Airport Parking for Motorbikes

  • 13 Jan, 2014
  • Jurga Sefton


Over the years we have received a range of questions about motorcycle parking at UK’s airports. Here’s an outline of how it works.

I am on a tight budget and have recently sold my car and bought a motorbike. I am flying home soon to see my parents who live abroad, and since I won’t need much in the way of luggage I am wondering about the practicalities of taking my motorbike to the airport. Are the charges similar to parking a car at the airport?
You will be glad to know that it is much cheaper and, indeed, often free to park your motorbike at some of the airports across the UK. If you don’t have much luggage then it is an ideal method of transport.

You do not say which airport you will be using, but we’ve gathered information about motorcycle parking at popular airports:

Cardiff – The airport have recently confirmed that they have free motorcycle parking located in the Short Stay car park, not far from the exit barrier.

London Gatwick, both North and South Terminal  – There are dedicated bays in both of the short stay car parks.

London Heathrow (Terminal 2) – Towards the back of Short Stay Car Park 2

London Heathrow (Terminal and 3) – Short Stay Car Park 1A/5

London Heathrow (Terminal 4) – opposite arrivals

London Heathrow (Terminal 5) – next to Short Stay Car Park – Motorbike parking at all Heathrow Terminals is Free.

London Stansted – Red Zone Car Park (short stay) and Zone Q (long term car park). Motorcyclists receive a 50% discount on pre-booked parking in either zones.

Birmingham – Situated within Car Park 3, on left as you enter. Normal parking tariffs apply.

Manchester – Their website states that you must call them on 08713102200 (13p from BT landlines, variable from other networks and mobiles!) in advance to pre-book a space in one of the relevant Multi Storey Car Parks and you will be charged 50% of the normal fee. Upon arrival you will need to tell them your booking reference at the intercom and you should be advised where to park.

London Luton – Up to 21 days: Please use the Mid Term Car park, here you can still park free of charge but only for a maximum of 21 days. After this you will need to pay normal charges.

The car parks are monitored but bikes are left at your own risk.

Liverpool – Currently no on site motorbike parking, but secure motorbike storage is available just a minute away through the airports’ trusted provider.

Southampton – The airport confirmed that there is motorcycle parking in the short stay car park, in a designated secure area. A commenter provided us with this info:

“On the ground floor of the short term car park there is 3/4 barrier to enter through, no ticket needed, and there is a 3/4 barrier to leave through. Should you get a ticket on entry do not worry, go to the customer service counter in the car park, it’s very near the exit, and the person there will tear up your ticket and ask you to use Lane No1 with the short (3/4) barrier to exit the car park.”

Glasgow – The airport said that motorbikes can use all of their car parks, but there is a dedicated motorbike area in Car Park 2.

Edinburgh – Dedicated parking area in the Terminal surface car park, on the right past the pedestrian crossing.

London City – The parking here is free, and located underneath the DLR viaduct. If you head towards the front of the Terminal Building, the parking is opposite the turning.

Bristol – Free parking for motorbikes in the dedicated motorcycle park opposite the administration building and it should be signposted. No pre-booking needed!

The above information has been updated to the best of our knowledge, according to the information available to us- if you are aware of any changes, please let us know! (May 2016)

What can I do with my helmet and leathers? They would take up too much room in my small carry-on bag and I don’t fancy sitting on a plane wearing leathers!
Some airports have left luggage facilities but this could work out expensive at around £4 to £6 a day. Some bikers manage to cram their helmet and outer layers under their seat or in the top-box, but of course there is always the risk of theft, despite the fact that airport car parks are usually pretty secure, especially if you use a Park Mark car park. Using a storm cover will keep temptation at bay since your belongings will not be visible. Helmets can also be chained to the motorbike.

What do I have to do when I get back to the airport? Is it the same procedure as with a car i.e. pay at the barrier?
Much depends on the airport but you will find, for instance, at Gatwick that you have to have your ticket validated and “zeroed” at Customer Services BEFORE you drive your bike to the barrier, otherwise the machine will demand the fee which you would have paid for a car. You will also have to complete a form giving your bike registration number.

Is there anything else I need to know about parking my motorbike at the airport?
Yes, don’t be tempted to leave your bike outside the official bays or else you risk being towed away. On no account should motorbikes be parked in spaces meant for cars.

About Jurga Sefton

I love finding bargains online, whether it's fashion, kids products or travel deals. Also into blogging, SEO, digital marketing and all things Lithuania-related!

