Motorists waiting to pick up arriving passengers can now grab dinner from food trucks parked at airport cellphone lots, where short-term parking is free for those who stay with their vehicles. Today's cellphone lots are starting to offer far more than just a place to park your car, with services ranging from sit-down meals to car wash services.
The airport food truck trend started with Tampa International Airport in Florida,where in 2012 food trucks were allowed to park at its cellphone lot during a curbside parking rule transition. That program worked so well that a different food truck pulls into the cellphone lot every weekday, with the schedule posted on the airport's Facebook page.
Other airports now hosting food trucks in their cellphone lots include Tucson International Airport, Long Beach Airport, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.
Other airports are now joining in. Seattle-Tacoma International and Phoenix Sky Harbor International airports are among those exploring adding food trucks to cellphone lots and Sacramento International Airport in California just put out a request for proposals.
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MIA officials are forging ahead with plans to develop a free parking lot on the airport's perimeter where drivers can wait for a cellphone call from their arriving human cargo.
Free bottled water and newspapers, $9 coupons, carwashes, oil changes and valet parking are just some of the inducements that D/FW and nearby parking-lot owners are wielding this weekend.
Thousands of $38.50 citations are issued each year to people who pull over on the side of the road leading to the airport -- a no-no in the age of heightened post-9/11 security.