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Airport to Hotel Congress

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
565 posts
54 reviews
Airport to Hotel Congress

Hello,

I arrive on a Thursday around 4:30 pm from LAX. Is there public transportation from Tucson airport to the hotel (Congress Hotel)? Or is Uber/Lyft/Taxi best to get from airport to hotel? I'd like to get a rental car on Friday (from downtown Hotel Congress area to return on Saturday evening or early Sunday morning). I'd be returning the car to the airport. Any suggestions on rental companies in downtown that I can easily return at airport?

Thanks so much !!

9 replies to this topic
USA
Destination Expert
for Tucson
Level Contributor
16,170 posts
30 reviews
1. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

I would just rent from the airport for convenience. Price it out, might be a cost savings in the long run.

Plus many car rental agencies charge extra for a one way rental. Granted in this case it wouldn't be a great distance apart, but it would still be a one way rental, definitely enquire about that.

2. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

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Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
565 posts
54 reviews
3. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

Thanks. Yeah I was hoping not to do a bus change. But I thought I might save rental costs and parking fees on Thursday since I probably won't be driving anywhere that first evening. Perhaps parking is not too expensive, in LA it's usually $40-$50 per night.

tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
Level Contributor
17,757 posts
90 reviews
4. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

There is no one way fee in Tucson for returning a rental car at the airport. Enterprise and most other rental car companies are in the parking garage at the south end of the terminal. Uber picks up at a marked location outisde on the curb in the same area.

Uber gives an estimate of $16-40 for that ride depending on size of vehicle requested, plus tip. That would be well on the way to most of a day's rental for a rental car. Taking the bus will take an hour or more. Uber will take 20 minutes, as will you driving. For Uber you have to have an account and make a reservation on a mobile app or online.

Hotel Congress doesn't have much parking, but there is a lot across the street at the Amtrak station and a parking garage just east of the hotel. Ask the hotel if they reimburse your parking fees.

The downtown area and the adjacent 4th Avenue area are good for walking, as well as served by light rail. The rest of Tucson is not a walking city. Transportation other than the light rail is time consuming. If you want to go to plces within the city other than downtown, you need a car or you'll spend a lot of money on Uber. Notice I said nothing about taxis. If you pick the right taxi company, some taxis are OK, but Uber is better.

Marina, California
Destination Expert
for Tucson
Level Contributor
7,264 posts
106 reviews
5. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

Check the prices before you consider it, as a one-way rental tends to have some extra fees attached to it. For instance, renting locally from Hertz, they charge $20 to drop off at the airport, while Enterprise charges $35. The fees at Tucson Airport are really not that high in comparison to other airports, so it's likely going to be worth it to just rent the car there.

I've actually taken the #11, down Alvernon (which is a really bad suggestion, as the transfer will add a ton of time), and the #25, which goes directly Downtown from the airport after stopping at Laos Transit Center, and they've taken a very long time. They are local service buses, meaning they stop about every half mile along the way. You're talking about at least an hour on the bus vs. 15-20 minutes driving. You also have to consider that you will likely be waiting a little while for the bus.

Weekend rates start at noon on Thursday. Avis, for example, offers a free weekend day when you rent for two days, but it's not available for one-way rentals. Keep in mind also that a "day" in terms of car rentals is 24 hours, so picking up at 9am on Friday means returning at 8pm on Saturday is 2 days.

If you're really against renting a car the first day, then I would suggest just taking a taxi or Lyft. It's not that expensive.

Hotel Congress has free parking for guests. You'll need to check in first and get instructions from them. Additionally, you can park for free on the streets, at the meters, between 5pm and 8am. And there are plenty of meters around the hotel.

Hope that helps.

tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
Level Contributor
17,757 posts
90 reviews
6. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

Parking is not expensive in Tucson, but I don't know how much as I avoid parking and use the light rail for downtown. I would never take a bus from the airport to downtown. Safe but yes transfer and not timely.

7. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

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tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
Level Contributor
17,757 posts
90 reviews
8. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

Enterprise does have a $35 dropoff fee if renting at a city location and returning at the airpoort. Hertz (calling their reservations today) said they waive such a fee. Some rental car companies call this a relocation fee or one way rental.

Marina, California
Destination Expert
for Tucson
Level Contributor
7,264 posts
106 reviews
9. Re: Airport to Hotel Congress

Hertz charges the one way fee at the counter, regardless of whether you prepaid or not. I would worry more about having it added on the return because that's who is actually closing you out. You just have to review the receipt closely.

Avis/Budget doesn't charge a one way fee but sometimes has higher rates for it. I've done local one ways with them in Tucson though and it's generally been about the same as a round trip.

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