Tucson International Airport (TUS) is one of my favorite airports because it is a smaller airport that is extremely easy to get in and out of. There are multiple different options for parking and for waiting for passengers and I will explain all of the options below as well as how much each of them costs.
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The Tucson international Airport has a great website for helping you find parking and even reserve parking spaces. You can also find maps that break down where the different parking lots are.
Another great feature is that you can actually check out how full each of the parking areas is by checking the website. So I’d highly recommend you check out their website before heading over to the airport.
Cell phone waiting parking lot
If you are arriving at Tucson International Airport to pick up a passenger but you are arriving before they land, the perfect place to wait is the cell phone waiting parking lot.
This is a smaller parking lot with 28 spaces and the driver must remain with the vehicle while waiting for the arriving passengers.
The good news is that the parking lot is free.
You can find this parking lot by following the main Tucson Boulevard into the airport and then simply looking for the cell phone waiting lot sign as you approach the terminals.
You will take a right on Airport Drive and then a right into the parking lot. If the parking lot is full, there will be an overflow for additional parking spaces so be on the lookout for that. If you still can’t find an open space then just consider looping back around a couple of times and checking back. Eventually, a spot will likely open up.
Note that there are signs asking you to turn your engine off and to consider the environment if you are going to be idling for a long time.
The hourly parking spaces are the closest to the terminal. There are 447 spaces located under solar canopies so you will find these to be partially shaded.
Depending on the angle of the sun, your vehicle might be exposed to the sun which of course can be quite intense in southern Arizona. So be prepared for a potentially hot vehicle, especially if you’re parking during the summer months.
The rate is $1 for up to the first 30 minutes and then $1 per 30 minutes up to a maximum of $13 per day.
(I’m not sure if like some other airports you can avoid a charge if you are in and out in under 15 minutes.)
The daily parking is also located under the solar canopies and so your vehicle may or may not be exposed to direct sunlight depending on the angle of the sun and which spot you were able to get.
Therefore, if you are at all worried about substantial sun exposure to your vehicle then you might want to just utilize the parking garage.
This parking lot has 918 spaces and you will be charged $2 per hour up to a maximum of $10 per day.
You should note that there are not any accessible parking spaces. If you need an accessible parking space, consider using one of the accessible spaces in the hourly lot.
Just be sure that you show your handicapped placard on departure so that you receive the lower rate then would normally be applied in the daily lot. Accessible parking spaces are also available in the Garage and the Economy lot.
If you’d like, you can also choose to park in the parking garage.
There are 605 spaces that can be used for either hourly parking or for long-term parking. This parking is found adjacent to the car rental center which is just east of the terminal.
It’s a little confusing when you first arrive at the airport but to get there you can enter from Los Reales Road (Country Club Road) or follow the signs from the terminal departure level. It’s going to feel like you are driving far away from the airport for a second but just follow the signs and you will end up where you need to be.
The rates are $3 per hour up to a maximum of $10 per day.
If you are trying to save as much money as possible then you will likely be interested in economy parking.
The economy parking lot is the largest with 5,342 spaces which are designed for long-term parking. This parking lot is located off Corona Road, east of the entrance to the terminal area.
The rate is $4.50 per day.
There is a courtesy shuttle that operates roughly every 15 minutes. The shuttle also runs 24 hours a day and seven days a week.
After you park you can wait under one of the covered shelters in the lot for the shuttle to arrive but other times the shuttle may meet you at your vehicle after you arrive.
If you wanted to walk from the economy parking lot, it would probably take you 15 minutes but I’m not sure about the status of the sidewalk from the parking lot to the terminal.
Economy covered parking
Within the economy parking area, there is a much smaller covered parking area which houses 303 spaces.
The spaces are also reserved for long-term parking and the covered area is located in the north east corner of the economy parking area. This covered parking area typically has higher occupancy rates than the open parking lot so you might want to consider reserving a spot in some circumstances.
You will be able to use the same shuttle that serves the economy parking lot. Rates for the covered economy parking area may range between $4.50 and six dollars.
Tucson International Airport parking FAQ
For the hourly parking lot, the rate is $1 for up to the first 30 minutes and then $1 per 30 minutes up to a maximum of $13 per day.
The shuttle bus runs approximately every 15 minutes.
Yes, the shuttle bus will run 24 hours a day.
The rates are $3 per hour up to a maximum of $10 per day.
You can wait for a passenger for free by parking in the cell phone waiting lot.
You can find covered parking in the economy parking lot and also in the parking garage. The hourly parking and daily parking lots are partially covered by solar canopies.
Yes, you can use a credit card to pay for your parking. Look for the EasyPay machines whenever you exit the parking areas.
Yes, you can reserve a parking space online but you will be charged a $2 reservation fee.
The cheapest way to park at Tucson International Airport (TUS) is to use the economy parking lot which will cost you $4.50 per day.
You can easily walk from the hourly or daily parking lots and the parking garage to the airport terminal.
As you can tell, there are several different ways to park at Tucson International Airport (TUS).
You can park for under five dollars a day if you are willing to take a shuttle bus from the economy parking lot. However, if you value convenience and want to be closer to the terminal you will be paying closer to $10 day.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.