South Padre Island car rentals might be just right for you, if you’re the type of traveler who likes to cruise with the windows down. Whether you require a rental car when visiting this Gulf Coast destination is a personal choice. Some travelers love the freedom of South Padre Airport car rentals. By choosing a rental car, it is simple to reach your hotel or oceanfront condo, as well as venturing out for groceries, shopping, or dining out. Others can’t be bothered worrying about directions, parking, and the cost of gas and insurance. Before you decide either way, weigh the pros and cons to decide if a rental car is necessary for your vacation.
Before you can figure out South Padre Island car rentals, you need to arrange for a flight. There are two airports located within 30 miles of South Padre Island. The closer one of the two is Brownsville-South Padre Island International Airport. This option is located just 20 miles away from South Padre Island, and airlines offering service here include Continental and American. Some people skip South Padre Airport car rentals when arriving at this airport because taxis or shuttles are affordable from this distance. On the other hand, some travelers prefer the freedom of a rental car despite the airport being close to their final destination.
The other airport option is Valley International Airport in Harlingen. This choice is located about 30 miles from South Padre Island is served by airlines including Continental and Southwest. Some travelers find that this distance from South Padre Island warrants choosing South Padre Airport car rentals. Others might be intimidated by the distance and not want to worry about maps or finding directions. Both airports have many options for car rentals, but don’t wait until you arrive to make a reservation. In almost all cases you will find a better deal by booking a car rental online before you arrive. Compare companies to discover who is offering the best deal.
When choosing South Padre Island car rentals, you will be able to choose between the major rental companies including Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, and National. If you aren’t a member at any of these rental companies, there are still strategies for securing a discount. Check to see if the airline you’re flying to South Padre Island has any affiliation with a car rental company. Many airlines and car rental companies have formed alliances, providing discounts when you show your plane ticket upon arrival. If you’re having a hard time choosing between companies, this discount might be enough to help you make a decision.
Researching the alternative options for airport transportation might help you to decide whether or not you want a rental car. There are several shuttle companies connecting the airport with South Padre Island. These cost around $20 per person and are based on a shared model, meaning you will share a shuttle with other travelers. There are a few downsides to taking a shuttle. First, you are paying per passenger. In a taxi, your whole family can ride for one price. Second, you might be dropped off last, wasting your precious vacation time. The final option is the WAVE free island shuttle, connecting the airports with South Padre Island at no cost. Hours are from 7 am to 7 pm. Once you have all the information, you can decide whether you want to book a rental car and start making a list of all the area attractions you plan to visit.