San Francisco Car Rental/Transportation Help

Dec 30th, 2009, 02:09 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 26
San Francisco Car Rental/Transportation Help

Hi Everyone!!

I have a quick car rental question about the San Francisco Airport. My mom and I will be getting in late to SFO, so the next morning we are going to go back to the airport and pick up our rental car. We will then drive down to Monterrey to spend a few nights. When we drive back to San Francisco (from Monterrey) we want to spend a couple days in the city (car-free) so we are planning on dropping our car rental back at Fox Car Rental at the airport. My question that I need help with is this...is there any way to get from Fox Car Rental to our Union Square area hotel? I know taxis are an option but I hear they are pretty pricey. If anyone has any ideas/suggestions that would be very helpful! Thank you in advance.

Kristin
Jeter2Kris is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 02:13 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 6,512
If Fox Car Rental is at the airport, it is quick and easy to take BART from there to the Union Square area.

But are you sure you want to rent from the airpport location? They generally have higher prices than the downtown locations. Pickup and dropff downtown would save you the trips back and forth to the airport.
enzian is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:06 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 26
enzian-
We are staying overnight Saturday at a hotel near the airport, then Sunday morning we will go pick up the car. Do you think it's smarter to go into the city to get a car or just go to the nearby airport for a rental? There is also a huge parade/festival that day on Market Street, so we are thinking it may be better to avoid downtown at all costs. Let me know what you think! Thanks so much for your feedback
Jeter2Kris is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:12 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 25,544
It is more expensive to rent at the airport than in town, but going into San Francisco to pick up a car when you're heading south, not north, would be silly. You should check Hertz "Local Edition" to see if you can get a good price -- maybe they will even pick you up at your airport hotel.

https://www.hertz.com/rentacar/byr/i...ocationTab.jsp
sf7307 is online now  
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:17 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,220
You could check to see if any of the airport hotels have rental desks. Maybe someone who knows will add a message here. Or you could check addresses of some the major car rental companies to find out if there are neighborhood locations fairly near the airport. Try Burlingame, San Bruno, Millbrae, etc. Get out your map and check around.

I'd avoid San Francisco if there's a huge event on Market St.
Betsy is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:29 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 6,512
I see. Under your circumstances, then no need to go into the City to pick up your car---expecially with the parade! But like others, I wonder if there is an off-site (not at the airport) pace to pick up your car, to avoid the airport surcharge. Maybe it's not all that much---but it's worth checking into---expeically if your airport hotel has a rental car pick-up desk.
enzian is offline  
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:33 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 26
Thank you all for your suggestion about an off-site rental company. Unfortunately, it looks like several of them are closed on Sundays! If anyone knows of an off-site rental car company outside of San Francisco that is open on Sundays, please let me know! Thank you all, I am so appreciative of your helpful ideas
Jeter2Kris is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 03:35 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 7,443
I remember finding several open on Sunday's in and around our hotel this past March. They may open an hour or two later and they close earlier as well. I think one of them was on Embarcadero. Another was not far from Union Square(this is where I remember being). It was classified as a business rental or something like that. Sorry I am not being more specific, but I just wanted you to know that they are available. You will probably have to dig to find it.

take Bart from the airport to SF.

either that, or Why not just stay near the airport in the first place. Why would you want to spend 45 minutes on bart(twice) plus the fee for going both ways.
spirobulldog is offline  
Dec 31st, 2009, 05:13 AM
  #9  
J62
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 10,320
Embarcadero or any other SF city location isn't what Jeter2Kris is looking for. They ARE staying near the airport, not in SF before they head south to Monterey.

Fox is the least convenient of all the SFO airport rental locations. From the terminal you take the AirTrain to the rental car depot, then from there you take a Fox van for another 5min ride. I've used them when the rate is great, but not when I'm in a hurry. For the reverse you'd drop off the car at Fox, van to the rental car center, AirTrain to the airport BART station, then take BART to SF near Union Sq (Powell St stop). Doable, but you'd be adding pain and time unnecessarily.

I find that Dollar.com consistently has the best rates at SFO or in SF. They have an in-city location not far from Union Sq., as do all the other companies (besides Fox). Sometimes (rarely) Hertz has competitive rates. I like to use www.orbitz.com for rental car comparison shopping then go straight to the rental car co website to book.

Here's what I would recommend:
Saturday upon arrival. Rent a car from one of the co's at the rental car depot (not from Fox) then drive anywhere from 10-30min South on 101 & get a hotel. There are plenty of hotels starting in San Carlos, Redwood City, Palo Alto, Mtn View, Sunnyvale, and Santa Clara - all of which are before San Jose (listed in order from SFO south). Most should have free parking, which you won't find at an SFO area hotel.

