Can Uber Hurt Parking Investments?

There’s a short answer to this…. yes, and no. The reality of Uber’s affect on the parking industry is a viable argument. This will likely put pressure on certain urban lots over time. With that said NYC will always have crowded parking facilities and appreciating land. Airport lots will likely continue to be cheaper than a ridesharing service (which we’ll jump into below). Uber could disrupt smaller city areas that have urban like qualities where taking an Uber from point A to be makes more sense for the cheap pricing and convenience.

As a study conducted by the Pew Research Center concluded that 36 percent of US adults in urban residences have used a ridesharing service. This shows growth by 15% in this industry from their 2015 study. What does this really mean - past the number growth and how this can alter the future of parking?

Personally, I utilize Uber depending…. and that’s what it all comes down to, depending... For instance when I go out to the bar (I’m in a very urban area) I may call an Uber - and it may only cost me $6 each direction because of the close proximity. Occasionally I go on vacation and must travel to the airport. This is where the reality of the matter comes down to someone sensible. This is also how I plan my trip to the airport.


Off-Site Parking Facilities

Offering all the benefits at a cheaper price.

It costs $67 each way to take an Uber to the airport for me, with this said - the only time that it makes sense to do this from a financial standpoint is if I’m on vacation for less than 13.4 days. This compiles the following facts to be weighted:

  • $134 for Uber round trip to and from the airport (Does not include multiplier times)

  • Off-Site Airport Parking @ $10 per day.

  • If vacationing 13.4 Days or longer an Uber is cost effective at these price variables.

When I speak to people that bring up the Uber argument, it’s very easy to dismiss those concerns. Take our Charleston Airport facility for example, we charge less than the direct airport lot, are able to wash your car for your return, and shuttle you door to door at the airport . The Charleston International Airport knows how lucrative parking is that they are building a new deck upwards for “closer to the gate” parking at a substantially higher price (this is great news for our current partners!).

There are many other savvy travelers like me that know that the off-site airport lot almost always makes the most sense, unless you are on vacation for more than the math of your Uber cost compared to the offsite lot prices for the number of days you are traveling.

Justin Benfaida