4 Best Miami Airport Car Rental Companies — Browse Tips on Renting a Car in Miami in 2023
When visiting Miami, it’s not at all uncommon for travelers to rent a car. Whether you want to explore just Miami, drive around the rest of Florida, or take a road trip down through the Florida Keys, a rental car can make it happen. Luckily, since MIA is one of the largest airports in Florida (second only to Orlando’s airport), you’ll find lots of options for renting a car on-site.
Miami airport features its own MIA Rental Car Center. The center is accessed via the MIA Mover, located on the third level of the Dolphin and Flamingo garages, directly between the two garages. The 24-hour rental car center features more than a dozen rental car companies, all in one spot. There are additional car rental companies located near the airport. Some offer pickup at the airport.
So how do you pick the best of the bunch? Which car rental company is right for you based on your individual travel needs? Here are our four favorite options and what you need to know about each.
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National performs just slightly better than Enterprise with its bevy of good reviews on Google. The pricing is also very similar. National boasts an 8.6 “Excellent” rating on Kayak. It receives high marks for cleanliness, comfort, overall experience, pick-up and drop-off experience, and value for the money.
If you’re a National Emerald Club member, you get extra perks like the ability to bypass the check-in counter. You can choose your vehicle immediately. You also can earn free rental days and more via the company’s rewards program. A handy National mobile app makes the entire experience even easier and tech-friendly.
Pros: National receives high rankings on both Google and Kayak. It also offers extra perks that help you get on the road faster and more conveniently.
Cons: Just like Enterprise, National’s pricing isn’t the most budget-friendly out of all your rental car options.
Phone: (844) 887-8399
Hours: Daily from 5 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Google Rating: 4.4 stars
With Alamo, we’re getting into the more affordable car rental options. But, just because you’re saving money, that doesn’t mean you’re sacrificing a quality experience. Reviewers frequently mention how nice the staff at the Miami airport Alamo location are. They also appreciate how accommodating the staff are, giving free extensions and upgrades, etcetera. In addition to offering lower prices in general, Alamo also offers specials and sales, for ways you can save even more.
If you’re a frequent traveler, though, and looking for a car rental provider that will allow you to earn points, transfer those points to other programs, or achieve VIP status, you’ll likely be disappointed. Alamo doesn’t offer a typical rewards program. Instead, it just offers Alamo Insiders. This is, essentially, a basic loyalty program that gives you a 5% discount on your rental. While that’s a great option, it’s not as exciting as what some other car rental providers might offer. Still, despite this, you can earn other points and miles when you rent with Alamo if you use certain travel rewards credit cards.
Another fantastic perk? Unlike some other rental car providers at MIA, Alamo’s rental counter is open 24 hours per day.
Pros: Alamo gives its customers great deals, routine sales to save more money, and, with a quick sign-up for the Alamo Insiders program, 5% off your rental costs. On top of these cost-saving benefits, Alamo customers also report great service and friendly staff.
Cons: Alamo doesn’t offer a traditional rewards program.
Phone: (844) 891-0547
Hours: 24 hours
Google Rating: 4.2 stars
With more than 3,000 reviews on Google and a 4.3-star Google rating, Enterprise stands out. It’s one of the most highly ranked national rental car companies at Miami International Airport.
Customers report a high level of service and lots of handy perks. These include free shuttles from the car rental center to the Miami cruise ship port. The location offers SUVs, vans, luxury cars, and sports cars, as well as passenger vans, pickup trucks, and convertibles. Reviews also mention the fast and courteous customer service. Several likewise mention the appreciated fact that the counter staff doesn’t try to unnecessarily sell you on upgrades to your rental.
It is worth noting, though, that Enterprise is typically one of the more expensive rental car services nationwide, not just at Miami’s airport. If you’re traveling on a strict budget, you may need to consider one of the other car rental providers on our list. Luckily, we’re recommending a few budget providers, too!
If, though, you’re a frequent traveler or a business traveler, the extra cost may be worth it to you. Why? Enterprise offers a robust loyalty program that comes with extra perks. The Enterprise Plus program allows you to earn points to spend on future rentals. The more you spend, the more extra perks you receive as a VIP member. You can also transfer points to and from Enterprise, pairing them with other favorite travel loyalty programs.
Pros: This Enterprise location offers lots of vehicle options. It also offers extra perks such as free shuttle service to the cruise port. Reviews tout the location’s excellent customer service.
Cons: Enterprise is not the most budget-friendly rental car provider at Miami International Airport.
Phone: (833) 479-1096
Hours: Daily from 5 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Google Rating: 4.3 stars
If you prefer a local touch when you travel, you might want to check out Family Auto Rental. While the rental provider does have a website that looks straight from the early days of the internet, it still boasts a prime spot in the MIA Rental Car Center and 4-star or higher rankings on both Google and Yelp. Reviews mention the company’s newer vehicles and great prices. They also make note of the fact that customers don’t need to wait long to get their deposits returned to their bank accounts after their rental period is up.
