Parking Hits Peak Demand - Plan Ahead

CLT is seeing large crowds this summer travel season. Parking is in high demand, and CLT is experiencing fuller parking facilities.

As a reminder to passengers, travelers are encouraged to use alternative transportation. Get dropped off at the Airport, carpool, ride CATS new Airport Connector or Airport Sprinter, or use one of the many taxi and ground transportation companies serving the Airport.   
Below are more SmartPark tips passengers should keep in mind when visiting Charlotte Douglas:


Driving to CLT:

  • Arrive at CLT two hours before departure time.
  • Peak travel days at the Airport are traditionally Monday mornings, Thursday and Sunday evenings.
  • Be alert, slow down, obey the speed limit and drive more cautiously while adjusting to CLT’s new entrance road. Helpful videos showcasing the 1.3 mile route are available on CLT’s YouTube channel.


  • Check parking conditions before leaving for Charlotte Douglas by viewing a real time parking map or calling 704.359.5555.
  • Visit Business Valet where parking will always be available. AmeriPark is CLT’s new valet service provider, overseeing customer service for both Curbside and Business Valet. Call 704.359.4038 for more information.
  • Follow the directions on the variable message signs that have been strategically placed along roadways to help drivers navigate the change.
  • Be sure to take a lot locator card from the SmartPark maps inside the parking lot bus shelters. This will help you locate your car upon return.
  • Take advantage of the Airport’s Pay&Go stations. Four Pay&Go stations are located at the Daily deck’s shuttle bus stop and two more are located on the curbside in front of the Arrivals/Baggage area. To use, travelers place their parking ticket in a Pay&Go station and pay by credit card. A validated ticket will be returned. Drivers may then proceed to any lane in the designated lots and insert their validated ticket in the machine to exit.
  • Use the credit card only or prepaid lanes to save time exiting the Airport’s parking lots. Credit card only lanes are available in all lots. To learn more about how SmartPark Express works, watch this video.
  • Work is underway on the new entrance to Long Term 1 parking lot. Please be mindful of the construction equipment while entering the lot.
  • The up escalator that leads from Baggage Claim - Zone C to Ticketing will be closed approximately six weeks for refurbishment to prepare for the increased passenger traffic associated with the opening of the new Hourly deck in November. Passengers are being directed to the elevators, escalators and stairways on the west and east areas of the terminal. 
Alternative transportation to CLT:
  • Get dropped off at the Airport, carpool, or use one of the many taxi and ground transportation companies serving the Airport.
  • Ride CATS’ new Airport Connector or Airport Sprinter. Visit or call 704.336.7433 for more information. 

Picking up passengers:

  • Use one of CLT’s two FREE Cell Phone lots located on Rental Car Road.
  • Unattended vehicles and extended parking is prohibited adjacent to the departure and arrivals curbside.  Greeters and assisting family members who must access the terminal are recommended to do one of the following:
    1. Park in the Daily lot/deck and ride the shuttle bus to the terminal.  The first 30 minutes of Daily parking is free.  The next hour cost a dollar.
    2. Park in Cell Phone lot #2.  There is a short paved walking path to the terminal.

Dropping off passengers:

  • Give yourself plenty of time to arrive at CLT. 
  • Pay special attention to signage directing visitors to the terminal.
  • Remember that only immediate loading and unloading are permitted on the curbside. It is prohibited to leave vehicles unattended on Departures/Ticketing or Arrivals/Baggage Claim levels. If your vehicle is left unattended, it will be ticketed and towed.
  • Traffic control officers are positioned along the Airport’s entrance road to assist with wayfinding.
Assisting passengers with special needs:
  • The following are recommended for dropping off and picking up passengers with special needs:
    1. Parking in the Business Valet deck is the best option.   
    2. Accessible buses run regularly to and from all parking areas.
    3. Designated special needs drop-off areas are located adjacent to Zone B on both the arrival and departure levels.
For questions, assistance, or preplanning regarding special needs curbside drop-offs or pickups call 704.315.8720 or 704.430.8650.  For general parking questions or assistance, call 704.359.4037.
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