Upon return to SF drive straight to your SF hotel, checkin, then drive 5min to the in-city location to drop of your rental car. In my experience there is no drop off fee renting at the airport and dropping off in-city SF.
J62 is online now  
Dec 31st, 2009, 08:55 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,616
I totally agree w/ J62. I think some posters didn't closely read your posts. You want NOTHING to do w/ going into SF to collect a car. Simply doesn't make sense.

I'd also not go to the hotel, then back to SFO or any other rental location the next morning before starting south. That just adds more to-ing and fro-ing and time wasting.

I'd pick up the car upon arrival - at SFO would be most convenient, but yes, that would cost more. Mostly depends on which is most important to you -- budget or convenience.

Then drive to your hotel - at SFO is OK but farther south as J62 mentions would be better. I might drive even farther than 10 or 15 mins if you don't think you'll be too tired. You say 'late' - what time do you actually land? 30-60 mins driving if possible, would get you much closer to Monterey.

But if you are landing really late - then just 10-15 mins drive will still get you far enough south to be out of the SFO hotels 'pay-to-park' standard.

Then drop the car off near your SF hotel - which will save a lot of schelpping of luggage back to SFO, on/off BART etc.
janisj is online now  
Dec 31st, 2009, 09:09 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 25,544
I agree completely with janis and J62, BUT, you don't have to drive too far from the airport to get free parking (most, but not all, of the airport hotels on the east side of the freeway all charge for parking (ex. Holiday Inn Express does not), but there are plenty of very nice motels on El Camino Real in Millbrae and Burlingame that do not charge. Just saying, if you think you'll be too tired to drive....let me know if this is your choice, and I'll recommend particular motels (I live in Burlingame).
sf7307 is online now  
Dec 31st, 2009, 09:41 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,616
sf7307 is right - you don't have to go very far. Mostly depends on how late is late and how far you think you might want to drive.

Besides the HI Express on the east side of 101, the GoodNite Inn (which I think has changed names - maybe the CitiGarden Inn??) also has free parking.

Plus places on the west side along El Camino Real etc sf7307 mentions
janisj is online now  
Dec 31st, 2009, 09:52 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 19,893
That "huge parade" - is it GBLT parade last weekend of June? If yes, downtown BART stations may be closed.

Also, when looking for driving suggestions type in "Monterey" with only one R or you will end up in Monterrey, Mexico
Dayenu is offline  
Jan 1st, 2010, 12:17 PM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 26
Thank you all!! There are some really creative and good ideas here. I am sorry I have not replied sooner. Here is what I came up with...let me know if you think this is ridiculous. I looked into picking up a car at the airport and then dropping off (when we get back to San Francisco) at in in-city location rather than the SFO location. The car rental goes up about $200 and I looked at Hertz, National and Dollar (I believe...). Either way, it was a good amount of money. SO as many of you suggested I looked for local car rentals in the SFO area. I found an Avis in San Bruno right near a shopping mall that has a BART location right behind it. Right across the street there is a highly rated Courtyard hotel. SO they said they have transportation to/from the airport. When we get into SFO they will pick us up (Sat. night). Then, Sunday morning (because they are open!!) we are going to walk to Avis (only a few hundred yards away) and pick up our car and drive south to Monterey (1 r, not 2!). When we leave Monterey, we will drive back to Avis in San Bruno, drop the car off and take the nearby BART back into the city to get to Hotel Triton. It took lots of researching, so I hope this works out! If anyone thinks this an awful idea, let me know! OR if you have a better idea I would be welcome to it Thank you again everyone. I am so grateful!
Jeter2Kris is offline  
Jan 1st, 2010, 12:44 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,616
I think that is a great plan - very workable. And saving $200 is always good
janisj is online now  
Jan 1st, 2010, 04:04 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 25,544
It is a good plan. The BART station is in walking distance (assuming you have bags with wheels that aren't too heavy!) from the hotel. In case you want something to eat when you arrive, there is a Chili's right there (pretty much AT the hotel) and also a BJ's sports bar in the shopping center (on the same side of the center as the hotel) you mentioned.
sf7307 is online now  
Jan 1st, 2010, 05:47 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 19,893
Triton is on Grant between Sutter and Bush - I looked it up. The closest BART station is Montgomery.
Dayenu is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2010, 12:46 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 26
Great! Sounds like I have found a good solution. Thank you to everyone for all your research and ideas. Hope you all have a great week! Happy travels.
Jeter2Kris is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Bettina222
United States
5
Jul 23rd, 2013 08:45 AM
Jabird
United States
16
May 22nd, 2011 10:13 PM
Jeter2Kris
United States
8
Sep 12th, 2009 07:13 PM
katyhotr
United States
6
Aug 2nd, 2007 07:55 AM
David
United States
9
May 8th, 2002 07:43 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:54 AM.