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Phoenix rental car customers will find added convenience at the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Rental Car Center. The facility houses all of Sky Harbor's rental car operations under one roof. The rental car counters are located inside of a 125,000 square foot customer service building which sits on top of a three level parking garage. The garage has the capacity to hold 5,600 rental cars ready for customer pickup.

The Rental Car Center provides one stop shopping for rental car customers at Sky Harbor. Arriving passengers will no longer have to look for individual rental car company buses at the terminal curbs. They take a designated Rental Car Center bus for a five minute ride to the facility. Customers are dropped off at the customer service level of the building, where all rental car counters are located side by side. Customers return their rental cars to the same location.

The Sky Harbor Rental Car Center is conveniently located west of the airport near two major interstate highways, I-10 and I-17. It benefits Sky Harbor and its customers in a number of ways, easing congestion on the airport roadways and reducing confusion at the curbs. Here is a map and directions to the Phoenix Sky Harbor Rental Car Center.

Phoenix is the 3rd largest airport rental car market in the United States. More than one million rental car transactions are processed every year at Sky Harbor.

Here are the amenities in the new Sky Harbor Rental Car Center:

  • A traffic information system, which shows freeway drive times to various locations around the Phoenix area.
  • A staffed information counter offering personalized assistance along with printed materials.
  • Full coffee services, food to go, snacks and sundries for sale.
  • ATMs
  • Free luggage carts
Note: I am closing this thread to comments. If you would like to share your experience, good or bad, at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, you can do that here.

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May 11, 2007 at 1:39 pm
(1) Bill K says:

No address or directions! No gas stations nearby!!!!!!! How stupid!

May 11, 2007 at 1:48 pm
(2) phoenix says:

The address is 1805 E. Sky Harbor Circle South. Here are the directions:
From I-10 east: Use the Washington/Jefferson St. Exit 148. Go south (straight) on the frontage road to Sky Harbor Circle South and turn right. Follow the signs.
From I-10 west: Use the Buckeye Road Exit 149 and turn left on Buckeye Road. Take Buckeye Rd. to Sky Harbor Circle south and turn left. Follow the signs.

May 11, 2007 at 8:55 pm
(3) Car Rental Insurance says:

Car rental insurance can be expensive. I rent cars almost every week and I’m always asked if I want to purchase insurance for my rental car. Although the coverage costs only a few dollars a day, it can really add up if you’re renting a vehicle for a week. The question many people have, is do they really need insurance on their rental car.

Before you walk through the doors of the car rental company. Your own auto policy may provide your coverage. Call your insurance company and check before you get to the rental car provider. If your current policy doesn’t provide this type of coverage and you will be purchasing a rental car regularly, I recommend you call your agent about adding it. Another place to check for coverage is your credit card. Some cards provide a car rental collision damage protection service. Ask a representative from your credit card company to see if you are eligible for these services, and if so, what is covered. Often, you would need to charge the rental car on your credit card to take advantage of this benefit.

July 9, 2007 at 5:53 pm
(4) Pete Griffen says:

Beware – there are NO gas stations in proximity to the Sky Harbor Car Rental Center. The closest is 6th St. and Buckeye Rd. There are NONE between ANY of the freeway exits and the Center. All of the car rental agencies charge double the rate for gas (i.e. $6.99/gallon)
Fill up well ahead of your return or pay through the nose!

August 13, 2008 at 1:35 pm
(5) Larry says:

The Phoenix Airport Rental Car Center is government run amok. It’s miles from the terminals and convenient for no one but the government, certainly not the business traveler. The Rental Car Center easily adds an hour (or steals it) from your day. The buses take city streets and there is not even a dedicated travel lane. A 5 minute ride, don’t count on it! The charges are incredible for the inconvenience. Check your bill and see how much you are paying for the “convenience”. Phoenix Car Rental Center gets my vote for the WORST car rental center in the world.

