Pasadena to LAX
September 17, 2017 6:08 PM   Subscribe

I haven't been to LAX on my own in about 6 years. Tuesday I fly out of there for a day trip and need to be at the Spirit Airlines gate by 5 am to check in for my 7am flight. Where do I park and how do I get to the right drop off point for Spirit? Is there a shuttle? Do you recommend against or for any other things I may not be thinking about? Thank you!
posted by Hermione Granger to Travel & Transportation (8 answers total)
Park at Lot C (that's the long term one) and take the shuttle. It stops at each erminal. Google tells me Spirit is at Terminal 3. Easy Peasy.
posted by notyou at 6:48 PM on September 17, 2017 [1 favorite]

Do you definitely want to drive? Your options are as follows:

- Take a lyft / uber / cab / shuttle - this can actually be cheaper than parking depending on how long you'll be gone. I think Lyft is the cheapest at around $30 - 40 each way (roughly $75 round trip)

- Take public transit - the easiest way from Pasadena is probably to take the Gold Line to Union Station and the FlyAway bus from there. This is by far the cheapest but probably least convenient option - it'll be around $12 each way / $24 round trip.

- Drive and park offsite at one of the many third party lots (park n fly, the parking spot, or a million other if you google) - this runs around $12 - 20 a day. I'd classify the airport economy parking (lot c) in this too, since it's around the same price and also requires a shuttle ride from the terminal (just tell the shuttle driver your airline and they'll take you to the right terminal).

- Park in the central area and walk to the terminal for $30 / day. Maybe worth it for the convenience for a super short trip.
posted by insectosaurus at 6:50 PM on September 17, 2017 [5 favorites]

Insectosaurus really covered your options. One off-site parking lot that we've succesfully used is at the Marriot Hotel on Century. (You don't need to be staying at the hotel to use it.)
posted by BlahLaLa at 7:12 PM on September 17, 2017

For a day trip, leaving that early in the morning, I'd probably use The Parking Spot and reserve my space a day in advance. I got stuck coming home one night last year, using a lower-end hotel parking situation, and because I was flying out of The Awful Terminal (you are probably also, if it's Spirit) at the ass end of the airport with very few customers they kept filling up before they got to me and I waited for two hours. I'll never use anything but The Parking Spot or airport parking again, as I watched a shitload of those shuttles go by while I waited.

However I now always use the FlyAway, but it's really convenient for me to get it out of Van Nuys.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:48 PM on September 17, 2017

Ensure that you triple confirm your terminal. LAX has shuffled and shifted airlines between terminals in Summer of 2017 and you must check the most recent information.

Driving from Pasadena to LAX might take you a 1/2 hour at 5 a.m.

I agree that Lot C is best when you are [1] spending your own money and [2] have plenty of time. You would save $8-10 over other parking options. There is a risk of agonizingly long delays with the shuttle bus.

I used a valet parking option which is $19-24 per day. There is no shuttle bus involved, they drop you off and pick you up with your own car, so you drive directly home from the terminal.
posted by ohshenandoah at 8:22 PM on September 17, 2017 [3 favorites]

In exchange for a modestly longer shuttle ride, you can self-park at 405 Airport parking for about $8 a day. It's been reliable in my experience.
posted by space_lab at 10:27 PM on September 17, 2017

Response by poster: I ended up going with saving myself a space at The Parking Spot. I had forgotten about that place -- I've used it multiple times before and just completely blanked on it this time. Thank you so much for your input. Spirit flights are so cramped -- the more time I can get to walk around beforehand, the better.
posted by Hermione Granger at 10:57 PM on September 17, 2017

One more data point for future searchers: Parking Spot or Marriot have always worked best for me.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:27 AM on September 18, 2017

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