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Old 02-04-2013, 11:32 AM   #1
whatisgoofy?
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Free Airline Parking at Reagan/National Airport Hotels?

One of the many airports we're scouting is Reagan/National...since we'd love to catch the earliest flight possible, we'd plan on booking a hotel the night before (we're a few hours' drive away). Here's the catch...on other trips, we'd leave our car at the hotel and take the hotel shuttle to the airport, and reclaim our car at the end of the trip. In our current research, we can't seem to find a airport area hotel that offers the free parking option...and the cost to park would swallow up the airfare savings of using this airport. Does anyone know if there's a Reagan/National area hotel that offers free parking for fliers? Thanks for your help!
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:59 PM   #2
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When I flew out of DCA in 2011, There wasn't a decent option that fit my needs with parking at a hotel during my trip.

It seems that because the surrounding area is so built up and space is limited, There are few nearby hotels that offer an inexpensive offsite parking option. There are a couple however that can shave $2 or $3 daily off the onsite Economy parking, but the issue I ran into there were with my flight times and the hotel's airport shuttle hours. I like to take the early departure and late return... so Figure I had to be at the airport by 6am in order to check in and get thru security in time.... and wouldn't be back and have my bags on the return flight until 10:30 or 11pm so i could catch the hotel shuttle. The hotel shuttle however only ran from 6am-10pm.... so It would cut me MUCH tighter than I'd like if I caught the first morning shuttle to the airport, and there was a good chance I'd be forced to take a cab on my return flight.


That said.... From crunching the #'s, I found that I could get a really nice hotel room in Crystal City (pretty much just a quick trip across the bridge to the airport) via Priceline for the night that when I added the Airports Economy parking price still ended up being cheaper or about the same than what I'd end up paying with the park & Fly rates at the couple hotels that offered it in the area.
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:00 PM   #3
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I don't think there will be any such thing as "free parking" in Crystal City. Much too close to downtown DC and the Pentagon. We actually just booked our summer flights out of National even tho we prefer BWI or Dulles - but it was like a $300 savings pp on the flights to use National. I have been considering doing self parking at one of the Crystal City hotels that is offered for a fee. $8-9 / day but still cheaper than the airport economy lot parking which is $14 / day.

I found this website that I am considering:
http://www.cheapairportparking.org/p...time=18&promo=
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:00 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tip! I think I'll have to look into that!
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:34 AM   #5
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I agree that you're probably not going to find free parking near DCA. But, some hotels offer a "park and fly" rate. Just do an internet search on "park and fly DCA." I'm not sure they are really great deals - but something to look into, perhaps.

For instance, the Comfort Inn in Ballston will charge an extra $30 for you to park in their garage for up to 14 days. But they don't have a shuttle - you'd use the Metro which is nearby. $30 is probably cheaper than what you'd pay to park at DCA. But then you need to add in the metro fare (which would be maybe $6/per person roundtrip)
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:32 AM   #6
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My suggestion is to park somewhere like Greenbelt (Green), Glenmont (red Line) or Shady Grove (REd line on the west side of metro DC) and take Metro in on the Day of your flight (unless it's really early). I would give you a specific station, but I don't know where in PA you are coming from. You take the Red Line or Green Line to Gallery Place/Chinatown and you transfer to a Yellow Line going towards Huntington. The Yellow goes directly to Reagan National. You save both a hotel room cost (over a $100 around that area). If you have an early flight, I would say Follow the Comfort Inn suggestion and take metro in.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:57 AM   #7
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Personally I would not be comfortable leaving my car at a metro station parking lot overnight...let alone for 2 weeks. I just don't think the security is all that. Then there is dealing with all the luggage on the metro - not so fun to drag a lot of luggage up & down the escalators & onto the trains. I will leave that to folks who travel lighter than we do as a family going on a 2 week vacation!!
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tstidm1 View Post
My suggestion is to park somewhere like Greenbelt (Green), Glenmont (red Line) or Shady Grove (REd line on the west side of metro DC) and take Metro in on the Day of your flight (unless it's really early). I would give you a specific station, but I don't know where in PA you are coming from. You take the Red Line or Green Line to Gallery Place/Chinatown and you transfer to a Yellow Line going towards Huntington. The Yellow goes directly to Reagan National. You save both a hotel room cost (over a $100 around that area). If you have an early flight, I would say Follow the Comfort Inn suggestion and take metro in.
I didn't think overnight parking was even allowed, but you learn something new everyday.

Multi-day parking is only available a a few stations.
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Multi-day parking (also known as overnight or long-term parking) is available at three stations: Greenbelt, Huntington, and Franconia-Springfield. Each of these stations has between 15 and 17 spaces allocated for multi-day use of up to 10 days. Availability is on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no charge for multi-day parking beyond the regular fee. See the individual station pages for more details about multi-day parking at these three stations:

• Greenbelt • Huntington • Franconia-Springfield
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:32 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Anal Annie View Post
Personally I would not be comfortable leaving my car at a metro station parking lot overnight...let alone for 2 weeks. I just don't think the security is all that. Then there is dealing with all the luggage on the metro - not so fun to drag a lot of luggage up & down the escalators & onto the trains. I will leave that to folks who travel lighter than we do as a family going on a 2 week vacation!!
Just FYI, most airports will accept checked baggage any time on the day of a flight. What we often do for long trips is drive up to airport drop-off parking and have the bags checked hours ahead of time, then drive back home, leave the car in our garage, and take the train back to the airport. It isn't worth the hassle for a short trip, but for two weeks it can add up. (In our case we are normally flying SW, and we never take more than 4 checked bags no matter how long the trip is, so normally just a driver and the oldest child need to make the luggage run. We live about 30 minutes from our airport.)

Try some of the advance parking reservations sites instead of hotel sites, such as Easy Park Fly. Sometimes the hotels don't want to mention special long-term rates on their own websites, so you can just price out the parking charge separately from the room charge.
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Old 02-05-2013, 06:09 PM   #10
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Park and Fly rates are the best option. We have had good luck with the rates at the Crystal City Marriott . It usually runs about $25 to $30 more per night and they run the shuttle for very early morning flights. Their parking is in their garage.
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