October 29, 2008 at 11:55 am
(6) Rudy says:

Sky Harbor car rental return was not well thought out. Once you leave your car and travel several minutes through a maze to get to the upstairs main floor and then travel outside to catch your shuttle, which may be pulling away just as you arrive, you are already exhausted and frustrated as you await your ride. Once on the shutle, you wonder if you are going to the airport or Tucson, as the ride seems to never end. A chuck of your day is spent in travelling this maze and riding a bus that is very inconvenient, time consuming and way too bulky for the frequent traveler.

I fly to New Orleans from Phoenix on most occassions and the car rental shuttle picks you up in the parking garage just outside the baggage claim, you are at the rental lot in about five minutes and the main road for travel is about a quarter of a mile away.

There’s no place like home!

November 12, 2008 at 4:36 am
(7) Jane says:

Your directions for returning to the car rental center are terrible…..unless of course you already know how to get there.

November 12, 2008 at 10:02 am
(8) Judy Hedding says:


What was the problem? Where were you coming from?

December 15, 2008 at 7:36 pm
(9) Cheesy says:

I have no problem with the center other than it’s quite a ways away. My real issue is with the fees and taxes which end up being 75%, yes that’s right, about 75% of your car rental charge from the rental company. Guess visitors and business people shouldn’t mind.

January 27, 2009 at 10:59 pm
(10) Todd says:

As a business traveler I agree PHX partially due to this poorly designed and ludicrously inconvenient car rental facility. Hard to find, far away and huge it is a time suck. Cap it off with PHX’s new Flash Cameras for speeding and it makes this market was of the least friendly to business travelers. Way to go AZ!!

February 11, 2009 at 2:57 pm
(11) Jim says:

It’s not such a big deal for me. I fly into PHX frequently to see clients in Scottsdale, Tempe, and Phoenix. I’m Hertz Gold and Avis Preferred, so I could care less about the counters. And the bus ride to the rental car facility? You should try Atlanta sometime! I’ve honestly had no major problems at the PHX rental facility. Anyone reasonably intelligent who can read signs and follow directions will do fine.

March 1, 2009 at 11:53 am
(12) jake says:

Does anyone know of an alternate car rental facility near the airport? The fees for using the airport facility are over 1/3 of the rental bill. I would like to avoid the outragous fees from the airport facility.

March 1, 2009 at 11:55 am
(13) Judy Hedding says:
March 11, 2009 at 10:09 am
(14) Ralph says:

those taxes your paying are for the stadium and for othe slush funds out there, its a ripoff.

May 23, 2009 at 11:12 pm
(15) Glenda says:

Can a car rented at Sky Harbor Airport Rental Car Center/Hertz be returned at another location, say Mesa?

May 24, 2009 at 10:37 am
(16) Judy Hedding says:

Hello Glenda,

Whether or not that is possible for any car rental company depends on the company itself, and is not determined by the Sky Harbor Rental Center. You would have to contact Hertz to coordinate that:

August 31, 2009 at 3:40 pm
(17) AGFenn says:

I agree with Larry. The center is a nightmare.

Only a politician can see the virtues it, because there are none. When I get a car, I want to get in and out.

September 20, 2009 at 3:14 pm
(18) Sean says:

So many negative comments! I felt the need to counter them as an international user of Sky Harbor. The car rental center is extremely well sign posted from all routes and as you enter the centre it is very clear as to how to find your correct rental provider. Buses never seem to keep you waiting any length of time to get to or from the terminal so if you just miss one don’t fret! Another will draw up very soon after.

The journey is usually about ten minutes to your terminal so just relax and enjoy the ride. Too many people allow airport stress to take them over. Be in plenty of time for your flight so you need not worry over the journey time.

As for gas stations just get off any exits and you are never far from one. Maybe we are all just getting too soft and need spoon feeding all the time! What did we do before the internet and google maps etc….used a little more common sense perhaps.

October 14, 2009 at 9:09 am
(19) Steve says:

I can’t believe all of the negative comments! I find it extremely user friendly except for the quasi-English speaking counter help at the various rental places. This sure beats trying to find a rental place in the middle of Phoenix or Mesa. What a bunch of whiners!!!

