Car Hire from Seattle Airport
Sitting in the North West corner of the USA, the state of Washington is home to a number of sweeping national parks and the dynamic city of Seattle. Flying into Seattle’s international airport (Sea-Tac) and hiring a car from the airport is a great way to experience the best the state has to offer.
Where to hire a car at Seattle Airport
Numerous car hire companies operate at Seattle Airport including Alamo, Avis, Hertz, Sixt, Thrifty, Enterprise, Budget and National Car.
All of the car rental companies at Sea-Tac Airport are located out of the terminal building, a few minutes’ drive away. Shuttle buses run 24 hours a day from the terminal to the car hire offices. There are two pick-up locations for the shuttle buses, outside baggage claim at both the north and south exits of the main terminal.
Petrol Stations near Seattle Airport
There is a petrol station just seconds from the rental car area. ARCO Garage can be found on route 99, going north from the airport and car hire office.
Driving around Seattle Airport
Driving around Seattle can prove a little tricky. The city is known for its traffic jams so driving can be slow going. It’s also useful to note that in the USA, you can turn right when the traffic lights are on red, as long as you come to a complete stop first.
From the airport, route 5 travels south close to the coast, down to Portland, and also goes north, up through Seattle city and towards the Canadian border. Route 90 takes you east, cutting through the national parks and heading towards Montana.
Getting to your destination
Seattle Airport offers easy car access to a variety of city and countryside locations, including the following.
The biggest city in the state of Washington, Seattle is vibrant and diverse. Sitting on the eastern coast of America it is a creative place, the birthplace of grunge music and filled with striking street art. It’s possible to fill a week wandering around its different neighbourhoods sampling the local culture, beer and music.
The city of Seattle is just 15 minutes’ drive from the airport, taking the 518 and the 1548. The city centre is not particularly traffic friendly, with notorious traffic jams and expensive parking. It may be best to park on the outskirts of the city and take advantage of Seattle’s compact size and speedy public transport network. Parking spaces near the Space Needle are cheaper than the average and it’s possible to take the monorail down to the city centre.
Mount Rainier National Park
Home to an active volcano, Mount Rainier is 14,410 above sea level and punctuated with glaciers, ancient forests, and meadows filled with wild flowers. The park offers a range of accommodation and lots of outdoor activities including walking, climbing and discovering the local wildlife.
Mount Rainier National Park lies south east of Seattle Airport, taking route 5 out of the airport and turning onto route 18 to head inland. There are various entrances on all sides of the park which offer parking spaces. It is always wise to check for road closures before travelling to Mount Rainier National Park, particularly during winter months.
Providing easy access to the Olympic National Park and with a host of local activities, including wine tasting, kayaking, whale watching or searching for antiques, Port Angeles is a lively city. With a car, it’s especially easy to get to the area’s beautiful secluded beaches and up-and-coming wineries.
Port Angeles can be reached in 2 to 3 hours from Seattle Airport. There are various routes including taking route 5 south to Tacoma, then picking up route 16, or going north on route 5 and then taking route 99 out of the city. Parking in the compact city is easy and relatively cheap.