For most Melbournians, Tullamarine is the only option for a short trip by plane. It's notorious for the cost car parking but a lesser known fact is that motorcycle & scooter riders are treated most unfairly.
|This is all the information you get on arrival at the boom gate entry point.|
I flew interstate on Saturday, May 7, 2016. I had not parked at the airport for more than ten years.
From Melbourne's eastern suburbs the public transport trip to the airport on the other side of the city is long. Melbourne is a bit of a freak in that there is no rail link to our airport or I would have taken my tram. This is great for the car parking company.
The airport shuttle bus from the city and return is $38 plus public transport fare for a lot of people. Taxis can cost even more depending on where you are coming from.
So I rode to Tullamarine. Big mistake.
Not many Victorian motorcycle & scooter riders know that airports are under Commonwealth law. That means no free footpath parking. Heavy fines apply. That means a rider is obliged to use the car parking facility. This is great for the car parking company too. At the entrance they do not tell you what the fee will be. Nor do they have a map or signs to show you where the bike parking area is. They don't even tell you a bike parking area exists.
If you have a bag to carry and a crook left foot like me, you park the bike as close to the footbridge to the terminal as you can. I knew footpath parking was banned at the airport and, even though I was pretty sure that this facility was private property, I opted for a car bay near the footbridge.
A car parking attendant told me that I should go to the bike area. I asked how far it was and he said down two floors on the other side of the building. I told him I had a 6 am plane to catch. He was not impressed. For some reason, I asked what it cost for the bike parking area. He said. "Same as a car." I was not impressed. I said. "If I'm paying a car's fee to park my bike here then I'm entitled to a car's space."
6 am is not my best time. I gave him an Independent Riders Group card for his boss and told him I had to fly but I'd be in touch with management, and I will.
On return the bike was as I left it. I went to the parking payment machine. I was charged a staggering $59 for around twelve hours parking.
From now on, when using Melbourne Airport Tullamarine, I'll get a friend to drop me off and pick me up. That will save me enough for a slap up lunch at my destination.
|The Tullamarine car park is huge. On the far side of the facility from the entrance, are a couple of dozen bike bays.|