90 thoughts on “Airport Parking for Motorbikes”

  1. At Gatwick South terminal there is a half barier at the exit for motorbikes to leave through. There is no need to validate a ticket, just ride through the space afforded by the half barier , which is the far right hand one.

    1. Hi,
      I am flying on Friday evening from Manchester and I will have very little time. Could someone tell me the best option to park : under the flyover or multi storey ?
      Could you give me the direction to follw from the M56 ?

  2. I have just travelled from Manchester airport and I can advise that an official directed me to free motorcycle parking in the multi storey car park between terminals 1 and 3. There was space for about 10 bikes with a real floor chaining about 5 bikes to, when I arrived there was only 2 spaces taken.

    I hope that helps someone.

    1. there is bike parking under the flyover opposite T1 entrance and fairly sheltered due to bushes and the substation

      metal loops in floor for chaining bike or to the railing opp T1 entrance

      used it for years and never any trouble – T3 5 mins walk also can park just inside the car park entrance as there is space and room round the barrier

  3. hi, I,m hoping to get flight from heathrow terminal 4, on 21st November and return on December 4th, I travel light and would like to park my motor bike there, could you advise me if there is change and where would I go when I get there to park? thankyou,
    Trevor James,

  4. Hi,

    I’m travelling to Barcelona for the weekend 5th – 7th December from Gatwick.

    I have a sports bike and nowhere to stow my leathers and helmet. Can you tell me how much the lockers would be at Gatwick and if they accommodate a helmet please? Or if there is another option like a cloakroom?

    Thanks in advance, Brad

  5. Southampton Airport has a free area for bikes, ground floor of the short term car park there is 3/4 barrier to enter through, no ticket needed, and the is a 3/4 barrier to leave through. Should you get a ticket on entry do not worry. go to the customer service counter in the car park, it’s very near the exit, and the person there will tear up your ticket and ask you to use Lane No1 with the short (3/4) barrier to exit the car park.

    1. Hi there, the motorcycle parking for Heathrow Terminal 2 is located in Short Stay Car Park Car Park 2, which is signposted. Once you are in the car park, the motorcycle parking is located at the back of the car park, just to the right of the over-height exit!

  6. I’m planning (thinking about) leaving a large touring bike at Heathrow when I go back home overseas for two months. Will it be safe? and or do I need to purchase some kind of security chain to lock it up?

    1. As two months is much longer than your average short stay, in this case it would probably be worth getting in contact with Heathrow themselves for advice on whether you would need a chain or anything extra to ensure the safety of your bike. Do bear in mind that in most cases at Heathrow the parking for motorbikes is within or near Short Stay Car Parks, so there will be a fair amount of movement in the area!

  7. Thanks for your quick response.
    I’ll visit the parking area and take a look what its like when I land there in a couple of weeks.

    1. Hi there! There is motorbike parking at London City Airport, but unfortunately we cannot comment on how secure it is. I would advise getting in contact with the Airport to find out more!

    2. Watch out for London City motorbike parking. I had my GS bike stolen from there. It was chained, locked etc.,

      So be careful.

  8. I’m riding my moped to the airport on 15th of this month then flying to dublin and back for the day. Where could i park it i couldn’t find the parking under terminal 1 fly over (anybody have any detailed info?). Also is there any other options?

  9. I have used parking for my scooter at City Airport a couple of times, the longest being for a week. The parking is opposite from the terminal / taxi ranks so visible to the general public. I obviously chained my bike as well as switched my alarm on. At the time there was space for about a dozen bikes. It is completely separate from the car parks (or was 6 months ago).

  10. Hi! I’m going to Athens this evening and was wondering how much it costs to leave my scooter at Heathrow for the week.

    Does anyone know?


  11. Motorcycle parking in Red Car Park at Stansted. Is there a time limit to period of parking and are there normally plenty of parking spaces available.

    Many thanks for any info.

    1. I park every week at Stansted and there is always loads of bikes there. I have left it there for 3 weeks or so before with no problems. I have never paid. I always take a ticket at entry but on exit there is plenty of room to just ride out. I think it says on their website free motorcycle parking.
      There is an official area for bikes, but bikes are dotted around everywhere. If you are leaving it for a while try to get it in the official area (near the exit) and use a cover, I really don’t think the bikes will be checked.

    1. Hi there!

      At Liverpool John Lennon you can park your motorcycle free of charge in the express drop off and pick up car park. I am not sure if it is under cover or not, you might want to check with the airport for that one! Hope this helps.