December 2, 2009 at 6:41 pm
(20) Alan says:

This is the worst rental car setup in the US.
1) Inconvenient location
2) Crowded, slow, infrequent buses
3) Gouging and theft from visitors – PHX fees can be more than the car rental

I take a cab to the nearest off-airport rental center. It is inconvenient and adds to the cost, but much less inconvenient and much cheaper than being mulcted by PHX politicians.

December 22, 2009 at 7:57 pm
(21) Cathy says:

My husband and I were in the Sky Harbor Shuttle bus yesterday to go to the rental car area. I do not know what you use in the shuttles but the smell is TERRIBLE! We were on it twice yesterday and I have washed our clothes 3 times and cna not get it out. What kind of toxins are you putting in our bodies?It needs to stop, there are a lot of good fragance free cleaners out there, try them. I will never rent a car there again if it keeps smelling like that. We fly there ever 6-8 weeks and the shuttle did not use to smell like that.

January 5, 2010 at 3:12 pm
(22) Kent says:

I need to drop off a rental car and will be picked up by a friend. Is there spot at the rental center for a pickup by a private party?? Anyone?

January 5, 2010 at 3:25 pm
(23) Judy Hedding says:

Hi Kent,

There is a visitor parking area (free) so they can come and park and meet you in the rental center.

January 13, 2010 at 2:05 pm
(24) Ed from Texas says:

I’m going to Phoenix for the first time in a couple of months and I’m just stunned at how much it costs to rent a car there. The tax rates are certainly outrageous, but the base rates themselves are a good 2-3x higher than anywhere else in the country that I’ve looked at today. The best I’ve been able to come up with is $160 for a two day rental. $80/day!! For that same time, at at least a dozen other cities around the country, I’m looking are more like $30/day for the same car.


January 13, 2010 at 3:23 pm
(25) Judy Hedding says:

Hi Ed,

Yes, our car rentals are expensive here. They penalize renters on short-term rentals, too. This is high season here, and in a couple of months we are right in the middle of Spring Training; many of the cheaper cars have probably already been reserved.

I saw about $75 per day (including fees) at Hotwire.com

I checked a few other high season cities, and with the exception of Rent-a-Wreck and similar companies, the prices for a two day rental were not much cheaper.

Depending on what you’ll do and where you’ll be, it might be cheaper for you to take a cab or light rail to wherever you are going for those two days.

January 24, 2010 at 1:50 am
(26) Julie says:

If you are a Costco member Costco’s Travelers guide has great coupons in the back. I rented a Full Size (Chev Impala) for 9 days for $226.00 from Alamo. Fox car rentals also had some decent prices. Good Luck!!!
The car rental facility…… The pits. Right when you do not think you can go another step or lift your suitcase again you think there is light at the end of the tunnel when you reach the rental facility. Then you have to lug all your belongings down to the bottom level and drag everything across another parking lot in search of your rental.. To me it would be a great place for a skycap…. their tips would awesome….. and the rental industry would have positive feedbacks in place of the negative. The facility is very difficult to navigate to and from…..

February 6, 2010 at 6:20 pm
(27) Salem D. Elia says:

Why can’t you leave the entire terminal address including the zip code on the web page , so we can look up the directions no matter where we are coming from.

February 6, 2010 at 7:15 pm
(28) Judy Hedding says:


I do have the entire address including the zip code. Click on the link for the map. It’s right there.

March 12, 2010 at 8:57 am
(29) Happy Traveller says:

Sorry all you negativos, but this facility is the best thing since (insert your favorite metaphoric object here). Easy to find, no hassles with looking for one specific rental shuttle, etc. That’s why Las Vegas copied the idea with their own centralized off-terminal car rental facility. Yes the fees are higher. But you can counter that by doing a bit of research before renting – check multiple rental companies, or a site like rentalcars.com, Hotwire, etc. I have memberships in all the majors and have never failed to find a price that I’m comfortable with for a car that I’m comfortable with. I almost never select anything larger than a midsize, and with memberships and frequent flyer affiliations there are often deals for free upgrades etc. Quit whining and expecting a free lunch. (P.S. Kudos Judy for maintaining your decorum – must be difficult with some of these losers posting.)

