Welcome to Miami! Long a dream vacation destination, nearly 18 million visitors a year enter the Sunshine State via Miami International Airport (MIA). One in six, or nearly 17,000 visitors a day, relies on rental cars to get them from the airport to their ultimate destination. The last thing visitors want is a confusing and frustrating car rental experience at the end of the day.
In the past, renting a car at MIA meant a visitor had to collect their luggage and then proceed to the car rental area inside the airport to make their transaction. After that, they made their way to the passenger pickup area on the third level of the concourse to wait for the appropriate shuttle to take them to the off-site car lot.
Traffic congestion around the concourses led to long wait times and sporadic timetables for the shuttles. Once on the shuttle, there was a time consuming trip through gridlocked traffic to the car lot. In all, it wasn’t the ideal start to a stay in the Miami area.
Fast forward to today. Visitors to the Miami area are treated to one of the most convenient and visually stunning rental car experiences in the US. Redesigned with the traveler’s comfort and convenience in mind, MIA has dramatically streamlined the car rental process by building the state-of-the-art, MIA Rental Car Center (RCC) at 3900 N.W. 25th Street, just over a mile from the airport.
The MIA Rental Car Center eliminates the cramped quarters of the airport rental car area, the long waits for the shuttle and the slow trip through airport traffic. A passenger disembarking at MIA who wants to rent a car is now directed to the Rental Car Center. After they collect their luggage, convenient signage directs them to take the elevators to the third level of the concourse where they step aboard a moving sidewalk that carries them to MIA Mover station located between the Flamingo and Dolphin Parking Garages. The MIA Mover is a free monorail shuttle that travels between the airport and the MIA Rental Car Center. Unlike the shuttles, the MIA Mover can handle 3,000 customers an hour and arrives every few minutes.Detail of the Rental Car Center at the Miami Intermodal Center (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
After a short, two minute ride during which the passenger enjoys great views of downtown Miami, they arrive at the Rental Car Center’s customer service area. This spacious customer service lobby is home to sixteen car rental companies that were previously located in or in close proximity to the airport. This diversity lets the customer choose their best option among rental car company offers. Attuned to travelers’ desire to be on their way in the shortest amount of time, the Rental Car Center boasts express check-in and check-out service. It is a safe and easy car rental experience.
The MIA Rental Car Center is made up of four levels. The customer lobby is on the fourth level while the lower three levels house a fleet of 6, 500 vehicles and provide fuel and maintenance facilities. The Quick Turnaround Area keeps cars moving quickly through the system and has the capacity to wash and re-fuel 300 cars per hour.
The MIA Rental Car Center and the MIA Mover are integral parts of a larger project called the Miami Intermodal Center (MIC). A final component of this Center is the Miami Central Station (MCS), Miami-Dade’s first all-inclusive transportation hub. In addition to car rentals, it connects the airport to other forms of ground transportation including Metrorail, Miami’s elevated rapid transit system. The Miami Central Station is located on the lobby level of the Miami Rental Car Center and is accessed via an elevated pedestrian walkway. By the end of 2013, Miami Central Station will complete connections to Amtrack, Tri-Rail, buses and taxicabs.
Increased convenience and safety are not the only benefits of the new Rental Car Center; it was also designed to be environmentally friendly. The entire Miami Intermodal Center which houses the Rental Car Center is LEED gold certified, the highest environmental standard for new buildings. Outdoor air quality and traffic congestion have also improved dramatically. Having car rentals in one off-site location decongests Miami International Airport’s curbside pickup area by 30 percent, eliminating approximately 1,400 shuttle bus trips per day. It also reduces carbon emissions from MIA’s roadways by 30 percent.
So if you have plans to travel to Miami, sit back, relax and enjoy one of the most stress-free car rental experiences in the industry.
Be sure to check out the MIA Rental Car Center website at http://www.miami-airport.com/car_rental.asp for on-site car rental companies, directions to the facility and more.