  12. I’d like to park my scooter at Stansted Short Stay for 10 days (14-24/May). I read somewhere that I need my exit ticket validated – I arrive back at 11pm, so can I do this on departure day?

    I called the airport on their exorbidant rates only to end in an endless loop.

    Thanks in advance for any info!

  13. Hi, i am travelling from Stansted airport, will be parking my bike at airport parking. Does anyone know how it works at arrival to the parking, do I have to take the ticket from the barrier machine, and uppon arrival how do I leave the parking and whot to do with the ticket, as far as I know it is free parking for bikes. Thanks

    1. Hi there! It is free to park a motorcycle at Stansted. Unfortunately I don’t know about the ticket situation – I have tried to ask the airport but they have not been forthcoming! It is probably best to try to contact them yourself. Sorry not to be of more use!

      1. I read somewhere (no link but will risk it myself) that you pick up a ticket at the Short Stay, which is only req’d to get in. On exit press the intercom button & you are freed 🙂

        I’m still unsure about the parking – believe you can cable to something – not sure what? I have a naff old scoot, which I’ll try & cover (ordered a bit late) & chain my naff old helmet too.

        With any luck someone will pinch it 🙂

    1. Hi, there are some (5 or6) motorcycle spaces available just outside of multistorey car park ( on right side just after entering barier) available now in Edinburgh airport. Was told they are free of charge. Hope it helps. G.

  14. Hi, I need to leave my bike at Heathrow T5 soon. 2 years ago I was able to park on the ground floor in the short term car park right by the terminal entrance, at the bottom of the down ramp next to the exit barriers (just drove around barrier when leaving, did not need to use ticket). I am not sure if this area was specifically dedicated to bikes but there were around 40-50 bikes there. Does anyone know if that area is still there?
    Many thanks

    1. Hi John,
      Currently the only information that Heathrow provide is that it is next to the short stay car park for T5. This sounds similar to what you are describing, but might be worth contacting the airport directly! Thanks for your comment.

  15. Anyone knows how to park at stansted, what the procedure is? Can I leave my bike in the short stay for 14 days? Thank you!

    1. Hi Oliver, unfortunately Stansted have not gotten back to us to clarify the procedure, all we know is that free motorcycle parking is available in the Red Car Park in Short Stay as well as zone Q in the Long Stay Car Park.

    1. Hi! This is what Newcastle Airport say that motorcycle parking is allowed in all car parks, other than the Express Car Park. The tariffs are the same as car parking. Hope that helps!

  16. I am working at Birmingham airport and want to start using my motorbike to travel to work, is there anywhere to park for free?

  17. flying out of bournemouth airport for few days. Does anyone know if there is turn up and park for motorbikes at Bournemouth?- there website has no info on this. I ve always been able to do this at other uk airports. cheers for any info

    1. Hi! There is free parking for motorbikes available behind the empty building at the front of the Short Term Car Park if you are parking for up to 7 days, but if you are parking for longer than that you will need to park in the Mid Term Car Park (free up to 21 days).

      1. For leaving my bike at Luton (for 15 days > Mid-term car Park) do you know if I need to register anywhere, or just have to leave my bike there? Thank you.

  18. Stansted have changed their motorcycle parking. It’s still in Zone A, but during the works people started leaving their bikes in car spaces by the entrance. Stansted have now started putting notices on the bikes warning of tow away (at your charge). Trouble is that the official bike parking isn’t really big enough, so not sure what to do if I turn up and it’s full.

    Also, you are supposed to get your ticket validated (free) to exit, but the left hand barrier is short enough to ride around, so nobody seems to bother.

  19. Hi. Am looking at leaving my bike at Gatwick while I go away for the weekend. How up to date is the information on this site as I have spoken to the Gatwick Parking call centre monkeys and they have told me I MUST pay to use the car park. I feel however £60 for 2 days is overpriced! I would go on the information here and risk it but don’t want to get stung if they have recently changed their motorbike rules.

  20. I parked my Vespa GTS 300 at Heathrow T4 in the short stay area outside arrivals for an hour yesterday. When I came out one of the front indicators had been stolen – unscrewed, wire cut. I only discovered this on the way home when I stopped for fuel. Does anyone know if there are CCTV cameras in that area, and where I would report this?

    1. Hi there, unfortunately London Southend advise that motorcyclists should take a normal space at the car park. They didn’t specify costs however I would assume this would mean paying the same as a car. Hope that helps!

      1. Thats really unacceptable from Southend Airport. Recently re-developped airport costing millions and they haven’t even provided any motorcycle parking, which by the way should be free not 50% of a car price.

