Oakland Airport Car Rental – The Best Companies

by Michael C. Upton  |  Updated April 8, 2021

The Oakland International Airport is located only 10 miles south of Downtown Oakland on the other side of San Francisco Bay from the Golden Gate City making it the perfect arrival point for business and leisure travelers. More than 13 million passengers go through the terminal gates every year at California’s fourth largest airport. Thirteen airlines spirit travelers to Oakland from 55 international and domestic destinations.

Oakland International Airport (Photo: S.Darlin via Flickr/ CC BY 2.0)

The Rental Car Center at OAK is open 24 hours and can be reached by shuttle bus. Buses run from the terminals to the Rental Car Center every 10 minutes or less and “on demand” between 1:30 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. The shuttle ride to the Rental Car Center takes approximately 10 minutes. Shuttles pick up airport passengers from the 4th curb outside Terminal 2. Most major international and a few regional car rental agencies can be found at OAK.

To determine which rental car companies offer the best vehicles across our three categories (Most Affordable, Best for Luxury, Best for Minivans), has carefully researched the prices, availability, policies, and customer reviews of the 10 car rental companies operating out of Oakland International Airport. Here are our findings:

Most affordable: FOX

With most of its rental locations in Mexico, Spain, and Italy, Fox Rent A Car may not be a household name to many North Americans, but the agency has sites at eight California airports, including OAK. Fox maintains over 100 US and international locations and takes pride in their wide selection of high-quality vehicles. Whether it is an economy-sized Toyota Yaris or a full-sized Jeep Cherokee, Fox dominates the pricing category for rentals at OAK beating all other companies at a comparison of weekly rates. However, Fox’s full-size Toyota Camry and Jeep offerings are limited stock.

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Best for luxury cars: ALAMO

The Cadillac XTS offers both comfort and power in a luxury automobile. The XTS is equipped with a fierce and exclusive V6 engine, smartphone-like functionality, and front bucket seats with 22-way adjustability and massage feature (on some models). Alamo beats competing rental agencies in weekly price and offers online check-in, a self-service kiosk, and their Skip the Counter program beyond their 7-days a week, 6:00 a.m. till 09:00 p.m. hours at the airport. For a sporty option for the Cali cruise nine out of ten rental companies (all except Fox) at OAK offer a Ford Mustang Cabrio; this convertible option will be perfect for drives to the coast.

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Best for Minivans: DOLLAR

Dollar is the only rental company at the airport with a fleet of Nissan Quests. These 7-passenger minivans are popular for their roomy interior, strong engine, and decent gas mileage. Middle and back row passengers love the double sliding doors for easy entry and exit from the vehicle. Known for their short lines and friendly, helpful service Dollar is rated as the most popular rental car company at OAK. The weekly rental for a Nissan Quest is among the lowest rates available for minivans at the airport. For traveling families, Dollar offers baby seats, child seats, and booster seats for rent at a low $13.99 per day.

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