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I'd like to respond to your reader who suffered a poor experience with APCOA airport parking.

As Communications Manager at Exeter International Airport, I wrote to your reader DC of Brusford concerning his poor experience of APCOA airport parking as follows:

“I now have pleasure in offering an explanation for the confusion with your booking and problems at our car park barrier. The booking quoted a vehicle registration number of W637 MAU. However, as you can see from the attached images the registration plate was read as W837 MAU by the automatic number plate recognition system because one of the bolts holding the plate and the staining beneath made the 6 appear as an 8. The vehicle therefore did not match the one quoted at the time of the booking, the pre-booked (paid for) part of the stay was not recognised, and the full stay was chargeable at the full rate. If the registration number is recognised the ticket would have the booking reference number also printed on it and under normal circumstances an over-stay would be added to the pre-booked period but charged at the full rate. We would always encourage car park users with such issues to contact the airport direct as we can provide the comprehensive answers sometimes required.”

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That was very courteous, but unfortunately the Protection of Freedoms Bill Schedule 4 lays down a procedure over parking disputes that seemingly takes them out of the hands of the landowners themselves: See www.honestjohn.co.uk/faq/private-parking-penalties/
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