March 12, 2010 at 12:45 pm
(30) Judy says:

Hey Happy Traveler — different opinions make the world go ’round! You should see my email inbox! ;-)

Stay Happy and safe in your travels!

April 24, 2010 at 4:15 pm
(31) Kathy B says:

Any suggestions on how to manage a disabled elderly relative and returning a car? There is no way that my mother can navigate the trip on the bus, and it will be tough for me to manage as well.

April 24, 2010 at 11:49 pm
(32) Judy Hedding says:

Of course, you could always just return the car and take a cab from the rental car center to your terminal….

April 24, 2010 at 4:52 pm
(33) Judy Hedding says:

Hi Kathy B.,
Anyone who is disabled to that degree and not using a wheelchair is going to have problems getting around anywhere. If she was in a wheelchair, she could access the shuttle. The only thing that comes to mind is to return the car, take a cab back to wherever she is, and then have a cab take the two of you to the airport.

Alternatively, try calling the airport and see if there is any way you can arrange for a wheelchair at the Rental Center. Sky Harbor

May 4, 2010 at 5:00 pm
(34) Carol says:

Just returned from a trip to Arizona. After reading all the comments about the car rental place I was prepared for the worst. But after landing and retrieving our bags we hopped aboard the shuttle and were off to the car rental center. It was super easy to find Hertz – had to wait in line a little while, but not bad. Got our car and were on our way to Show Low. On the was back I put the address in our Garmin and had absolutely no problem finding the center. Signs were posted everywhere directing you to the return area. Not sure if we were just “lucky” – but it was quite easy.

September 4, 2010 at 7:36 pm
(35) John B. Sloop says:

Also, when calling Hertz at Sky Harbor, the number is 1-800-654-3131 or 602-267-4947. PLEASE people… check the number before calling to make sure that you are actually calling Hertz!!! I work at a business at the airport and we are constantly getting phone calls to rent cars and we are NOT Hertz!!!

October 1, 2010 at 12:22 pm
(36) Graeme G says:

Can’t understand what all the fuss is about. Hassle free and cost free shuttle to the centre, and on our way within an hour of clearing immigration after a flight from London LHR.
The ‘return’ signposting is first class and we were back at T4 20 minutes after dropping the car. Charges….now that’s another matter, but isn’t that a universal gripe?

December 10, 2010 at 12:49 pm
(37) Shananna says:

No directions, if you go through the airport it takes you on a wild goose chase to get there! Get the address before hand so you can drive directly there. DON’T GO THROUGH THE AIRPORT or you will be really frustrated! And no gas stations close! Seriously ridiculious! Who was the developer/planner…idiot!!!

December 30, 2010 at 10:20 pm
(38) Chris says:

Found a Circle K at 1945 E. Van Buren which is about 5 mins away.

January 28, 2011 at 8:38 am
(39) BarbP says:

One thing I didn’t see mentioned is that Arizona has a law that allows rental agencies to charge you for any days lost because a vehicle is out of use (repairs, etc). Your normal car insurance doesn’t cover that! To purchase that insurance is something like $20 a day, too…We end up spending $300 plus to drive a little tiny car for five days. Expensive, yes. But convenient.

January 28, 2011 at 8:40 am
(40) BarbP says:

Is EVERY rental agency in this building, so if I rent something on Priceline, it will be at the Rental Center?

January 28, 2011 at 9:39 am
(41) Judy says:

To BarbP: Every rental car company with an airport contract is at the rental center. My guess is that Priceline would only use those. Here are some rental companies that are not at the airport:
http://phoenix.about.com/od/transrental/a/carrental.htm. You can check those out on your own. They’ll be cheaper without airport fees, but might not be as convenient.

