . Humphrey Jaeger.
    Thankyou

  2. Rich Sole says:

    So still free just use long stay or short stay catch shuttle

  3. p coombs says:

    trying to pay but wants me to register this is a one off surely i can make a guest one off payment

  4. Patricia Grady says:

    Not easy to pay on line!

  5. David says:

    More price gouging!

    I investigated buses, but they don’t run early or late enough for my flights!

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