I haven’t had to park as much lately at Sea-Tac but after my last experience and planning for next month’s trip, I needed to re-visit this topic.
The parking companies are getting smarter. It used to be that you could find a weekly deal everywhere but now they are nowhere to be found now. I am sure the minimum wage in Sea-Tac isn’t helping. At $15.24 an hour, companies have to make up the money somewhere and it is you that’s paying it. You are paying it with higher rates and surcharges.
In addition, never underestimate the other taxes and fees
Here’s the rundown:
Airport Access fee per stay $2.50
City of SeaTac Parking per stay $3.00
Living wage surcharge .99 per 24 hours
Washington State sales tax 9.5%
Those fees can easily add about $17 to an $85 weekly fee, making it over $100 if you can find one that low. In order to get a valet rate for a week that low you will need to get a Groupon type deal, coupon or special. Every once in a while I’ll come across a weekly special but they are rare. In addition, I’ll be the first to admit I am a little picky with my airport parking. I like being close and being able to have valet service. The airport has enough stress these days without taking an extra 45 minutes to park and get to the airport.
These days’ companies own multiple lots so pay close attention to what rates are for what lots. Also remember to get on the right shuttle when you get back. With multiple lots many of the companies may have different shuttles depending on what specific lot you are parked in.
Make a reservation! I used to be able to roll up to any lot without a reservation, but these days I think more and more people like the convenience of parking near the airport. I recently actually had a hard time finding a spot and was luckily enough they allowed me to go into a closed lot and park. Also don’t forget to sign up for reward programs and remember that some lots will give you frequent flyer miles. Also don’t forget to look in the airline magazines on your flight to score valuable coupons.
Here’s my breakdown of parking rates with taxes and fees on some of the most popular lots.
Wally Park (my personal favorite)- multiple lots and they have a rewards program
- A groupon ($7.50 per day) can get you a weekly valet rate of about $70 with taxes and fees
- Self-park rates have multiple options, $11.95, $13.95, or $15.95 per day. rates vary by garage and if you are using covered, or uncovered parking. Remember even at $11.95 you are looking at over $100 with taxes and fees for a week.
- Valet rates start at $14.95 and go up to $17.95 per day. You will be over $125 for a week!
Master Park-4 lots all valet, including one garage and the most expensive
- Lots A-C all run $15.99 per day or about $136 a week
- The garage runs $17.99 per day or about $150
- Groupon deals-are available and for some reason are different prices depending on what lot. Keep in mind the regular price for lots A-C is the same but the groupon rates vary. Seems odd to me but the Groupon can be as low as $79.99 per week or about $101
Thrifty-Little farther away (1 mile) but reliable and good value
- I like that they quote you a price and the total right upfront
- Discounts available by placing a deposit on your rate
- Weekly rate w/deposit & reservation-$84 including taxes
- Without deposit-About $110 including taxes.
Sea-Tac Airport-Yes you can park at the airport & maybe for cheaper!
- Sign up with port of Seattle website and get a coupon. I landed a coupon that can get you a week parking at the airport garage for $109 including taxes. Cheaper than many lots and no shuttles!
Other options? All rates calculated from Tacoma
- Take an airporter shuttle.
- Shared van service with pick up at home will start about $40 per person round trip. Good value for 1 person, not so much for more (Capital Aeroporter, Shuttle express etc).
- Shuttle with set stops such as Kitsap airporter-About $36 round trip per person
- Uber-About $40 each way
- For that special trip look into a limo. As with all transportation, booking round trip will save money. Or do a limo going and take a shuttle back.
My advice-stick to groupon or self-park and especially for longer trips. For a quick trip, the valet in the fancy garage is a nice treat but rates continue to climb. If it’s just me I am more open to park farther away or seek airport shuttle service or use public transit. With the family or a group, I always pay for the convenience.