You’ve booked your hotel, you got lucky on your flights and you’ve bought your sun tan lotion your all set for your summer vacation. Or are you?
A recent poll by SkyScanner revealed over 20% of people do not book their airport transfers. Not a big deal I hear you say I will grab a taxi from the airport or get the bus or train or a friend to pick me up.
Whatever the case don’t get me wrong there are cheap and free ways to travel from the airport to your hotel or accommodation but lets not overlook some obvious things.
Lets take a real life example to illustrate my thought pattern.
Ok we are travelling from London Gatwick to Malaga Airport on a low budget airline we arrive at 11pm in a golf party of 16.
Some Important Questions To Ask Yourself
- How many people are in your group?
If there are 4 or less then you can practically rule out a minibus service. The cost saving per person is not beneficial.
If there are more than 4 then you should seriously consider an airport minibus transfer.
Taxis in Spain only carry 4 passengers and there are no subsidy’s for only one or two people in a cab. If its a golf party like our example many golf tour operators will book these transfers for you.
A lot of taxis dont use a meter or have a fixed tariff there are chancers in all walk of life not just in Spain.
A group of 16 golfers would be 4 taxis and practically quadruple the cost of a minibus or shuttle bus.
- What time of day or night are you arriving?
If your arriving after 11pm a lot of the car hire companies based in the airport are closed and will charge you an extra fee to get someone to come out and give you your keys and transport you to your car.
Train times generally run between 6am and 11pm depending on day and holiday schedule of the arrival city.
In this case Malaga Airport has a train station via Renfe and run between 6am and last train runs till 11pm.
Bear in mind that you have to carry your own case and get from the station to your accommodation which is an extra hassle and expense if your getting a local cab on the last part of the journey.
Don’t get me wrong Renfe are superb especially if you want to travel further afield like Madrid.
A private minibus service will check your arrival time via live updates and make sure they are waiting at airport arrival lounge for you regardless of time.
- Distance to Destination?
This might think a silly question but the distance and location is pivotal in getting a cheap fair or cheap transfer. Train stations only run via main thoroughfares.
For example Renfe run from Malaga Airport to Fuengirola and no further so if you wanted to be in La Cala, Mijas costa, Marbella, Puerto Banus or Estepona its not happening for you.
Check out a Google map to plan the distance to your destination resort.
A taxi may run a meter or just price you based on how long it takes to your hotel, not ideal. Whereas a private transfer will fix the price before you leave the UK and you pay one price regardless of the minibus transfer company have underpriced the fair that’s their responsibility.
- Buses – Cheap and cheerful
There is a reason why buses are cheap. Yes you can save money, if the journey is short and the fare is low and the bus times are accurate then you can use this method of transport as an airport transfer.
But for me personally I dont want to rely on these factors and get my holiday off to a terrible start if anything goes wrong
Did you do some research?
The Costa del Sol is a big place and you should do your research before you come if your not a resident or regular holiday maker in Andalucia.
That way you can determine how far your accommodation is away from the airport and what is the cheapest form of transport for your party.