Tampa International Airport, located 9.7 kilometers west of downtown Tampa, Florida, is one of only a few airports that offer regular flights to and from Cuba. The airport’s central terminal, known for its iconic architecture when it first opened, is connected to four satellite air stations by passenger transport aircraft.
At the time, this was a groundbreaking concept in the airport’s terminals and gates.
Access to the airport’s car rental center is via the recently installed SkyConnect system, which connects the main terminal to the 2.6 million square foot rental center, which houses 16 rental brands. Trains arrive every 2 minutes and the journey takes about 5 minutes.
To determine which rental companies offer the best vehicles in our three categories (most affordable, best for luxury cars, best for minivans), we took a close look at the prices, availability, policies and customer reviews of 16 rental companies operating in the TPA. Here are the results of our research.
Best Value: The Alamo and Business
For the “most affordable” category, we found that both Alamo and Enterprise have the best cheap car rental options. Throughout the late summer, Alamo rented out the Mitsubishi Mirage for less than $40, while the larger and more luxurious Hyundai Elantra was available for just a few bucks. As is the case with most destinations, Alamo scores very high on drop-off speed, cleanliness, and condition, averaging 8.6/10 from customer feedback.Businesses cut back on a lot of the sly extra charges that most other companies make their money on, so their VW Jetta, Ford Fusion, and Ford Edge ads for $40-$50 a day are all good deals.
Best for luxury cars. United States dollars and Avis
Picking the best car rental company depends slightly on your preference for the car. If you’re a fan of American cars, then Avis has worked closely with General Motors to rent out Chrysler, Chevrolet, Ford Mustang and Lincoln MKZ as their most luxurious sedans at TPA Airport. Overall, if you’re looking for the cheapest deals and the most car options, then Dollar is the right choice, but it’s not always as good at customer service and return speed. At the TPA airport, they have a Chrysler 300 for just over $60 a day, with a $9 markup for a BMW X3.
Best for minivans: Alamo and Enterprise
Whether you’re cruising the Fort Lauderdale student body over spring break or heading to Everglade National Park as a family, you’ll probably want to rent a minivan. At Tampa International Airport, both Alamo and Enterprise rented the Dodge Grand Caravan and Nissan Quest for $60/day, and both companies had the highest customer feedback ratings at Tampa International Airport. The Alamo also leased the Toyota Sienna for about $10 more per day. No one likes to remodel rental cars, however, customer feedback supports Alamo’s claim that this is an area where they excel.