    1. Hi Tim, there doesn’t appear to be any information on their website regarding this and they have not responded to our own request, so it might be worth trying to call the airport directly to find out!

  21. Stansted airport now charges 50% of the car rate for parking motorcycles. Booking must be made over the phone (charges apply), as the online system does not apply the discounted rate. Short term is bookable for up to 4 days only, longer than that, one needs to book mid- or long-stay. Thank you Manchester Airports Group for the new policy.

  22. Hey Everyone. I can most of the info is is quite old so I’d rather ask again. I’m going to Barcelone Friday from North Terminal and back on Monday so:

    1. Is it Motorcycle parking still free?
    2. How busy it is? Leaving work at 3pm for my flight at 6:10pm, any chances of not finding a space?
    3. I’m away just for the weekend,/does that qualify as short stay?

    I appreciate any information!

    1. Hi David,

      As per Aberdeens website,

      “Motorcycle parking is free in the designated areas within the car park. For security reasons motorbikes must not be parked anywhere else.”

      Hope that helps!

  23. Gatwick now charges full short stay car parking prices for motorcycles. There is no long term (cheap) parking for bikes. This is amazingly discriminatory against bikers £45 per day unless you pre book and also must not use car spaces. Diabolical.

  24. I’m picking my pillion passenger up at Glasgow Airport – is there any free parking for motorbikes whilst I am in the terminal waiting for her?

    1. Hi Tony,

      There is nothing on Glasgow’s website about motorcycle parking, but they do state they have a dedicated pick up area which costs £3 for up to 20 minutes. I would contact the airport directly to enquire as to whether this is applies to motorcycles too.

      Franki, Airport Parking Shop

  25. Stansted has now effectively banned motorcycle parking. You can’t book online. You have to phone to book. However, both phone numbers published are not connected. They don’t respond to emails.

    Turn up and pay is not available for the specified car park and would cost £42 per day.

    Other operators don’t permit motorcycles. I have absolutely no idea how I’m going to get to the airport.

    1. Hi Christian,

      We contacted the airport and they said to us that motorbike parking does not need to be booked and is free, in both the Red short stay car park and Zone Q in Long Stay – which is a conflicting message to their website. Airports really need to make their motorbike parking policies much clearer!

      Hope that helps – Alice

      1. Yes, My bike is there now and for free. Along with maybe 100 others!!
        There is plenty of room for easy exit.

    1. Hi Paddy

      As per Leeds Bradford Airports website, they state;

      “Motorcycles and are permitted to take up a car parking bay in the most appropriate car park for their visit.

      Motorcyclists are not exempt from payment of parking tariffs.”

      Not to say there isn’t any free parking around the airport though! It’s worth looking into


  26. Hi
    I’m flying from Liverpool airport this weekend for a couple of days. Does anyone know if there is free parking available for my scooter?

    1. Hi Damon

      On their website, it says there is free outside parking for motorcycles in the Express Drop Off zone, which I’m sure would be fine for your scooter. If you want to double check, I’d suggest giving them a call on 0345 319 2781


  27. Hi im travelling from gatwick airport for 4 days and im looking to ride my scooter down, am i allowed to park it there free of charge for that long?

  28. Hi Zak,

    As per a previous comment on this thread, and the fact the official website doesn’t mention free motorcycle parking, I’d assume you are unable to park for free – best to contact them directly for a definite answer, though!


  29. Hi, can anybody tell me about parking availability at Heathrow/Gatwick airports? (haven’t decided on airline yet). I don’t want to get there and find there is no room to park and miss my check in time trying to find alternative motorcycle parking.

  30. Hi
    Looking for an update on parking my bike at Manchester airport for a week.
    Where and how much.?
    Does any one know what free facilities exist for leaving a bike at Milan airport or Geneva airport ?
    If not where could i find out?
    Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Mark,

      Manchester have now updated their website to include information about parking for motorbikes and I have updated our information above accordingly – it’s not good news as you will need to pre-book and pay a 50% reduced fee to park in the Multi Storey Car Parks. I can’t find any information about the free parking under the flyover that has been mentioned in the past and in comments here, so whether that still exists or not remains to be seen. I would give them a call on the number they recommend above.

      As for Milan or Geneva, I can’t help there but perhaps there’s some information on their websites? Or you could try calling them?

      Hope that helps!

  31. Cardiff airport motorbike parking

    Just had confirmation that bike parking is free and there’s a specific area for it next to the ticket machines in the drop off car park.

    Hope that helps.

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