Australian Airports made $767 million from car park fees last year
Sydney Airport is among the nation’s main airports pocketing millions of dollars in profits from car park fees, the consumer watchdog has revealed.
High fees have long been a sticking point for passengers with new figures from an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission report revealing the airport made a $97 million profit last year.
Sydney Airport is the most expensive in Australia, costing passengers an average drive-up fee of $75 for three days.
The ACCC has revealed the country’s main airports are making millions from car park fees. (9NEWS)
It also grew its operating profits – or passenger fees it charged the airlines – by 7.1 percent to $360.8 million, meaning travellers were copping the brunt with increased ticket prices.
“It’s brutally expensive,” one Sydney flier told 9NEWS.
“We normally wait at the servo, wait for the call and come to the pick up,” said another.
The ACCC report found that profit margins from car park fees across the main airports in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth ranged from 52.4 percent to 71.9 percent of revenues last year.
Sydney Airport had the highest profit margin from car parking. (AAP)
For Brisbane Airport, this generated $63.7 million in profit, while Melbourne Airport raked in $86.7 million.
A total combined profit from 2016-17 comes out at about $767 million.
Despite this, Sydney and Melbourne airports were found to have “satisfactory” quality of service, while Brisbane and Perth were rates “good”.
The ACCC found airports were managing the challenge of congestion, with the total number of passengers increasing by around 30 million across the airports in the last ten years.The ACCC is concerned about a lack of regulation constraining market power. (AAP)
In a statement, Sydney Airport said any fees increases were to fund increased demand on infrastructure.
“Sydney Airport faces a number of regulatory constraints over its operations such as overnight curfew and limits on the number of aircraft movements per hour,” a spokesman said.
When it comes to parking, the spokesman said it provided options including free 15-minute parking, online discounts and other modes of transport to avoid the spiked fees.
The consumer watchdog is encouraging customers to book online and with independent car parks.
It will make a submission to an upcoming Productivity Commission inquiry into airport regulation and market power, at which the “potential regulatory remedies” for car parking and aeronautical services will be addressed.