Sydney Airport is launching a new way to charge cars picking up domestic passengers

Photo: Sydney Airport

Sydney airport is changing where drivers can pick up passengers for free at the domestic terminal in September, turning the current 10-minute parking zone between the T2/T3 terminals into a “priority” pick-up that will cost a minimum of $4 for 15 minutes, charged to your eTag.

The new free pick-up zone will move east, a 500m, 8-minute walk to the P3 car park.

The changes come into effect on September 13, nearly two months later than the originally planned date of July 19, after the changes were first announced in May.

The priority pick-up zone will also be used pre-booked taxis and ridesharing services such as UberX and GoCar. Cars staying after 15 minutes will pay $8 for 15-30 minutes in the priority zone.

Sydney Airport says the new arrangements provide greater choice, more space and improved convenience for anyone picking up passengers and come after “an extensive consultation process” for the “passenger-focused solution”. They’re also introducing a one-hour free parking option at the Blu Emu car park, via a free shuttle bus.

Parking general manager Craig Norton said the new free pick-up area offers 700 undercover spaces, and the increased 15 minutes time limit gives people an extra five minutes of free parking.

“We have also introduced new pick-up zones to accommodate pre-booked commercial operators, including ridesharing services, in response to passenger demand,” he said.

The small, existing free space, which has less than 50 spaces, was often over-crowded from the moment it was introduced a few years ago as part of continuing changes to parking arrangements at the airport. Drivers often stopped right in the middle of the road, rather than parking, to pick up passengers, leading to additional queues.

The airport said it developed the new arrangements as a solution to the introduction of ridesharing services, which can now make pickups at the airport.

There are no changes to taxi ranks outside the terminals or accessible pick-up spaces at T2/T3. There is also no change to express pick-up at T1.

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