Heathrow meet and greet cars given parking tickets

Stratman

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Valet parking cars left in council car park

More than 200 cars left with Heathrow Airport parking firms were left in a council car park and issued with parking tickets.
In total, 275 vehicles were left over the Easter weekend in West Drayton, about 15 minutes from the airport.
One woman said she was "horrified" to find her vehicle was left in a public car park after she spent more than £100 for it to be left in a secure facility.
Both Hillingdon Council and Heathrow Airport have begun an investigation.
Companies offering meet and greet services meet customers at the airport then take their vehicle to a secure parking facility, and return it when the owner gets back from their trip.
When the BBC visited the council car park, some cars had up to five parking tickets on their windscreens.

more...
Well well well...
 

bob6600

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Oh dear...
 

fabes

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It's been a few of these valet or meet and greet firms now

Any licensing, vetting or approval?
 

Steveml63

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Hi,
There was a company near Gatwick that left cars in a field with keys in the ignition.
Others have come back to find car car has thousands of extra miles - after being used as a mini cab.
Others have had fuel siphoned or new tyres swapped out for worn tyres.
There are a lot of opportunities to do bad things to your car - if you unknowingly used a bad "fleece and greet" company!
Cheers
Steve
 

Smart320

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Now given up driving from West Wales to London Airports by car, as rail is nearly as quick and much cheaper, even when there are two of us. No concerns about where to park and will the car start especially as usually away 3 or 4 weeks. Having researched the various off airport parking companies and seen the feedback I would only ever use the airport long term car parks where I take the car keys with me! This also applies even if am overnighting at an airport hotel with a cheap stay and park deal.
 

brucemillar

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I used to live not too far from Gatwick Airport. My advice to anybody wishing to leave their car with one of these "parking firms"? DON'T.

They blighted the area by simply dumping peoples cars in any free (no charge) available space, and I do means "any" free available space. This includes roadsides, fields, driveways, industrial estates etc. They work on the basis of "get the money in". If as an owner you eventually receive a parking ticket through the post? You will simply contest it it, evidencing the fact that you were "out of the country". That used to be accepted. Now the local authorities are wise to what is happening wit these firms, they are pursuing owners for payment, regardless of being "out of the country".

Think about it? Any legitimate, available large parking space, has been bought up years ago. These firms will just abandon your car wherever they can, regardless of the problems that this may cause you or others. By the time they are shut down? They have made a fortune and just re-open under a new name.
 

CabrioDave

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I can see the point in councils and courts ignoring the "out of the country" defence: otherwise, we ourselves could just park anywhere near the airport and then be immune from tickets.
 

brucemillar

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I can see the point in councils and courts ignoring the "out of the country" defence: otherwise, we ourselves could just park anywhere near the airport and then be immune from tickets.
Agreed.

The issue was/is. If you are genuine? Then you would (correctly) be miffed to receive the ticket in the knowledge, that you were "out of the country" and assumed that your car was safely and securely stored.

What councils are now saying is: You are the registered keeper and it is your problem not theirs = Pay Up!!

What I am saying is: If you use these firms then you should expect your car NOT to be safely and securely stored in a purpose built facility. It is most likely to be dumped in the first available car sized space that they can find.
 

CabrioDave

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Agreed. The councils and courts will probably take the line, though, that the registered keeper is responsible for paying the ticket (and can then sue the company).
 

Peter DLM

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Just use the official service people. If you pay peanuts, you get the idea...
 

alzieboy

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Only ever used meet and greet once , wife had new Golf GTTDi , the guy who collected it tore off like a loony , spent the holiday worrying about the new car , wishing we had got a cab instead , on our return had to wait about 50 mins for car to arrive , when it did it was covered in dirt/ mud , SWMBO tore the fella a new ******** in front of people waiting for car collection .
After this nightmare at ( Gatwick) only ever use long term and take keys with us
 

Abb

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How many more times does this need to be reported in the the press/media, before people actually take notice. You must have been on mars for the past couple of years to not know this goes on and NOT to use such services. Its been on watchdog, rogue traders, daytime tv and in numerous papers.
I genuinely can't believe people still use such services (without doing a little research) and are surprised that their pride and joy has been mistreated.
 

Alex225

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Fortunately I'm 20 minutes drive from Gatwick so any flying I do, I take a cab from home. I guess for many people they don't have that option.

Personally though, regardless of distance I wouldn't even consider using these services. Have heard all sorts about cars being driven around, having extra mileage on them etc.

I recall my granddad using such a service years ago, probably late 90s and complaining that his car was damaged by them. Of course they never owned up to it.
 

GLK

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Never used any of these, and I did a lot of transatlantic travel a few years back ... Either an NCP car park (T2 and T5 ones are quite good), or a cab, if I was going for a longish period.
 

pembssurf

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Smart320 said:
Now given up driving from West Wales to London Airports by car, as rail is nearly as quick and much cheaper, even when there are two of us. No concerns about where to park and will the car start especially as usually away 3 or 4 weeks. Having researched the various off airport parking companies and seen the feedback I would only ever use the airport long term car parks where I take the car keys with me! This also applies even if am overnighting at an airport hotel with a cheap stay and park deal.
We fly from Heathrow term 1-3 travelling from Whitland and have used official Heathrow long stay on site parking for 4 weeks at a time for last 5 years. Long as you book 28 days or more in advance think iv paid no more than £90, used to use train/bus but coming back on a Sunday or after 2pm leaves zero realistic public transport options for us.
 

ckember

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stopped using meet and greeting when purple parking clearly used my e320 as the seat was moved and rubbish in the back. for the money easier to prebooked short stay anyway

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E55BOF

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I used these sorts of firms quite a bit at Gatwick up to a couple of years ago. I never had a problem (apart from the fuel pump on the first E55 seizing while we were away; I can't really blame the parking company for that...) with extra mileage, lower fuel level or a dirty car.
 

dejongj

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I use these services about 1-3 times per month. Never had an issue, never seen undue mileage on the car. Maybe they run them backwards ferris b style. I happily would use the official airport valet parking services anytime.
 

gr1nch

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Asked a mate who uses valet parking regularly at Heathrow and he said he's not had parking tickets, but they did hit other cars with his DB7!

Was also thinking Ferris Bueller. Great movie! Here's the scene when the valets take a road trip in his (friend's Dad's) Ferrari. The URL takes you to the exact start of the scene. Enjoy

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CaP0innggfw

[YOUTUBE]CaP0innggfw[/YOUTUBE]

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400ixl

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As with many things in life, you have to use intelligence and not just take the best price from brokers like Holiday Extras.

You never know who you may be dealing with or what security they have in place.

Use common sense and research the company and their facilities and you will be very unlikely to have an issue.

Used these services hundreds of times, mainly at Stansted mind, and never had an issue or more than 10 miles on the car between collection and delivery. I also have the ability to geo-locate my car whenever I need to and it has always been parked in their secure location.

I would never use a service where I could not identify the company supplying the service and have looked at their history and locations.

If these companies had in the T&C's that the vehicle would be stored in a secure location then trading standards will be able to go after them. Many don't have these guarantees in the T&C's and as such there will be little they can do to stop them operating.
 

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