PARKING your car for 24 hours at Sydney or Melbourne airport could cost you more than a one-way flight, a report has found.
An annual Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) investigation into parking prices at Australia's top five airports has found that short-term rates have increased by as much as 13.6 per cent, while long-term parking prices have jumped by as much as 14.3 per cent.
As of June 30 2011, Sydney and Melbourne were the two most expensive cities to park, with 24-hour short-term parking rated at $52 (unchanged for Sydney, up 4 per cent for Melbourne). Brisbane was the third most expensive at $40 (but down by 20 per cent), while Perth ($36) and Adelaide ($30) rounded out the five.
Dropping off loved ones at the airport in Sydney is almost as painful as waving goodbye, with one hour's parking costing $15. Brisbane was the second most expensive at $13 and Melbourne is at $12. Perth again comes fourth ($5.60) and Adelaide is the cheapest major city at $4 for one hour's parking.
The rankings changed slightly for a three-hour period, with Melbourne the priciest at $28 (up 12 per cent), followed by Sydney at $26 (unchanged), Brisbane at $22 (up 10 per cent), Adelaide at $11 (unchanged) and Perth at $10 (up 13.6 per cent).
When it comes to leaving your car at the airport while you take a short trip, Brisbane ranked as the priciest place to depart from if you plan to park in the long-term section.
For one day it will cost you $40 in the Queensland capital - a hike of 14.3 per cent. Second priciest was Melbourne ($29), Adelaide and Sydney ($25) and Perth ($16). For a seven-day stay it'll cost you $140 in Brisbane, while Sydney ranked second-most expensive ($122) followed by Perth ($88 - up 10 per cent), Melbourne ($77) and Adelaide ($70).
The report claims parking revenue has increased for all five airports. Adelaide and Sydney profits rose because of higher demand, while the other three airports were "attributable to increases in both demand and prices".
However, no matter how expensive the parking is, it can still work out to be more cost effective than catching a cab, which can cost as much as $70 one-way from the major city centres.