NCP, the company behind most of Britain’s car parks, has been accused of profiteering from Olympic fever. At a time when the British government and LOCOG are telling the country to get involved, take the stage etc. it appears NCP is not ‘in it together‘.
Prices at London sites of the Australian-owned operator have been tripled to coincide with the influx of visitors to the capital.
NCP head of operations Ben Heath confessed:
“We have increased the tariffs at some sites because we know a large number of additional customers will arrive for the Olympics. The average increase across the 38 sites is 40 per cent. It’s a significant increase, but we are investing a significant amount of money. The largest percentage increases are for the lowest tariffs.”
NCP claim the hikes are necessary to cover the costs of extra equipment and staff required during the games. It was not a position that held water with the AA who claimed NCP ‘deserve an Olympic gold for sheer gall.’
The Price Hikes
- NCP Brewer Street, Soho daily rate has risen by 28 per cent from an already incredible £47 to £60! Parking for an hour rose from £7 to £10, two from £14 to £20, four from £27 to £40, and six from £40 to £50.
- NCP Kensington Royal Garden Hotel has gone up £35 to £45 a day. Two hours jumped from £8 to £15, 2-4 from £16 to £25, 4-6 £26 to £35.
- A NCP Docklands City the daily price has more than doubled – £12 to £25.
- At NCP Whitechapel East near The Olympic Park the £12 day rate will now cost you £32.
“Our locations are prime locations and I’d expect a greater increase in demand. Customers don’t like queues, they don’t want inconvenience, they want things hassle-free. I do not agree we are profiteering at all. We’ve done it for the customer. It’s a temporary increase. We’ve invested in more people and equipment. We have recruited more people and we are training them. We have invested large amounts of money to prepare for the Olympics.”
AA president Edmund King is having none of Heath’s justification:
“It’s astonishing. This smacks of profiteering. I can’t see any transport reason to justify it. It makes London look like the rip-off capital of Europe with excessive parking fees. It gives a very bad impression of the capital and of Britain to visitors from the rest of the UK and from abroad. There’s no justification. The overheads remain largely the same. Motorists may well ask why NCP aren’t upping the service the rest of the year.”