February 9, 2011 at 5:06 pm
(42) bOB sMITH says:

I’ve been there at least a dozen times. The car rental site is nice and clean and easy to get to. the bus picks you up and drops you off at the front door. I once had to wait a massive amount of time to pick up my car but it was a busy day. Don’t count on the circle K for gas. It is in the “hood”. We stopped there once and my wife wouldn’t let me out of the car. Fill up on your way to the airport before you get close and let them throw another 10 bucks in the tank. It is worth it to avoid the neighborhood around the rental building.

March 4, 2011 at 4:44 pm
(43) Bill S. says:

This place has the worst tax/fee add-on I’ve ever seen. Look at what renting here will add to your costs! It’s outrageous.

March 11, 2011 at 3:01 pm
(44) Carolyn R says:

We searched online for a good car rental deal for our vacation in Phoenix and thought we had found it – $246.99 for 6 days. When we returned the car (after driving around in circles on I10 & Rt 202 trying to find the rental center) we were appalled at the final bill – $676.62. They had added every kind of tax, fee and county surcharge on the planet to our bill.

March 11, 2011 at 3:10 pm
(45) Judy Hedding says:

Hello Carolyn R.
That must have been a shock! While our rental car taxes and fees are high in Phoenix — no argument there — they are not 200 or 300%. I’d love to see a copy of that bill; there’s something else going on here.

March 15, 2011 at 1:38 am
(46) Janos Wimpffen says:

PHX has perhaps the worst car rental system. Only BWI comes close. The new consolidated terminal was a major mistake. It is set somewhere near Yuma. Perhaps it should have its own air service to Sky Harbor. Indeed, on a flight from LAX, the dwell time waiting for a shuttle bus, the long ride through streets and traffic signals, and a very long counter wait exceeded the time of the flight to get there. Henceforth, Tucson will be preferable. This was clearly not well planned, or so many compromises were put into place that it negated any shred of convenience. The old system was far, far better–avoid PHX if you plan to rent a car!

March 22, 2011 at 11:47 pm
(47) Bernie says:

Nowhere can I find information on the Phoenix car rental center’s hours of operation. Most frustrating.

April 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm
(48) Sarah says:

I love the rental car center! It’s super convenient and the prices on rentals are often times cheaper then a facility located outside of the airport. My in-laws are coming in town tomorrow and we are renting a minivan for EIGHT days for only 176+tax. I couldn’t find that deal anywhere else!

We are going to be picking the car up tomorrow morning before they get here. Is there a parking lot that is close to the rental car center where we could park our car for about an hour?

April 8, 2011 at 9:40 pm
(49) Judy Hedding says:

Hi Sarah,

There is a visitor parking lot (free) as you head into the rental car center; you’ll see it when you take the shuttle in. It’s on the ramp up, so you might have to exit and come back in, not positive. It shouldn’t be difficult.

April 9, 2011 at 12:19 pm
(50) FrequentFlyer says:

I have never seen so many people waiting fir a bus to the terminal, and so many “OUT OF SERVICE” buses parade by. I thought an extra hour would be enough, guess not.

Took the first bus that stopped, so I ended up going to T3 to walk to T2. Probably the only reason I made my flight.

April 29, 2011 at 1:16 pm
(51) Not a fan says:

Easily the worst rental car situation of any airport
1) Amount of extra time it takes to secure a car over other airports – last trip took a total of 1.5 hours from landing to driving out of the rental center garage.
Shuttle bus was infrequent and slow. Lines at the facility were long. Lines in the garage were long. Checkout process long.
2) Cost – Fees and taxes were 97.6% of the one day rental.
Business trips to Phoenix are downright dreadful due to the rental car situation.

May 4, 2011 at 4:58 pm
(52) Denise Martinez says:

Whoever designed the Sky Harbor Rental Car Center is an idiot, without vision, creativity and a practical bone in his/her body. Whoever is the urban planner who approved the design should be fired for dereliction of duty and sued for squandering public resources. I can’t believe such a waste of space was actually built.

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