darkness:In Auckland (who admittedly have a little more ground area to work with) they don't even police too strictly cars waiting for a few minutes for passengers to emerge from the terminal.
thats not true. I have to pick up my partner from the airport on regular occasions. And they won't even let me sit there for 5 mins waiting. Pretty much shoo me on straight away, even if theres heaps of room for other cars.
Probably depends on the time of day in Auckland. We have made a number of trips where my sister-in-law has picked us up around 7.30-8:30pm and has said she has been sitting there for 10-15 minutes without being asked to move on.
Back to Wellington, I have the luxury of a work car-park in downtown Wellington, so have used the Airport Flyer many times to go from Willis St to the airport and back. Great value at $8 one way (less with a Snapper card) and nice seats, comfortable surroundings.
Would be nice to have a train service direct to the airport, but I don't think Wellington has the population base to justify the expenditure.
I used to travel to Sydney for work a fair bit and always got a taxi from Sydney airport to North Sydney, but after one memorable occasion when my flight over took 3h 20m and my taxi ride 2h 30m, I started catching the train to North Sydney instead.