New parking guidance system launches first phase at SEA Airport Garage ahead of busy Presidents Day over weekend

A new automated parking guidance system designed to indicate the beginnings of open stands in the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) parking lot ahead of the busy Presidents’ Day holiday weekend. The first two floors of the eight-story garage are now open with LED lighting and smart camera sensors to indicate available spaces and help customers locate accessible parking spaces. The guidance system will cut booth search time in half and lay the foundation for future technology-driven customer service integrations.

After a slower-than-expected January travel period due to the Omicron Variant, the Presidents’ Day holiday is expected to see more travelers and traffic on airport routes. SEA Airport suggests finding alternative ways to get to the airport to avoid the worst traffic jams and the longest queues. Additionally, travelers can find stress-free ways to avoid waiting throughout the vacation travel process.

Find that parking spot and your car faster

If you plan on driving, Airport SEA is opening the first phase of one of the nation’s largest-scale Automated Parking Guidance System (APGS) installations, with over 12,000 locations! The first and second floors are now equipped with APGS Park Assist. Smart sensors and red or green lights above traffic lanes help you quickly locate open stalls. Blue lights indicate available accessible stalls. The new system also provides improved wayfinding signage so users can navigate the rows more efficiently. Additionally, each sensor features camera-based License Plate Recognition (LPR) technology to help locate your vehicle, improve parking policy enforcement, and improve monitoring and surveillance. vehicle security in the garage with motion-activated video surveillance (can you say ‘we’re watching you, catalytic converter thieves?’).

Installation of the system will continue throughout this year and will cover all floors by early 2023. With full installation, the system will provide additional benefits to customers who pre-book parking, providing guaranteed seat designation and variable pricing options during periods of low occupancy. – all customer experience improvements.

The project will also almost double the number of electric vehicle charging stations, with the possibility of increasing charging capacity for further expansion.

Safety first, avoid over shoulder parking

Vehicles are encouraged to use the new reconfigured mobile phone parking lot and avoid unsafe parking along the shoulder of the airport driveways. Violators will be cited as the Port of Seattle Police is working with the Washington State Patrol to emphasize patrolling during the holidays.

In numbers

For the holiday travel period, the busiest days precede the Presidents Day weekend. The Thursday and Friday before the holiday will see the highest volume with 129,000 and 124,000 travelers passing through the airport each day. Wednesday February 16 will see 105,000 travelers while Saturday is also expected to be busy with 109,000 travellers. This represents about 80% of passenger volume before the pandemic in 2019, when passenger volume reached 165,000 per day and almost 70% more than in 2020, reaching 87,000 per day. It should be noted that the busiest times at SEA are during the summer months of June through August.

What’s the best advice for travellers?

  • It’s been busy since the last time you were here – get there early! Two hours before a domestic flight, three hours before an international flight.
  • Masks are still mandatory at the airport – and be sure to check your destination’s COVID-19 requirements for entry. Visit XpresCheck if tests are required for your destination, they are available at baggage claim.
  • Consider other modes of transportation to get to the airport.
  • Use SEA Spot Saver to secure your spot in the TSA line and avoid crowded security lines at the airport.
  • Download (or update!) the flySEA app to get alerts, maps, information and more.
  • Use Order SEA, our mobile ordering service, including door-to-door food delivery from the entire airport.

Other Ways to Get to SEA Airport

The SEA airport car park is busy.

  • Take the hassle out of driving with Sound Transit’s light rail transit. Public transport is by far the best option if you want to avoid traffic jams.
  • Take a ride with app-based taxis or rideshares like Uber and Lyft, or other ground transportation.
  • Rent your own ride. All car rental companies operate from an off-site rental car center where dedicated shuttles transport passengers free of charge 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • Pedal power! Yes, you can even get to the airport by bike with bike racks and two ways to get to the airport by bike.
  • If you still plan to park, we recommend waiting at least 30 minutes to find a spot. Off-site car parks are also expected to be busy. Parking reservations are recommended.
  • If you are picking up or dropping off loved ones
    • Check out the new and improved batch of cell phones! The new ramp is a game changer with better flow for entry and exit, you can pick up your passengers more easily. Use it instead of parking on the shoulder, which is dangerous and illegal!
    • travel tip! Use the Departures Promenade for overnight pickup and the Arrivals Promenade for morning passenger drop-off.

Give me the basics of the traveler

  1. the CDC advice for travelers changes based on your COVID-19 vaccination status. Check with your airline for the state or country where you plan to travel.
  2. Be prepared for security checks. SEA and TSA want to help you get through security checkpoints as quickly as possible. Travelers are required to remove electronic devices larger than a cell phone from carry-on baggage. Also remove food and liquids from your carry-on baggage, be prepared to hold your boarding pass for examination, and wear your mask. You can also view the latest identification and documentation requirements.
  3. Need more travel tips? Our Customer Care team has the best advice for navigating SEA like a great traveler.
  4. SEA is adding new services to make travel more accessible and improve the travel experience beyond Americans with Disabilities Act requirements. Check out our SEA social story developed for travelers with sensory sensitivities such as autism, as well as great general tips for kids. Learn more about accessibility at SEA. The interactive map on the flySEA app offers accessible routes.
  5. Check with the City of SeaTac to see if there are road construction projects which could impede your access to the airport.


Perry Cooper | SEA Airport Press Officer
(206) 787-4923 | [email protected]

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