Fly-drive option simpler than ever


Passengers have welcomed the departure of the old, clunky and unreliable parking system at Marlborough Airport.

The new $140,000 system replacing it was supposed to be in place since Monday, although problems getting the online eftpos and credit card systems working meant it did not take off until yesterday.

While many people at the airport yesterday had not used the new system yet, they were happy to see the old one gone. Passenger Brian Gillett summed up the feelings of many, saying it could be a problem paying by the day if flights changed; and the machines were unreliable.

"We used to have some fun because it [the machine] wouldn't accept coins."

After a short stop to pay her parking, Marlborough Express food writer Jan Bilton said using the new machines was "a piece of cake, really simple".

"It's much simpler and I think it's ended up being cheaper for us doing it this way. We would have had to pay for three days at $30. This way it was only $24."

The cost of parking at the airport has risen from $8 a day to $10 a day, or $1 an hour for up to five hours, but fellow traveller Michael Ryan said the system could still work out cheaper.

Under the old system it was not uncommon to have to pay for three full days parking, but use the park for just over two days only.

With the new system, drivers take a ticket from a machine at the parking entrance.

They no longer have to display the ticket on their dashboard, instead it is paid for when people are leaving at a machine either at the old parking kiosk or the baggage claim area.

Drivers then have 15 minutes to leave the car park.

The Marlborough Express