REVIEW : Purple Parking's Meet and Greet Service at Manchester Airport

Anyone who follows me on social media will have known I recently went on holiday to Corfu (picture spam here, blog post to come soon if you're interested).  We had an early flight out from Manchester Airport so decided to utilise the "Meet and Greet" service offered on-site by Purple Parking.

We've used Purple Parking's "park and ride" service on a number of occasions previously, both from Manchester Airport and from Leeds Bradford Airport and cannot fault them. There's always a shuttle bus just a couple of minutes away and the cars are stored in secure parking lots so I was interested to see what the extra £10-£20 would buy me.

Arriving At The Airport


We were provided with clear instructions on how to approach our terminal at the airport and we were asked to ring ahead 15 minutes before we arrived.  We were flying from T1 so we were directed straight to the drop-off point for the front of the terminal, guided into designated parking bays for this service and met by our chauffeur.

The usual exterior checks were done for any existing external damage to the car (bumps, scratches, etc) and the mileage recorded. Then we were given a copy of the booking-in sheet with all this additional information on.  We were asked to ring a telephone number on our return after we'd cleared passport control, baggage collection and customs and then pointed in the direction of the check-in desks (literally across the road).

We checked in smoothly and headed off for our holiday.

Coming Home


Our flight out of Corfu was on time, as was the landing at Manchester T1.  We had a bit of a delay at passport control so I rang the number provided and explained the situation. They asked me to ring back when we'd cleared customs. A short while later, we were clear, I rang back and we were directed to a specific meeting point outside the airport building for our chauffeur to bring our car back.

It was around 11.30pm, not a very warm summer evening and we were unsure if we were stood in the right place even though we were assured that our chauffeur would be waiting in a parking bay with our car.  About 10-15 minutes later, our driver turned up (yes we were stood in the right place but without shelter and no appropriate signage). We were handed our car keys but we were stood in the middle of the main short-stay car park in front of T1 at Manchester Airport. There wasn't a real chance to check over the car, plus there was just street/car park lighting available. It was a totally different experience from when we dropped the car off.

Apart from this minor blip (I'm putting my impatience down to the delay at passport control and the fact that we were shocked back to reality by the cooler British temperatures), I can't fault the service. On closer inspection, the car had no damage to it, the driver was pleasant and pointed us in the right direction to navigate out of the car park.  Not having to queue up for a shuttle bus, travel 5 miles or so away from the airport and then drive through a deserted industrial estate back to the motorway was definitely a bonus.

Final thoughts : I would definitely use this service again. In fact, I'm just about to book again for when we go away in the Autumn. 

FIND OUT MORE ON THE PURPLE PARKING WEBSITE 


Frequently Asked Questions (prompted by friends who were interested in this review)


Is there an easy option for wheelchair users?

The "Meet and Greet" service is as close as you can get to the door of the terminal and check-in area. From my experience, in T1 at Manchester Airport, the drop-off area is flat, there is a zebra crossing across to the terminal and then you are straight into the airport.  There will be other similar facilities in other Terminals and airports but it would be best to check before booking.

Where is the car stored for the duration of the holiday?

Again, in my experience, Purple Parking storage areas are manned 24 hours a day as they run their shuttle services from the parking lots.  The secure car parks are usually around 5 miles away from the airport and located on industrial estates.  When we flew from Leeds Bradford last year, the secure car park was literally across the road from the airport and the shuttle service took 2 minutes, door-to-door.

How is the car moved?

The chauffeur drives it. The company will be fully insured for this service.

What happens if the car is damaged?

You should be offered the opportunity to inspect your car fully before accepting it back.  As noted above, when our car was returned this proved very difficult in the dark car park just before midnight. I would imagine that if there was any notable damage to your car, your chauffeur would be expected to point it out to you and offer you an option to rectify the situation

Are there any other options?

Purple Parking offer a variety of parking options including off-site parking (the Meet and Greet service and Park & Ride), on-site parking and business parking.  On their website you fill in a short form to be offered the costings for each option.


What is the cost?

This varies throughout the year.  We travelled in July and the car was parked for two weeks.  Our Meet and Greet service would have cost £90 compared to £70 for the shuttle Park and Ride service. In high season this cost is definitely elevated.  Currently there is a 25% discount via the website for signing up to the Purple Parking newsletter and I've tweeted @PurpleParking in the past and they've issued me with a one-off 10% discount code.


Feedback


I understand the service providers need to know when you are turning up with your car however I'm not sure how I would have been able to phone ahead had I been a lone traveller as my phone is always safely stored away whilst driving.

"Chauffeur" is a strong word. It's a guy in a high-viz jacket with a clipboard.

I zeroed my milometer when we got to the airport.  Firstly, I've seen Ferris Bueller... but also I was interested in exactly how far away the storage car park was.  An exact 9 miles was clocked when the car was returned to us. 


This is a review in collaboration with Purple Parking 
For more information please see my disclosure policy 

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