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Car Rental San Francisco Airport

Renting a Car from San Francisco Airport? Here's what you Need to Know

When flying in to San Francisco International Airport, finding a rental car to use during your stay here is a breeze. This airport is designed in such a way that its rental car center is located away from its busy terminals, yet not so far away that getting to and from it is difficult. You’ll find the rental car center conveniently located, and staffed with friendly, knowledgeable staff members who will make getting your automobile easy.

Getting to the Rental Car Center

To get to the rental car center, you can simply take the AirTrain Blue line. AirTrain Blue is San Francisco Airport’s automated transportation system that operates around the clock seven days a week. For your convenience, AirTrain Blue stations are found in all terminals, as well as in the terminal parking garage.

Finding an AirTrain Blue station from anywhere in the airport may require you to use the elevator, stairs or escalator to get to another level. From Terminal 1, 2, or 3, you will ascend to the Mezzanine on Level 3 and then walk across the skybridge. You may also access AirTrain Blue via boarding areas A and G, which are located within the International Terminal. Stations may also be accessed from the airport’s parking garages by:

  • Taking the elevator or stairs to Level 5 from the domestic parking garage
  • Using the elevator or stairs to reach Level 7 from any of the international parking garages

Dropping Off

When dropping off your rental car, you can access the rental car center by taking South Airport Boulevard to San Bruno Avenue. Once you have completed the check-in process, you can once again ride AirTrain Blue to get to the exact terminal you need to access for your return flight.

Information Booths

San Francisco International Airport has numerous information booths located throughout the terminals. Should you have difficulty finding an AirTrain Blue station, speak with one of the knowledgeable representatives stationed there for assistance. Help is available in multiple languages.

Visiting San Francisco is much more enjoyable when you have a rental car to get around town in. Renting an automobile from the San Francisco International Airport is virtually hassle free, thanks to the easy-to-access rental car center located here.

Picture Gallery of San Francisco Airport

Car Rental In San Francisco Airport - san francisco airport entrance
san francisco airport entrance
Rent A Car In San Francisco Airport - san francisco airport from above
san francisco airport from above
Rental Car In San Francisco Airport - san francisco airport interior
san francisco airport interior

Airport Data for SFO
Transportation from SFO
Parking Information

Identification Codes:  


Distance from SFO to: 

  • San Francisco city center – 13 miles (21 km)
  • San Jose – 37 miles (60 km)
  • Pittsburgh – 114 miles (183 km)
  • Sacramento – 98 miles (158 km)
  • Reno – 229 miles (368 km)

Nearest Major Airports: 

  • Oakland Airport – 30 miles (49 km)
  • San Jose Airport – 34 miles (55 km)
  • Sacramento Airport – 103 miles (165 km)
  • Los Angeles Airport – 390 miles (627 km)
  • Santa Ana Airport – 423 miles (680 km)

San Francisco Time Zone: 

  • 8 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT –8:00)

Hotels near SFO: 

  • There are 46 hotels within 3 miles (5 km) of San Francisco Airport
  • Courtesy shuttles are available from all terminals

Facts about SFO:

  • San Francisco Airport is a major gateway to Europe, Asia and Australia
  • SFO hosts an aviation museum and an aviation library
  • An automated weather station is on site
  • It is the second busiest airport in California after Los Angeles
  • Delays are often caused by poor visibility

Car Rental at San Francisco Airport:

  • There are 8 rental car companies at San Francisco Airport
  • Rental car counters are on the 4th floor of SFO Rental Car Center
  • There 2 off-site car rental companies accessed by free shuttle from the center
  • Car hire prices change depending on the season

San Francisco Bus:

  • SamTrans public bus service
  • 24 hour service to San Francisco and other destinations
  • Busses depart from all terminals
  • Privately operated scheduled buses run from Arrivals level at all terminals

Taxi Service:

  • Available outside of all terminals at arrival level
  • Uniformed taxi coordinators to assist
  • Fare to downtown San Francisco is 44.00 USD
  • *1.00 USD = 0.70 EUR, 0.60 GBP


  • BART Rapid Rail Station is on departure level of the international terminal
  • Carltrain Commuter rail to San Jose

Other Transport:

  • Shared ride vans depart roadway center island at departures level of all terminals
  • Limousines can be booked through courtesy phones
  • AirTrain runs between terminals, parking areas, rental car center and BART station

Short-Term Parking

  • Domestic parking garage for all terminals
  • 2.00 USD per 20 minutes
  • Maximum 33.00 USD per day

Daily/Hourly Parking

  • International Parking Garages A and G
  • In front of the international terminal
  • 2.00 USD per 20 minutes
  • Maximum 20.00 USD per day

Long-Term Parking

  • Away from the terminals at South Airport Blvd
  • 14.00 USD per day
  • Free parking shuttle pick-up/drop-off


  • Located in Domestic Garage
  • 38.00 USD for first 24 hours
  • 45.00 USD each additional 24 hours
  • *1.00 USD = 0.70 EUR, 0.60 GBP

*Prices, information and exchange rates are as of June 18, 2009