OFFICIAL parking at some of the UK's airports can cost more than that of a return flight to many European holiday destinations, according to new research.
A study by YourParkingSpace.co.uk, which lists often much cheaper alternative parking spaces to book such as nearby driveways and empty parking spaces at hotels, looked at several of the UK's busiest airports to see how much a week's parking is from Saturday, October 26 to Saturday, November 2, the autumn half term break in most parts of the country.
It discovered that the cost of official parking was higher than the price of a plane ticket to destinations including Madrid, Paris and Dublin.
The cost of parking at Heathrow's Terminal 4 in the short stay car park is Â£159 while a return flight to Madrid is available for Â£123.
Meanwhile, at Gatwick, Britain's second busiest airport, a return flight to Paris is available for a mere Â£95, compared to parking the car at the premium short stay north terminal for Â£242 - almost three times the cost of the flight to the French capital - while a nearby alternative with YourParkingSpace.co.uk is only Â£40 and a mere eight minutes' walk away from the airport.
At Glasgow airport it is possible to get a return flight to Dublin for as little as Â£29 while official fast track flex plus parking costs Â£89.99 - about three times the cost of the plane ticket.
Parking with YourParkingSpace.co.uk can cost as little as £20, requiring a 20 minute walk or a short bus journey to and from the airport.
Harrison Woods, managing director of YourParkingSpace.co.uk, said: "The price of official parking at some of the UK's busiest airports is sky high.
"Meanwhile, rented driveways and empty parking spaces offer a nearby convenient alternative, often considerably cheaper than official airport parking, even when adding on the cost of a short taxi ride to the terminal if it is necessary."