Because of the car rental company’s local, small biz status, it does offer a few things that the big guys don’t or won’t. For example, Family Auto Rental will accept payment in bitcoins. The company also does not require leaving a credit card on file when you pick up your rental. You can rent with either cash or a debit card.
However, while there are benefits to working with a small business, there are also drawbacks. For example, Family Auto Rental doesn’t offer the extended service hours that many other rental car companies at MIA do. Instead, you can always use the company’s drop-off service if you need to drop off your vehicle while the counter is closed. Similarly, Family Auto Rental does not have a rewards program.
Pros: You get the benefits and special touch of working with a small, local business. It just helps matters that this particular local business has racked up some great reviews and ratings.
Cons: You won’t get the level of help that you would with large car rental companies, which have standard operating procedures and dedicated customer service departments.
Hours: Daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Google Rating: 4.1 stars
So you’ve seen our four favorite, top-rated car rental companies at Miami International Airport. Now, what do you need to know about renting a car in Miami in general?
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FAQs: Renting Cars at Miami International Airport
The rental car companies at Miami International Airport are located at the MIA Rental Car Center. To reach the center, take the MIA Mover from the airport to 3900 NW 25th Street, Miami. The MIA Mover is accessed via the third-level Skyride and moving walkway, located directly between the Dolphin and Flamingo garages.
Yes! You can find several rental car companies with locations right outside the airport, even if they’re not at the MIA Rental Car Center. These companies will still pick you up at the Rental Car Center, though, and take you where you need to go, to pick up your car and be on your way.
Current providers that offer this pick-up service include EasiRent, Miami Rent-A-Car, Sales Rent-A-Car, JC Car Rental, OC Car Rental, Fox Rent-A-Car, One Switch Next Car, Colusa-Carwiz Rent-A-Car, and NU Car Rentals.
There are many ways to get to downtown Miami from the Miami airport, without renting a car.
Taxis and ride app pickup zones for ride apps such as Uber and Lyft are located on the ground level of the airport, outside the baggage claim area. Traditional taxis offer rides at both metered and flat rates, depending on where you’re going.
Public transportation is also available. The MIA Mover, accessed via the third-level Skyride and moving walkway between the Dolphin and Flamingo garages, will take you to both the airport’s Rental Car Center and the metro rail and bus stations.
The metro rail will take you to several locations around Miami, for just $2.25 for each one-way trip, with trains departing every 15 minutes on the weekends and every 30 minutes on the weekdays. A tri-rail service will likewise take you to Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach. Fares differ according to where you want to go.
The Miami Beach Bus service will take you to and from Miami Beach, also for just $2.25 for each one-way trip. The buses are equipped with luggage racks and run every 30 minutes, 6 a.m. to 11:40 p.m. A separate metro bus service will take you to and from Miami, too. Again fares differ according to your chosen route.
Lastly, the Miami Trolley and the Miami Brightline are also accessible via the metro rail and bus stations.
If you’re flying into Miami specifically to take a cruise out of Miami, then you’ll find that you need to get directly to the Port of Miami from the airport, without much need to go downtown or to Miami Beach.
The Miami Trolley offers service to the Port of Miami and you can also take taxis or ride shares from the airport to the cruise port. However, many cruise lines will pre-arrange transportation for you. If that’s your situation, you can access pre-arranged cruise line transportation by going to either the North bus station at Concourse D, Level 1, Door 1, or the South bus station at Concourse J, Level 1, Door 3.
Yes, you will need to pay tolls if you drive on toll roads throughout Florida while in a rental car. Most of Florida’s toll roads feature cashless, touchless tolling, meaning that your rental car will typically be outfitted with a device that tracks your movement on toll roads and then charges you accordingly. Most major rental car providers will include this device and a toll service charge in the cost of your rental, so there’s nothing you need to do.
It all depends on your plans while you’re in the area. If you want to explore the region, then renting a car can save you cash that you’d otherwise spend on public transportation or ride-share services. However, if you plan to stay in one neighborhood, such as in Miami Beach (See our Best Beaches in Florida guide for additional information on locations near the Miami area), you might not find a rental car to be worth the money.
If you’re still unsure about renting a car in Miami, take into consideration that parking and driving in Miami is no easy feat. Parking is at a premium and traffic can be heavy, so you’ll want to put your family’s most confident driver behind the wheel.
No, you do not need extra rental car insurance when renting a car in Miami. The rental provider will include your bare-minimum coverage as part of your contract. You can upgrade the insurance from there.
Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.
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