The airport will invest $400,000 in its car parking facilities by improving its payment system and moving all short term and drop off parking to the the current main car park.
"We've got a lot of people who get frustrated with the machines," Nelson Airport chief executive Rob Evans said.
Ticketless parking will be available by allowing people to insert their credit cards into a machine as they enter the car park and then use the same credit card as they exit the car park.
New machines will include technology for cash, eftpos, credit card and paywave payments.
Nelson man Murray King said the current machines were "terrible" and time-consuming.
"After travelling all day you finally get here and then have to spend time in a queue," he said. He expected the new machines to make a big difference.
The new facilities will result in a price increase in short term parking to $1.50 per hour. The carpark's daily maximum is $10.
Evans said the increase was to compensate for $250,000 worth of new equipment for the new technology.
The long term car park's daily maximum would remain at $8 per day and the weekly maximum for long term car parking will reduce from $56 per week to $50.
Other changes to the road in front of the terminal would also "alleviate congestion" and improve safety as work on the new terminal commences, Evans said.
The road will have an island in the middle with a stopping lane either side - one for taxis and one for public drop-off's.
"That takes away all these people hanging around in front of the terminal," he said.
Nelson City Taxis driver Julia Young said it was currently very difficult to pick people up in front of the terminal when the airport was busy.
"Sometimes you can't even park - it's just really hard at the moment," she said. She hoped the changes would make it easier for taxis to pick up customers.
The current pay and display carparking located in the middle of the terminal car park will be converted to rental carparking.
The carparking improvements would be for the interim and the new terminal design, set to be complete in 2018, would include more car parking space.
The airport has had a big year with three new airlines and an all time high of 80,200 passengers through its doors in December 2015 alone.
"As demand continues to increase, there's a need to improve customer safety and provide modern technology to enhance the customer experience," Evans said.
Economic Development Agency chief executive Bill Findlater said he was encouraged by the airport's decision to upgrade the parking facilities now instead of waiting two years for the completion of the new terminal.
"It's important that our airport infrastructure can service the increased number of visitors, so it is great news that Nelson Airport is responding quickly to improve its car park," he said.
Work on the car park will begin Monday February 15 and is expected to be completed in the first week of March.
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