Benefits of Traveling Through Smaller Airports
Frequent travelers know the stress of major airport hubs. Long lines and high prices are the norm rather than the exception: the inconvenience of getting to the airport, finding and paying for parking, the sometimes seemingly endless string of trams and buses, the inflated costs all add up to headaches.
If you live in a less metropolitan area or sometimes even in larger cities, small to midsize airports can offer travelers certain benefits that make air travel more enjoyable.
- Lower fares: Particularly for domestic travel, small airports have become a home for budget airlines where operating costs are less. You can therefore sometimes find deals on travel that will save you money. On one travel site, a frequent-flyer reported “saving thousands of dollars” on flights in 2018 and 2019, and added “Sometimes I snagged flights from as little as $19 each way.”
- Cheaper parking: The difference in savings for long-term parking at a major airport versus a small airport can be hundreds of dollars. Small airports often charge less than $10/day for budget parking and some are even free, while major airports are much higher. In 2021, for example, CNBC reported that Boston Logan Airport’s daily parking cost “a whopping $21.76 — the highest in the country.”
- Less waiting: Smaller airports have far fewer travelers so wait times at counters, going through security, picking up food, renting cars, baggage pick up, and at shuttle stops are often much shorter. This can translate to less worry about arriving early in case of long waits–that means a little extra sleeping time!
- More convenience–Small to midsize airports are based in less populated areas, so you’ll often find that they are much more convenient to get to. Your commute to the airport could take less than 15 minutes depending on where you live. You’re also likely to experience less traffic, find a parking space much nearer your terminal (often within easy walking distance), find rental car access that doesn’t require long shuttle rides, and spend less time navigating the terminal.
- Cheaper shopping: Whether you’re looking for that bottle of water, a quick meal, a good book to read, or a few snacks to take onboard, the prices of goods at small airports are usually much cheaper than they are at major hubs.
–Written by Ivan Young in partnership with Faxage online faxing service.