If airline travel is in your near future, you may be considering using an airport shuttle to get you to and from the airport to your home, hotel, or other location. The shuttle is a great and fairly inexpensive option for many travelers. So, as you are making travel plans, check with the local airport both at your departure and destination points to see what airport shuttle options they have available. Take a moment to go over the following ideas and tips to decide if the shuttle is the best option for you and your budget.
Have you considered all of your transportation options? Other options besides the airport shuttle include everything from driving your own car and parking in one of the long term lots, to a taxi, to the bus, or even train or subway (if it is available). You should even consider if it would be feasible to have a friend or family member drive you and drop you off. Think about both ends of your trip as well -- what might or might not be available could be different in both areas.
Check for the airport shuttle cost. If you are staying in a hotel or renting a car, you may have access to a free shuttle from the rental car company or the hotel. Most off-site parking lots also offer free shuttle service. If you have not pre-arranged for airport shuttle service you may be able to find an in-house shuttle desk at the airport, or more information and the ground transportation booth in the terminal. Of course, if you are taking a shuttle from home, you will need to call ahead. Any time you take an airport shuttle, tipping is at your discretion but it is fairly customary.
Shop for the best shuttle service. If you are working through the airport or the hotel concierge service this is a fairly simple proposition. They may only have one or two choices, but they will work with you and your schedule. If you are on your own, one good option is to check online for airport shuttle service. You will pay for these services, but many offer online discounts for making early reservations. It is less expensive than taking a taxi, and is more comfortable than riding in a crowded bus. Obviously you will want to look for an airport shuttle company that operates in your local area. Then, if you will be taking a shuttle at your destination, you will need to find a company that operates there as well. If you don't want to worry about contacting different shuttle companies for each location, try to find a nationally based company that has airport shuttle service in both locations. You may even be able to get a better deal this way.
If you are traveling with a group or for a business trip you may be able to get business or group rates on your shuttle trip. Check for early reservation discounts. You may even be able to book one van for your whole group, so that you can travel to and from the airport together.
One of the least pleasant things about travel can be the trip to and from the airport. Finding the best way to get there can seem like it is more hassle than it is worth. But, if you do your homework, you can not only save money, but your peace of mind and time as well.